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Program Details

GELS Hawaii will be our only GELS program offerred for Summer 2024. GELS DC is expected to return for Summer 2025. 

Managed by the Division of Extended Studies, the UC San Diego Global Environmental Leadership and Sustainability (GELS) programs combine scientific research with leadership training and personal growth skills in an effort to develop future leaders of change. Each program gives high school students an exclusive opportunity to engage and address environmental issues making news today through research and learning. The cutting-edge coursework is taught by renowned researchers, graduate students and professional scientists.


Travel to the Big Island of Hawaii where participants examine issues of island life from biodiversity reduction and habitat destruction to coastal storm impacts. Working with native Hawaiians and various nonprofit organizations, students study and address these climate change issues to develop proposals and solutions for combating the effects of climate change.

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Washington D.C.

Analyze and interpret exclusive data collected by Scripps Institution of Oceanography to explore one of today’s pressing environmental issues. Exercise leadership skills by lobbying on Capitol Hill with state Representatives by advocating on issues in a professional, informed and productive way.

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Become a Leader in Caring for the Earth

The UC San Diego Global Environmental Leadership and Sustainability (GELS) programs enable high school students to engage and address environmental issues in the world today.