Energy Immersion Trips

March 13-23, 2024

Spring Break Appalachia Immersion Trip

The spring break 2024 Energy Immersion Trip to Appalachia, co-sponsored by the Irving Institute and Sustainability Office, takes place March 13-23, 2024. 

The Appalachia Energy Immersion Trip is an experiential learning opportunity bringing students to the heart of America's coal industry – a historically important place for our national energy system that continues to prove its relevance in the shaping of our nation's energy policies. The ten-day trip will travel throughout West Virginia to explore the history and legacy of coal extraction on the people, landscape, environment, and economy of West Virginia, as well as the region's shift to a different future. Students will interact with people working in diverse areas of the industry – energy producers, community organizations, political leaders, and more –to learn about West Virginia's transition to a cleaner energy system, including development of transitional resources like natural gas and renewable energy sources like wind, solar, and geothermal. 

The coal industry has been integral in shaping the region's cultural identity, so how might a region adapt and change when this industry is diminishing? What is the future of energy in Appalachia, and how can we reach this future in an equitable way that does not repeat the mistakes of past extractive industries? And what is our role in the energy system as consumers of energy, and how can we contribute to a just transition?  These questions will drive our Appalachian experience.

Check out the Appalachia immersion trip blog and the immersion trip video from past years to learn more! 


An estimated $250 covers all travel expenses, programming, housing, and food for the entire duration of the trip. Need-based financial aid is available up to 100% through an application and approval process following acceptance to the program. Cost will not be a barrier to participation in this program; please apply and we will work with you to make the trip possible, if accepted.