Ecotourism (MKTG 471k)

Each spring semester, the College of Business will offer a domestic Ecotourism class.  This class is open to students of all majors. It has no prerequisites classes.  Students will learn about how flora, fauna, and terrain are marketed with an emphasis on animal tourism. Students will also discuss the ethical arguments for and against ecotourism along with the impact of events such as Covid 19 outbreaks. Then we will take a road trip to practice and observe ecotourism in several domestic locations.

In Spring 2023, after the semester ends, we will practice and observe ecotourism in Connecticut, Vermont, New York (including Niagara Falls), and Pennsylvania. In the trip, students will actively engage in ecotourism and then reflect upon their experiences in a journal (a template will be provided with specific questions for each group activity).  The course will meet the second eight-weeks of Spring 2023 on Wednesday evenings from 6:00 PM to 8:45 PM and will be taught by Dr. Lance Gentry.  The 2023 trip is scheduled for May 7 (the Sunday after graduation) through May 14, 2023.

Each trip will:

  • Take place starting the Sunday after graduation and finish the following Saturday or Sunday
  • Include lodging, group activities, and breakfast at the locations.  If funds permit, will cover more meals, but this is not guaranteed


  • Will be able to bring a carry-on and one bag (learn to travel light!)
  • Are responsible for transportation to/from UMW, other meals, souvenirs, other activities and  and travel during free time

Tentative 2023 itinerary:  Highlights include a Forest Canopy Walk in Vermont and Niagra Falls in New York!

Designations and Credit

  • For all students, this class meets your Beyond The Classroom (BTC) requirement
    (or Experiential Learning if under the older general education requirements)
  • For Marketing majors, it will also count as one of your upper-level marketing electives
  • For Business Administration majors, it will also count as one of your upper-level business electives
  • For International Business majors, you can substitute this course for your BUAD 472 requirement
  • For all other majors, it will count as three hours toward your 120-hour requirement.

The 2023 trip will cost $1,999 in addition to your normal tuition for the class.  Students must make a deposit of $500 before they can register for the class.  The balance of $1499 is due on February 28, 2023.  There is a cap of 14 students for this course.  Seats will be provided on a first-deposited, first assigned basis.

If you wish to register for the class, you can pay your deposit at  There is a 2.75% fee for use of a credit card.  UMW accepts e-checks, there is no fee for use of e-checks.  The deposit is non-refundable unless the trip is cancelled for any reason.  You will need your Banner ID available when you pay online to ensure your deposit is associate with your student account.

Students interested in the 2023 or future Ecotourism trips should contact Professor Gentry at