Environmental Wellness

Your overall wellness is closely tied to your environment. The environmental dimension of wellness helps us evaluate our safety, security and sustainability within nature and our personal environment. Travel and global experiences have a significant impact on the environment, program locations, and your personal surroundings. As you travel for your program, it is an exciting opportunity to explore your relationship with your new environment and learn how minimize your footprint while maximizing your own environmental wellness. 

While this section is focused on environmental wellness, we encourage  you to approach  your global experience holistically--or  whole-istically. Ideally your takeaways from the experience will impact  all of the dimensions of wellness in some way.

Environmental Wellness Tips

  • Remove clutter and keep your space(s) tidy.

  • Ride a bike, walk or take public transportation whenever possible.

  • Spend time in nature by taking a hike, or walk in a local park, camping, swimming and any outdoor activity that you enjoy. 

  • Practice environmentally conscious behaviors such as recycling, composting, energy and water conservation, etc. 

  • Create environments that support well-being at every opportunity (e.g., when you're hosting a party). 

  • Always be aware of the health and safety of your environment (e.g., locate all the emergency exits, wear a helmet when applicable, moderate alcohol consumption, etc.).  

  • Surround yourself with people and things that you find positive and inspiring. 

  • Become aware of accessibility and scarcity of natural resources in your program’s location. Understand your role within the system. 

  • Learn how your host country/city approaches sustainability and environmental wellness. Critically access the pros and cons and bring best practices home with you. 

  • Use the health, wellness and safety resources both at the University of Pittsburgh at on-site.

Environmental wellness requires you to be a good steward of the earth and to recognize and act on the responsibility we share in promoting a healthy environment. Awareness of the scarcity of resources we take for granted—clean water, safety, a comfortable environment indoors, abundance of food—depending on program location, is essential. Hopefully these resources will help you prepare, plan and pack for a safe, sustainable and environmental well-being before, during and after your program.


Student Affairs Environmental Wellness Resources* - Pitt's environmental resources for students.

Environmental Wellness Assessment - Assess your environmental wellness strengths before your program.

CDC National Center for Environmental Health -  Resources to protect people from environmental hazards. 


Tap – Find Water Anywhere - Find water refill stations in 30 countries, including airport terminals - plan where you'll refill your water bottle to reduce waste. Available for iOS and Android.

PackPoint - Travel packing list app - prevent waste by only bringing what you need. Available for iOS and Android.

Articles and Blogs

Eco-friendly Packing List - Suitcase Six's 20 items for sustainable travel. 

10 Sustainable Travel Tips - Sustainable Jungle's tips for the eco-conscious traveler.

How to Create a Healing Environment - University of Minnesota's guidelines to reduce stress in your environment.

Vlogs, Videos, Podcasts

Ecotourism and Responsible Travel Podcast - The Thoughtful Travel Podcast, Episode 118. (26m) 

National Wellness Week: Focus on Environmental Wellness - Animated video on environmental wellness. (1m20s) 

Top 10 Eco-Friendly Travel Tips – Vlog with tips to make your travels and experiences sustainable. (3m34s)


Promoting environmental well-being can help you explore your programs location by interacting with your new environment and personal surroundings with respect and openness. These resources can be used to help you as you travel, explore new parks or trails, and find comfort in your new living space. While you are away, we encourage you to embrace the local customs and approaches to environmental wellness and share your own environmental wellness by creating safe and sustainable environments.


Book Different – Ecofriendly accommodation booking site. 

Environmental Wellness Toolkit – National Institutes of Health's Strategies for improving your environmental health. 


AllTrails – Explore 100,000+ trails worldwide. Available for iOS and Android.

Relax Melodies – White noise/melody app that can help create a more calming environment. Available for iOS and Android.

Trip Whistle - Maps your location and allows you to share your GPS location, also provides emergency contact numbers for over 200 countries. Available for iOS only.

Articles and Blogs

Guide to Eco-friendly travel - Pop Science guide to eco-travel. 

Sustainable Living While Studying Abroad - IES Abroad Blogs on sustainble living abroad. 

Tips for Living with a Foreign Roommate – Go Overseas blog with tips on how to create a comfortable environment with a roommate abroad. 

Vlogs, Videos and Podcasts

12 Cheap & Easy Tips for Reducing Your Waste – Vlog with tips and tricks to reduce waste in your host city. (8m27s)


Focusing on your environmental wellness can help you navigate re-entry challenges. During a global experience, you may have had the opportunity to experience new approaches or perspectives on sustainability, safety and environmental wellness. These resources can help you work on implementing and sharing the new things that you’ve learned and building a safe and sustainable environment upon re-entry. 

For more resources, support and information on re-entry, please visit our Re-Entry/Alumni webpage. 


Pitt Outdoors Club* - Pitt's sponsored outdoors club.

Environmental Health and Safety (EHS)* - Pitt's resources for EHS. 

Student Affairs Environmental Wellness Resources* - Pitt's environmental wellness resources, services and initiaitves.


AllTrails – Explore 100,000+ trails worldwide. Available for iOS and Androids. 

Articles and Blogs

A Post-Study Abroad Perspective on Global Sustainability - A students sustainability perspective after study abroad.

5 Ways to Support Students Learning about Sustainability While Studying Abroad – Global Education Network blog on supporting fellow students to practice sustainability abroad. 

Vlogs, Videos and Podcasts

5 Things I've Learned About Sustainability In Northern Europe – Vlog from a student reflecting on what she learned in Copenhagen about sustainability. What did you learn?