Welcome


Click on the above photo for a video of the Soltis Center: A video transcript is available in PDF format: PDF version


Howdy! Welcome to the website of the Soltis Center for Research and Education. The Center in Costa Rica was established in January 2009 as a result of the vision and generous donation of Mr. Bill Soltis and his wife, Wanda. Bill Soltis is a former Texas A&M University student from the graduating class of 1955. His vision was to provide international experiences for Aggies while protecting the unique ecological setting around the Center and creating preservation awareness.

In accordance with Texas A&M University's goals as outlined in Vision 2020, the Soltis Center's main objective is to support the University's research, education, and outreach initiatives in Costa Rica and throughout the Central American region. Likewise, through the Center, the University seeks to promote and support the sustainable use and conservation of tropical biodiversity in Costa Rica while encouraging the social and economic development of its local inhabitants.

The Center offers a unique setting for the development of multi-disciplinary research activities service projects and study abroad courses. The possibilities for research and educational activities at the Center are endless. The modern facilities of the Center include dorms, a cafeteria, multiple use areas, labs, classrooms, internet access, and a video conference room, all wheel-chair accessible, along with more than 250 acres of primary and secondary growth forests. The closest community, San Juan de Penas Blancas, is just five minutes away from the Center, where approximately 50 families depend on subsistence farming. The town of La Fortuna, the third most important tourist destination on Costa Rica is located about 30 minutes from the Center. This town is near the Arenal Volcano and lake.

I invite you to browse this web page to gain a greater understanding of our mission, values, and objectives, and to gain some insight into the ways in which Texas A&M University is engaged in Costa Rica. Please do not hesitate to contact the staff at the Soltis Center or the Office for International Affairs for more information about our programs, our University, or our activities in the region. Together, we can develop new programs to further the Center's goals.
 

Dr. Eugenio Gonzalez

Director of the Soltis Center for Research and Education in Costa Rica