OWU Environmental Studies & Sustainability Progress, Spring 2017

Established and ongoing efforts in environment and sustainability by Ohio Wesleyan students, staff and faculty and off-campus collaborators active during the 2016-17 academic year.

Established and ongoing efforts in environment and sustainability by Ohio Wesleyan students, staff and faculty and off-campus collaborators active during the 2016-17 academic year. 

A PDF of this document is available here.
screen-shot-2017-01-30-at-11-23-34-am

OWU Sustainability Plan: As a liberal arts institution, Ohio Wesleyan University must be a leader in progressive sustainability initiatives through educational, technical, and social means. The proposed Ohio Wesleyan Sustainability Plan (click for PDF) is intended to invigorate and expand a culture of sustainability that has a positive impact on the environment. Draft of the OWU Sustainability Plan, created by faculty, staff and students, is complete and being revised and vetted. Students in our Sustainability Practicum are currently arranging to move the proposed plan through OWU’s administrative network during the spring of 2017.
copy-of-mmo_sticker

May Move Out: A student-initiated project in collaboration with Goodwill, to defer usable materials from the trash as students move off campus in May. We defer 10 tons of reusable furniture, appliances, clothes, bikes, etc. on average, each May. Students are currently meeting with OWU’s Buildings & Grounds and Residential Life staff to plan for and promote the 2017 May Move Out. Ohio Wesleyan’s May Move Out program was awarded the 2015 Recycling Award from the Keep Delaware County Beautiful Coalition.

Reusable Food Containers in Hamilton Williams Campus Center: A student project initiated in the Fall of 2015 is being expanded during the spring of 2017. A new dishwasher was installed in our campus center in part to provide adequate washing of the containers. Students and campus food service staff are working to improve and expand the program during the Spring of 2017.

Environmental Science Major: A proposal for an Environmental Science major (in addition to our 39 year old Environmental Studies major) will be brought before OWU committees and faculty for consideration and approval during the Spring of 2017.

Environmental Studies Minor in Food Studies: A Food Studies Minor (developed from the Food Course Connection) is in place (a collaboration between Health and Human Kinetics [HHK] and Environmental Studies). Two more minors, Sustainability and Climate Science are being developed.

Living Green Infrastructure Proposal: Students and staff are working on a proposal for a Living Green residence hall option. 1) Develop structural sustainability. 2) Allow students to live more sustainably by reducing their water, energy, and material waste. 3) Include workshop/classroom area for sustainable learning (repair, self-production). 4) Trained RA’s to be sustainable life assistants.

Delaware Foodshed Farm and Food Collaboration: Building on the Food Studies Minor and student interest in gardens, farming and food, OWU faculty in Environmental Studies and HHK are developing a collaboration between Stratford Ecological Center farms and the Methodist School of Ohio farms. Initial efforts will focus on student internships and engagement of OWU in a regional food network. With financial support for staff (donations or grants) campus gardens will be developed. Efforts will focus on the practice of ecologically sound farming, food production, regional food networks and social outreach (building on the existing Cooking Matters Program, organized by Dr. Chris Fink) to engage students and community members in growing food.

Environmental and Sustainability Internships: Eight to ten internships are being offered on a regular basis at Stratford Ecological Center and the City of Delaware. Foci include environmental education, marketing, farming, and sustainability. Additional internships will be available at the Seminary Hill Farm (Methodist Theological School of Ohio) Fall 2017.

Global Environmental Change Collaboration & Travel Learning Course: OWU collaboration with Amy Work (OWU ‘04) and her organization GeoPorter in Bahia Ballena-Uvita, Costa Rica. Learning and using environmental assessment methods in Delaware, Ohio (Fall 2017) and during a travel learning course trip (Dr. Nathan Amador’s Geography 347) to coastal Costa Rica (January 2018). Goal: to understand how local environmental data is collected and relates to regional and global climate and environmental change.

Chimney Swift Towers: A collaboration between students and OWU Alumni Dick Tuttle (OWU 1973) to build a chimney swift tower on the residential side of campus. Plans have been drawn up and cost estimates provided by a contractor. Funds will be provided by Tuttle. We anticipate construction during the spring or summer of 2017 pending approval from B&G and OWU’s Administration.

Campus Wildlife Habitat Enhancements: Student efforts continue to install and maintain bird houses, feeders and solitary bee houses on campus.

Green Week 2017: Building on a successful week of events in 2016, students are organizing another week of events for the spring of 2017 (the week prior to Earth Day).

Delaware Run Assessment and Restoration: Ongoing project focused on restoring Delaware Run between Sandusky St. and Henry St. Emerging collaboration with stream restoration specialists who propose restoration of the stream and adjacent riparian zone in return for state of Ohio stream credits. Currently waiting on the establishment of an official Ohio stream banking and credit procedure.

Bottled Water Sales Reduction: Student-led efforts to drive down bottled water purchases on campus, including the installation of hydration stations and promotion of reusable water bottles. Bottled water sales have dropped significantly in the last three years. We continue to install hydration stations (filtered water) at key locations as an alternative to bottled water.

OWU ’17 Michael Durfee: Summer ’16 Diving Internship

Michael Durfee, OWU 2017, is an Environmental Studies and Medieval Studies dual major, and participated in a summer 2016 master diver apprenticeship in Cozumel, Mexico.

massivecoral


Michael Durfee, OWU 2017, is an Environmental Studies and Medieval Studies dual major, and participated in a summer 2016 master diver apprenticeship in Cozumel, Mexico.


Michael Durfee
October 27, 2016

One of the first lessons we are taught as divers is that we are the stewards, the voice of, and the ambassadors of the underwater world. Nobody else has the means to be so intimate with this environment. Even if for no reason other than we love being in it, we must help protect it.

The Professional Association of Diving Instructors (PADI) stresses the importance of the environment throughout a diver’s training. They teach us how to be careful of sensitive aquatic ecosystems (by maintaining good buoyancy, kicking properly, by knowing we won’t be attacked by animals unless we harass them, or simply by not touching things). PADI provides examples in their training books of ways to be active in the fight to keep our waters healthy.

PADI also advertise and teach Project AWARE both as an independent project and movement and as a specialty course for certification (AWARE Fish Identification, AWARE Shark Conservation, AWARE Underwater Naturalist for example). Project AWARE is the environmental movement within diving, started years ago by PADI and broken off into something grander. AWARE stands for Aquatic World Awareness Responsibility and Education. At its most basic we are given its Ten Ways a Diver Can Protect the Underwater Environment. These are: 1) Dive carefully, 2) Be aware of your body and equipment, 3) Keep your dive skills sharp, 4) Consider your actions, 5) Understand and respect underwater life, 6) Be an Ecotourist, 7) Respect underwater cultural heritage, 8) Report environmental disturbances or destruction, 9) Be a role model, and 10) Get involved.

I went to Cozumel, Mexico to earn my PADI Professional Divemaster rating. I chose a very good location for this dive training. Reasons for this are many, but primarily for the fact that the waters surrounding the island are a huge Marine National Park. All divers are required to be extra careful and mindful. For example, nobody is allowed to dive without a local Divemaster. There are extensive, complex coral reefs along the entire west side of the island. There was greater pressure for me to become a better, more skilled diver here. I have confidence in my abilities to observe sensitive organisms without any accidental harm occurring.

gruntscorals

Diving these world famous coral reefs was remarkable and eye opening for me. I can hardly express what I have learned. I am familiar with numerous species of fish and am only just beginning to understand how they interconnect to form this ecosystem. I learned how a coral reef works in its most fundamental sense and how nearby wetlands like Mangroves can be essential to the reef’s continued survival.

Simply by observation while in over 60 dives, I got to see how some aquatic animals rely on the health of their coral environment. Health has multiple aspects.

I’ve chosen a few examples.

The sea turtles around Cozumel, most commonly the Green Sea Turtle and the Loggerhead Turtle, depend on coral reefs for food and protection.

turtThe turtles will lie there chomping on coral, digging at it with their beaks. I may postulate that the type of coral matters, which makes the coral and sponge diversity important to the turtles.The relative shallow depths of these reefs allow turtles to live and feed well while still having fairly quick access to the surface for air. Here is a Green Sea Turtle who was eating but is now looking at the diver taking the photo.

Often while I was diving I thought to myself how odd some of the fish I see are. Many seem to be just generic and what a human might expect, but others not so much. Filefish are one of these oddities. I love to wonder why they look like they do – inspiring research on my part.

snert_fish

Watching The fish feed is the biggest clue. Their mouths are specialized for a certain diet. What exactly they eat I do not know, but they use their outwards-pointing teeth and elongated mouth to scrape their food off the bottom and the coral. Being so specialized may indicate an existence more vulnerable to environmental changes. Of the animal species here, it is the oddities, the curiosities and the fantastic that are the first to leave when conditions change.

drumfishThe Drumfish is one of the most elegant and beautiful species of fish I was ever fortunate enough to observe. They are shy and love to hide under small, shallow ledges. Diversity of structure is one of the most important aspects of coral reef health. In this case, structural diversity allows for the shy to hide their faces and the very shy to hide their entire body. An example of the very shy would include the endemic species to Cozumel, the Splendid Toadfish who hides in a hole day and night.

Another species which appreciates the structural diversity of coral reef systems is the Stonefish, the most poisonous fish in the world.

stonefish

Stonefish are docile, though, and are named for their ability to blend in with their surroundings and look like a stone or piece of coral. They are one reason why divers in the Caribbean try not to touch the reefs. If we imagine a reef that has been bleached or depleted in its various diversities, a Stonefish would not survive.

There are dozens of animals species which rely on the existence of coral reefs and their diversity. A diver’s awareness of this as connected to their choices and advocacy on land is an essential power. We can help advocate for more Marine National parks and sustainable fishing regulations. We can use sustainably produced products which would not create by-product which ends up in the ocean. We can use sustainable energy sources and/or cut back on overall energy consumption. Our mindful choices have a say in whether these beautiful places and animals will survive.

Having learned in a Marine National Park in Cozumel gave me a heightened sense of my duty as a now Professional diver. My Divemaster training stressed that one of my most essential duties is to be a good role model. This means being a skillful and knowledgeable diver, embracing and adhering to PADI Standards (which keep divers and the environment safe) and embracing and adhering to Project AWARE teachings.

Spring 2017 Internships through OWU at the Stratford Ecological Center

Stratford is offering an 8-hour-per-week internship (120 hours total) to Ohio Wesleyan students for Spring 2017. Upon completion of these hours, along with appropriate readings, research projects, and other academic components, students can receive class credit through Ohio Wesleyan.

img_6473-e1465929325839

Internships through OWU at the Stratford Ecological Center

Stratford Ecological Center is a 501(C)(3) that offers a working organic 236-acre education and research farm and nature preserve located on Liberty Rd., approximately 5 miles south from Ohio Wesleyan. Stratford is offering an 8-hour-per-week internship (120 hours total) to Ohio Wesleyan students for Spring 2017. Upon completion of these hours, along with appropriate readings, research projects, and other academic components, students can receive class credit through Ohio Wesleyan. Stratford’s varied programming and many natural environments allow for a range of internship topics, including:

Sustainable Agriculture- How can we raise meat, dairy, fiber and egg producing animals, agronomic and horticultural crops in line with natural cycles, while also producing enough to feed customers and support a business? Interact with goats, sheep, hogs, cattle, and chickens while also learning about crop rotations, farm equipment, and other skills.

Organic Gardening- Learn to start, plant, and raise a variety of fruit and vegetable crops in an organic fashion in the field, garden and greenhouse. Composting is an important skill!

beekeeping-class

Environmental Education– Assist in planning and running field trip programs for kindergarteners and first graders. Develop environmental curricula, educational tools, or adult education classes!

Maple Syrup Production (Agroforestry)- Interested in the way that maple syrup is extracted and made? How does this industry allow forests to be preserved, while also being utilized by humans? (Maple sap used to produce maple syrup only flows for about 6 weeks from February through March, so semester-long internships would require additional subjects, or extended agroforesty research).

Invasive Species Management- This 95 acre State Nature Preserve surrounding three sides of the farm at Stratford requires maintenance in the form of invasive species removal. Learn how to identify and remove these plants, and research their effects on Ohio ecosystems.

screen-shot-2016-10-26-at-10-49-59-am

Apiculture– Shadow our beekeeper to learn about bees and their management, queen rearing, nook production, pollination services, and honey production. Bumblebees are the recommended focus of spring internships, due to the seasonality of bee activity.

Non-profit Management/ Marketing and Development- Learn about the business side of Stratford, including public relations, marketing, advertising, community connection, donor cultivation and management, and grant-writing.

These are just a sample of possible internship topics at Stratford. As an intern, we at Stratford will encourage you to find where our needs and your passions and interests intersect. We’d love to hear your ideas for research, experiential learning and new initiatives using the resources at Stratford!

Please contact Dr. Laurie Anderson at ljanders@owu.edu for permission to register. Students will receive one upper level course credit in the Botany/Microbiology department. The course will be graded satisfactory/unsatisfactory. Limit: 5 students – first come, first served. Students must arrange their own transportation to Stratford Ecological Center. See syllabus on the next page.

Stratford Ecological Center Internship

BOMI 495 – Spring 2017

Instructor for Spring 2017: Dr. Laurie Anderson (BOMI 495)

 

Course Objectives

  • Gain practical experience in organic and sustainable agriculture, environmental education, local ecology, local food issues, land management, non-profit management, and related areas.
  • Build critical thinking, research, and writing skills by pursuing and completing an independent project developed in collaboration with Stratford staff, and submitting a final report on this work.

General Information

Stratford Ecological Center is a 501(C)(3) that offers a working organic 236-acre education and research farm and nature preserve located on Liberty Rd., approximately 5 miles south from Ohio Wesleyan. Stratford offers a 120 hour (average 8 hours per week for 15 weeks) internship to Ohio Wesleyan students. Upon completion of these hours, along with appropriate readings and activities related to a project developed by the student in consultation with the Stratford staff and their faculty advisor at Ohio Wesleyan, students can receive class credit through Ohio Wesleyan. Stratford’s diverse programming and many natural environments allow for a range of subjects for the internship including apiculture, organic gardening, sustainable agriculture, invasive species management, agroforestry and maple syrup production, environmental education, and non-profit management. Projects may explore multiple topics as long as there is a central area of focus.

Students who successfully complete the internship will receive an upper level credit towards graduation and/or their major, but do not receive a letter grade. A grade of S (Satisfactory) or U (Unsatisfactory – no credit received) will be awarded.

Details and Requirements

  • Students are expected to work at Stratford for an average of 8 hours per week for 15 weeks, although weekly deviations up or down from this standard may be required for a particular internship, given the demands of a student’s specific project.
  • Students must submit journal entries biweekly to Blackboard, i.e., on the Friday of weeks 2, 4, 6, 8, 10, 12, and 14 of the semester. These should include reports of your activities, updates on progress, next steps planned, and reflections on what has been learned to date.
  • At minimum, each journal entry should be about two typed, double-spaced pages.
  • Journals should be submitted biweekly, even if you had reduced hours at Stratford during that period. Just submit a statement that explains the situation, and describe plans for the upcoming time period.
  • Journal entries must be submitted on time. Failure to submit two journal entries results in no internship credit.
  • Each student must have at least one mid-semester meeting with their faculty advisor to discuss progress to date. This must be done during weeks 7-9 of the semester. You or your faculty advisor may request additional meetings, as needed.
  • Final Report. This is a final paper describing the student’s project and its findings or outcomes. Each report should be 8-10 double-spaced, typed pages in length, include a background section with references to appropriate sources and an attached bibliography, a description of project goals or hypotheses (if the project is an experiment), a description of activities or methods, and a discussion of project findings or outcomes. The final draft is due no later than the last final exam of the semester. A copy of the Final Report must be submitted to Stratford Ecological Center as well.

 

Preserving a Paradise: The OWU Connection

An Ohio Wesleyan alumna, professors, and students are teaming up and using high-tech geography in Costa Rica to help preserve a rich and wonderful ecosystem.

(Photo by Alejandro Orozco)

An Ohio Wesleyan alumna, professors, and students are teaming up and using high-tech geography in Costa Rica to help preserve a rich and wonderful ecosystem.

Working with Geoporter’s Amy Work ’04 (far left), the OWU team included (from left) Professor John Krygier, Olivia Lease ’17, Michael Durfee ’17, Christopher Pessell ’18, Luke Steffen ’16, Maddy Coalmer ’18, and Assistant Professor Nathan Amador.

Looking out at the lush, vivid greenery around her simple home in Costa Rica, Amy Work ’04 can scarcely believe her good fortune. The sky is a gorgeous blue, a crystal-clear ocean is nearby, colorful tropical birds swoop overhead, and the sunshine is endless.

It’s a far cry from her growing-up years in Westerville and her college years at Ohio Wesleyan University, where weather tended more toward overcast skies and freezing Midwest winters.

“If you would have told me when I was in college that I’d be living in the tropics and working I would have said you’re joking, there is no way,” Work says. “Now I know that anything’s possible.”

A lofty sentiment, to be sure. But one she believes in so firmly that she’s trying to pass it along to other OWU students by inviting them to visit—and learn—in her little piece of paradise.

Work’s life on the eastern coast of Costa Rica centers on something she was introduced to at Ohio Wesleyan: GIS—geographic information system—technology. In its simplest form, it’s a way to display several sets of data on a single map so users can see and analyze the relationships between each. Accessed through computer software, the technology is used in fields ranging from archaeology to mosquito control to politics—anything that can use location as a factor.

GIS technology was growing in popularity in 2000 when Work was an OWU freshman taking a mapping course taught by geology and geography professor John Krygier.

“That class talked about how maps have helped us understand the world over time, and at the end it talked about GIS,” Work says. A follow-up class taught her the nitty-gritty of GIS and convinced her of its power. By the time she graduated in 2004 with a triple major in geography, urban studies, and environmental studies, she knew she wanted to pursue a career centered on GIS.

Work was sharp, focused, and fully engaged in learning about GIS, Krygier says, especially in upper-level courses where students used the technology to help map potential pathways for future Delaware bike paths. Eventually, Delaware created new paths based on the students’ work.

“She’s one of those people who has a vision and can see the parts needed to make it happen,” Krygier says. “What Amy got in that class was that there’s a tool that can make big, good things happen.”

After graduating from Syracuse University with a master’s degree in geography in 2006, Work became an education and GIS coordinator at the Institute for the Application of Geospatial Technology, or IAGT, in Auburn, New York. Through her work there she met Anita and Roger Palmer, founders of GISetc, a for-profit company that helps educators learn to use GIS in the classroom.

Beginning in 2009, the Palmers began traveling to the Costa Rican coastal village of Bahia Ballena to introduce GIS to community leaders, in the hopes the technology would help the village transition from a farming-and-fishing economy to a tourism economy. When it became obvious the couple’s yearly visits weren’t enough for the project to prosper, they asked Work to live and work there full-time.

That’s what she’s done since August 2012. She’s funded by Geoporter, a nonprofit organization set up by Work, the Palmers, and two Bahia Ballena community members. It’s designed to send educators around the world to do exactly what Work is doing in Costa Rica: solve local issues with GIS. This is Geoporter’s first project.

A hallmark of Geoporter is helping communities help themselves, Work explains. “The community members are the ones who are doing it,” she says. “The community has the goals and the objectives, and the focus is on getting community members to use the technology themselves.”

Bahia Ballena leaders decided to tackle trash in the streets with the help of GIS. For a decade, trash had been picked up curbside at homes, but in public places, residents tended to toss it on the ground, Work says. As a result, trash ended up in local streams and then in the ocean, reducing the area’s appeal for tourists.

Work suggested mapping where trash was coming from as a first step. In 2013, she and community members collected trash at specific intervals on the road, counted the kinds of trash found there, and mapped the results using GIS. They found a high concentration of candy wrappers outside grocery stores near schools, for example, from students buying candy on their way home. Soccer fields—popular community gathering spots—had food wrappers and bottles.

“Life in Costa Rica revolves around family, church and soccer, so on Sundays the entire town shows up to watch the games. And there were no trash cans near the soccer fields.” – Amy Work ’04

“Life in Costa Rica revolves around family, church, and soccer, so on Sundays the entire town shows up to watch the games,” Work says. “And there were no trash cans near the soccer fields.”

An analysis of the mapped trash produced action within the year: Trash cans with sections for recyclables and sections for non-recyclables were added where they would reduce the most trash, and an education program encouraged residents to use the cans.

Since then, trash in streams has diminished and more is being recycled—exactly what Geoporter was set up to accomplish.

To spread the word about the success and encourage others to embrace the technology, Work turned to her alma mater. She contacted Krygier, who had first taught her GIS, and his new colleague, Nathanael Amador, and asked: Would Ohio Wesleyan students be interested in working with Geoporter?

The idea jelled when Work returned to the states in 2014 to be inducted into the Ohio Wesleyan Athletic Hall of Fame for her starring role on the Battling Bishops’ national title-winning women’s soccer teams of 2001 and 2002. She talked up her GIS project with Ohio Wesleyan President Rock Jones and by 2015, Amador, with Krygier’s help, was offering a travel-learning course to Costa Rica. Such courses are a core element of The OWU Connection, helping students connect classroom learning with real-world practice in global settings.

“I still feel such a connection to the students at Ohio Wesleyan,” Work says. “I wanted them to see what I’m doing with my degree and to instill in students that you can apply your knowledge to anything and, if you have a passion, follow it.”

The proposal had clicked with Amador, an assistant professor of geology and geography who’d begun working at Ohio Wesleyan in 2014. He was teaching Environmental Alterations, a required class for environmental studies majors, and added the Costa Rica portion as an option for additional class credit.

“What Amy does embodies the point of the course, which is how humans impact the environment,” Amador says. “And it ties together the whole idea of being at Ohio Wesleyan, which is that graduation isn’t the end of your involvement with the University community.”

By December 2015, five students, along with Amador and Krygier, were bumping along the mostly unpaved roads of Costa Rica. Each had completed an environmental project centered on the country before their trip, and their 11-day visit expanded on those projects.

“It’s a good model. Our alumni are spread out all over the world, and I’m hoping other travel-learning courses will take advantage of that.” – John Krygier, professor of geology and geography

Madeleine Coalmer ’18 examined the effects of ecotourism, global warming, and climate change on water supplies in Costa Rica. She wanted to find out what could be done in the future to reduce yearly water shortages during the dry season. She soon realized that even her use of water at home in Youngstown, Ohio, could ultimately affect the water supply in Central America.

“When my mom picked me up from the airport after the trip, the first thing I told her was I’m going to be more cautious of how much water I’m using,” she says.

Coalmer also learned how much opportunity her chosen major, geography, can provide.

“Amy’s work shows that you can be successful and flourish with a geography major, and for her to have taken the same classes in the major that I’m taking meant even more,” Coalmer says. “It showed me that I could reach out to others and have connections all over the world.”

Chris Pessell ’18 of Cincinnati had studied the impact of African palm-oil plantations on the soil, water, animals, and plants of Costa Rica. African palms were brought to the country after Costa Rica’s banana-growing industry shut down. While they’ve helped the economy, native mangrove forests have been destroyed to make way for the plantations.

Pessell’s view of the industry changed when he visited a plantation on the trip. He realized he’d inflated its harm to the environment.

“I assumed it was like a tree farm, but there was a carpet of plants under the trees and a ton of different bugs,” he says. As long as the plantations aren’t expanding, he says, it doesn’t appear they’ll do additional damage to the environment.

Pessell particularly enjoyed another trip project: testing water in the Bahia Ballena area to ensure clean drinking water is available. After the trip, he helped map the data and hopes to add more as additional testing is done periodically.

“Development has encroached on the amount of water available,” Work says. “We’re mapping the water quality and the stream flow to understand what’s happening and to ensure that our dirty water is taken care of.”

The work cemented Pessell’s plan to pursue a career in water-quality testing when he graduates with his geography major.

In addition to the palm-oil plantation, students and professors visited two national parks, a bat sanctuary and a pineapple plantation; kayaked through mangrove forests; and took a whale-watching tour (but, unfortunately, saw no whales.)

Interestingly, neither Work nor Amador had opportunities similar to the Costa Rica trip while they were students.

Work’s plans to travel abroad were dashed by 9/11. Instead of traveling, she applied her GIS knowledge on local projects as a student, such as the bike-trail project.

For Amador, plenty of opportunities for study and travel existed at The Ohio State University where he obtained his undergraduate degree, but he had no money to participate.

“I think part of my passion for this is living through the students, letting them take advantage of these opportunities,” he says. “I was interested in getting students to really understand what it means to study this content outside of the classroom and to understand that people are employed doing what you’re learning in this class.”

“We’re mapping the water quality and the stream flow&hellips;to ensure that our dirty water is taken care of.” – Amy Work

The January trip was the second time an Ohio Wesleyan student had visited Work. The first was a year ago, when graduate Christian Gehrke ’15 took a University drone to Bahia Ballena to capture a birds-eye view of the community. The new imagery updated some from 2011 and has a higher resolution. Work will use it to see changes in the environment over time.

“We don’t have the resources to acquire a drone,” she says. “But the student had the technology to help us advance what we’re doing here.”

Krygier hopes the collaboration with Work spurs similar collaborations with OWU alumni.

“It’s a good model,” he says. “Our alumni are spread out all over the world, and I’m hoping other travel-learning courses will take advantage of that.”

In Costa Rica, the link between alumni and OWU continues. Amador visited this summer to take more water samples, and another OWU student took additional aerial photos with a drone.

Work appreciates the extra hands, the equipment and the enthusiasm that students and professors bring to the Geoporter project, but she also sees the collaboration as a way she’s giving back to the University.

“I want to be able to share with students what the University taught me,” she says. “It provided me with the foundation to know that you can learn and do whatever you want to. It shaped me into what I am today.”


Kathy Lynn Gray is a freelance writer from Columbus, OH.

To learn more about the GIS project and travel-learning course, see flickr.com/photos/geoporter/ and geoporter.net, or contact Amy Work at amy@geoporter.net.

Originally published 09/21/2016 in the OWU Magazine.


 

Internship at the United Nations / Global Sustainability

An internship opportunity from John Romano (OWU 2012) who works for the Transparency, Accountability and Participation (TAP) Network at the United Nations.

Screen Shot 2016-09-14 at 9.36.11 AM

An internship opportunity from John Romano (OWU 2010) who works for the Transparency, Accountability and Participation (TAP) Network at the United Nations.

APPLY HERE

STARTING DATE: ASAP/ DURATION 6 MONTHS

CATEGORY: FULL-TIME (UNPAID) / LOCATION: NEW YORK

Program Overview

The Transparency, Accountability & Participation (TAP) Network is a broad network of civil society organizations (CSOs) that works to ensure that open, inclusive, accountable and effective governance is at the heart of the 2030 Agenda, and that civil society are recognized and mobilized as indispensable partners in the design, implementation of and accountability for sustainable development policies, at all levels.

The TAP Network engages some of the foremost expert organizations on the issues of transparency, accountability and participatory governance. TAP benefits from the invaluable expertise, experiences and unique perspectives of its members, all of whom come together to collaborate on joint work and common positions under the TAP Network umbrella. This work is underpinned by recognition that we maximize reach and influence when many stakeholders speak with a unified voice.

The work of the TAP Network is funded by grants from a group of generous donors, including the Open Society Foundations, Hewlett Foundation and the Omidyar Network.

You can find more about the work of the TAP Network at www.tapnetwork2030.org

Vision:

TAP’s vision for the 2030 Agenda is framed by notions of rule-of-law and the TAP principles of transparency, accountability, and citizen participation, as well as respect for human rights. Effective governance in a 2030 Agenda world requires transparent, participatory and inclusive institutions that are accountable to the very people that the 2030 Agenda intends to engage.

The TAP Network is united in the belief that open, inclusive, accountable and effective governance is both an outcome and an enabler of sustainable and equitable development. The 2030 Agenda framework must promote openness, accountability and effective public institutions, build trust between states and its citizens, and empower civil society to engage in the design, implementation and accountability of public policies, at all levels.

TAP’s work also reflects the will and impetus of the millions of citizens from around the world who voted for ‘an honest and responsive government’ as one of their top priorities in the My World survey – a theme echoed in consultations with people around the world.

Objectives:

To ensure that the TAP principles and inclusive governance underpin the 2030 Agenda, the TAP Network works towards the following objectives:

  • Provide a platform for collaboration between CSOs to mobilize around various TAP issues, working together to produce common positions and statements, and undertake joint advocacy efforts around the 2030 Agenda and related processes.
  • Promote and support the development of transparent, accountable and citizen-inclusive implementation and monitoring mechanisms and processes for the 2030 Agenda framework at all levels.
  • Promote and support active and meaningful civil society engagement in implementation and monitoring mechanisms and processes for the 2030 Agenda framework at all levels.

GENERAL OVERVIEW

The World Federation of United Nations Associations (WFUNA) is the host organization for the TAP Network, which entails accepting and managing grant funds and hosting the project staff.

The World Federation of United Nations Associations (WFUNA) is a global non-profit organization working for a stronger and more effective United Nations. Established in 1946, we represent and coordinate a membership of over 100 United Nations Associations and their thousands of members. We work to build a better world by strengthening and improving the United Nations, through the engagement of people who share a global mindset and support international cooperation- global citizens. Our organization has offices at the United Nations in both New York and Geneva, and hosts interns in both locations. www.wfuna.org

Position Description: TAP Network Intern

TAP is currently seeking an Intern who will support the TAP Network Coordinator in the administrative management of the Network, as well as in advocacy, communications and knowledge management for the issue of transparency and accountability in the 2030 Agenda. The intern contract will run for six months.

He/she also will have general WFUNA staff duties.
He/she reports to TAP’s Coordinator
The position is based in WFUNA’s New York office.
To apply the applicant must have a valid U.S. work permit
The main responsibilities of the position will include the following:

  • Assist the TAP Network Coordinator in following all relevant UN processes related to the 2030 Agenda and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)
    Lead TAP Network’s communications and outreach activities, including website, social media and newsletter.
  • Attend relevant meetings related to the 2030 Agenda and liaise with relevant civil society representatives, UN personnel and diplomats as needed;
  • Coordinate relevant meetings, conference calls and events for the Network, and generate agendas, minutes and any other materials needed to advance TAP coordination and advocacy
  • Support the TAP Coordinator and TAP Steering Committee in coordination of TAP Network activities and work
  • Assist in administrative duties and overall grant management for the programme

INTERN OPPORTUNITIES

  • Access to UN Headquarters in New York: conferences, events and resources
    Professional Development
  • Networking opportunities and ability to liaise with UN staff, diplomats, civil society members from around the world

REQUIREMENTS:

  • Undergraduate degree or higher
  • Applicant must be self-motivated, energetic, vigilant about staying on tasks and meeting deadlines, and willing to engage in such outreach tasks as cold calling
    Strong communications (verbal and written), and solid organizational skills are necessary
  • Experience with social media and website management (experience with WordPress is a plus)
  • Interest in international affairs, sustainable development and good governance
  • Fluency in English is required; knowledge of a foreign language is a plus
    Preference will be given to candidates who possess prior experience/knowledge
  • of the United Nations system and political processes

OWU Food Minor & Association for the Study of Food & Society

The September 2016 Newsletter of the Association for the Study of Food and Society (ASFS) includes information about OWU’s new Food Minor. It is worth taking a look at the newsletter and also the ASFS organization to get a sense of the breadth of ideas and topics within the emerging field of food studies / food and society.

Screen Shot 2016-09-12 at 11.57.05 AM

Dr. Chris Fink passed along a link to the September 2016 Newsletter of the Association for the Study of Food and Society (ASFS) which includes information about OWU’s new Food Minor (detailed in an earlier post).

It is worth taking a look at the newsletter and also the ASFS organization to get a sense of the breadth of ideas and topics within the emerging field of food studies / food and society.

 

Screen Shot 2016-09-12 at 12.00.36 PM

 

For more information about OWU’s new Food Minor please contact Dr. Fink or Dr. Anderson.

 

OWU Food Minor Approved for Fall of 2016

Ohio Wesleyan Faculty approved a minor in Food Studies beginning the fall of 2016. The minor is being facilitated by the Health and Human Kinetics Department and Environmental Studies Program.

Wake-Up

Ohio Wesleyan Faculty approved a minor in Food Studies beginning the fall of 2016. The minor is being facilitated by the Health and Human Kinetics Department and Environmental Studies Program. We are calling the new minor a Mentored Minor as the program has a significant amount of engaged work (at least two semesters of internships or independent study)

Details about the Food minor are in the 2016-2017 OWU Catalog, and are listed below. Please contact Dr. Christopher Fink, Dr. Laurie Anderson, or Dr. John Krygier for more information.

Food Studies Mentored Minor

The Food Studies mentored minor is overseen collaboratively by the OWU Department of Health & Human Kinetics and the Environmental Studies Program, and views food from a multidisciplinary perspective. We recognize the importance of food as biological fuel, as a natural resource with problems of abundance and scarcity, as a focus of celebration, as a human obsession, as a cultural expression, as a multi-billion dollar industry, and as an interaction with the global environment through agriculture and waste disposal. By studying food across a range of disciplines, students in this minor will improve their ability to investigate, debate, and solve some of the most important problems affecting the human condition in the 21st century, including food scarcity, malnutrition, obesity, preserving cultural heritage in a global society, and feeding people in a world of 7 billion and more.

Requirements

To complete the mentored minor, a student must:

  • Identify an owu faculty member associated with the Food Studies minor to serve as their mentor
  • Create A proposal, in collaboration with their mentor, to the food studies faculty contacts, outlining courses and projects that fit with their specific interests in food.
  • Complete 5.5 units of coursework, consisting of:
    • 3 units of courses selected from the list below, 1 unit from each of 3 different departments.
    • The 0.5 unit interdisciplinary Food Seminar (after completion of at least 1 full unit food course)
    • 2 project-based units (Independent Study, Directed Readings, Internship).

Courses

The following are the courses that can be used for the 3 non-seminar and non-project courses required in the minor. As a reminder, students must take the 0.5 unit Interdisciplinary Food Seminar (INT 300.6 – Interdisciplinary Food Seminar), and select three other courses, representing three different departments. They must complete at least 1 full unit of coursework from this list before enrolling in the Food Seminar. The Food Seminar will be offered in alternating years.

  • BIOL 122 – Organisms and their Environment (Anderson, Downing, Hankison, Johnson, Kelly, Reichard)
  • BOMI 103 – Biology of Cultivated Plants (Murray)
  • BOMI 106 – Enology (summer only) (Goldstein)
  • BOMI 107 – Food (summer only) (Wolverton)
  • BOMI 233 – Ecology and the Human Future (Anderson)
  • CMLT 110 – Myth, Legend, and Folklore of the European Continent (Merkel)
  • ENG 145 – Reading: The Global Kitchen (Comorau)
  • GEOG 499 – Sustainability Practicum (Krygier)
  • HHK 114 – Personal Health (Fink, Busch)
  • HHK 270 – Sport and Exercise Nutrition (Fink, Staff)
  • HHK 347 – Special Topics in HHK: A Qualitative Inquiry (Fink)
  • HHK 300.8 (0.5 unit) – Health Program Planning (Fink) and HHK 300.9 (0.5 unit) – Health Education Instructional Methods (Fink)
  • PHIL 250 – Environmental Ethics (Stone-Mediatore)
  • PSYC 262 – Health Psychology (DiLillo)
  • SOAN 111 – Cultural Anthropology (Howard, Peoples)
  • SOAN 347 – Health, Illness, Disability and Dying (Howard)
  • SOAN 367 – Human Ecology (Peoples)
  • ZOOL 101 – Human Biology (Kelly)
  • ZOOL 325 – Human Physiology (Kelly)
  • ZOOL 335 – Ecological and Evolutionary Physiology (Kelly)

Mentors

A current list of mentors can be obtained from the faculty contacts for this minor, Dr. Laurie Anderson (Botany/Microbiology), and Dr. Christopher Fink (Health & Human Kinetics). Faculty mentors will oversee the development of proposals from students, and may also serve as the faculty supervisors of independent studies, directed readings, or apprenticeships.

Food Studies Mentored Minor Faculty Contacts

Dr. Christopher fink (Health & Human kinetics) and Dr. Laurie Anderson (Botany/Microbiology)

 

Summer at the Philmont Scout Ranch: Luke Steffen, OWU 2016

Before starting a job this fall, Spring 2016 Geography and Theater graduate Luke Steffen spent his summer working at the Philmont Scout Ranch in New Mexico.

Top row, from left to right: Luke Steffen, Stuart Babcock, Ricky Yates. Bottom row, from left to right: Rachel Cordeiro, Martha Boucher.
Before starting a job this fall, Spring 2016 Geography and Theater graduate Luke Steffen spent his summer working at the Philmont Scout Ranch in New Mexico.

The Philmont Scout Ranch is the largest High Adventure Scout Camp in the United States of America, encompassing 214 square miles, with programs in neighboring ranches, wilderness areas, and national parks. It is located north of Cimarron, NM, near Taos, an area that encompasses cool mountain forests, desert, and prairie. It was started by Waite Phillips, a wealthy oil executive from Oklahoma who owned ranches out west. In 1938, he donated his property in New Mexico to the Boy Scouts of America, along with an office building in Oklahoma so that the Boy Scouts could rent out office space in order to pay for the maintenance of the massive property. His only conditions of the deal were that at least part of Philmont would remain a fully functional free range cattle ranch, that any member of the Phillips family would be allowed to visit at any time, and that his favorite horse would be taken care of until his death.

Philmont_Scout_Ranch_Tooth_of_Time_2004

Boy Scouts of America has kept its promises to Waite Phillips; cattle often roam in the valleys, meadows and prairies of the property and are cared for by an excellent team of wranglers. In addition to the ranch, there are many other programs at this massive camp. In Base Camp, there is the Seton Memorial Library and Boy Scout Museum, the Philmont Training Center, the ranch headquarters, and the Villa Philmonte, which was Waite Phillip’s old mansion. In the backcountry, there are camps that offer programs such as gun shooting, burro racing, old western folk crafts, rock climbing, meteorology, fishing, historical reenactment, and musical performances.


13524404_10204956808999419_5022961507994365506_nSome Camp sites are “interpretive,” meaning that they are set in a certain time in the history of the region and the staff are dressed in period clothing, portraying people from that particular time and place. For example, there is Miranda, a beaver trapping mountain man camp set in 1838 that features trap demonstrations and blackpowder rifle shooting, rich cabins, a real homestead settled by Austrian immigrants in the Edwardian era with livestock and farm chores. Cypher’s Mine is a 1912 gold mine that gives mine tours, forge demonstrations, and an evening show. Crater Lake is a logging camp set in 1915 where the campers get to climb wooden spar poles. Other sites are set in the present and focus on an activity like those described above. Scout troops on trek often hike through these backcountry camps and participate in the programs. The conservation department, meanwhile, goes back and forth between base camp and the backcountry, working to prevent pollution or overconsumption, suppress excessive erosion, control wildfires, and maintain trails. The conservation team includes roving work crews, environmental educators, two sustainability watch dogs (who keep track of Philmont’s garbology), invasive species specialists, and a GIS team. The ranch department also straddles both areas of Philmont because they care for the animals in base camp but lead the herds of beef cattle through various meadows in the backcountry.

PM17_CrookedCreekBurroThis summer, I work as a program counselor at Crooked Creek, an interpretive camp set in 1875. We are a family of three brothers, two sisters, and a family friend from Johnson County, Tennessee. We came to the New Mexico Territory in 1869 after our father, a union sympathizer during the Civil War, was killed by confederate soldiers and our mother died of tuberculosis. My coworkers and I give tours of and maintain our period correct cabin, chop and buck wood would for our stove (we do not have propane), and take care of our cow and calf, two burros, two goats, rooster, two hens and seven adolescent Rhode Island Red chickens, all in period garb! We have a poop flinging contest in the evening, where we clean out the pens, followed by a porch show where we sing mid-19th century folk songs. Because there are no roads near by, we haul our supplies in on the backs of our burros! Poop and burrows! What a summer.

In short, I highly recommend applying to work at Philmont to anyone, whether you are currently involved in the BSA or not. It is great fun  for anyone who loves working in the outdoors and will be an excellent learning opportunity for anyone with an academic interest in history, archeology, geology, theatre, music, history, geography, botany, or zoology. Apply in fall 2016 for summer of 2017!


20160602_Gabriel_Scarlett_2016_CrookedCreek_SILLY013

Mapping / GIS / Water Quality Internships at Delaware County Water Company

Two paid internships at Delaware County Water Company (just a few miles south of OWU’s campus) are currently available.

Screen Shot 2016-04-05 at 7.52.58 PM

Two paid internships at Delaware County Water Company (just a few miles south of OWU’s campus) are currently available. Contact email for both internships is information@delcowater.com


GIS/GPS Data Collection Intern: Assist in the collection of the Del-Co Geographic Information System (GIS) Data. See PDF below for more information.

Screen Shot 2016-04-05 at 7.57.56 PM


Water Quality Technician – Intern: Essential duties include: assist in the development of Del-Co watershed and source water protection strategies, perform water quality sampling of Del-Co reservoirs, receiving streams, source water, and watershed. See PDF below for more information.

Screen Shot 2016-04-05 at 7.57.41 PM


 

Farm / Food / Environmental / Sustainability Internships at Stratford and Methodist Theological School of Ohio

Ohio Wesleyan is offering several internships at two locations for the Fall 2016 semester. Opportunities are at the Stratford Ecological Center and the Seminary Hill Farm, part of the Methodist Theological School. Both are just south of OWU’s campus.

Screen Shot 2016-04-03 at 9.48.34 AM

Screen Shot 2016-04-03 at 9.53.15 AM

Screen Shot 2016-04-03 at 9.50.36 AM

Ohio Wesleyan is offering several internships at two locations for the Fall 2016 semester. Opportunities are at the Stratford Ecological Center and the Seminary Hill Farm, part of the Methodist Theological School. Both are just south of OWU’s campus.

Opportunities at the Stratford Ecological Center are detailed in the flyer below (click for PDF).

Screen Shot 2016-04-03 at 10.04.04 AM

Opportunities at the Seminary Hill Farm, part of the Methodist Theological School of Ohio are detailed in the flyer below (click for PDF).

Screen Shot 2016-04-03 at 10.02.52 AM

The internships can count towards your Environmental Studies independent study requirement (for ES majors). They will also count towards the proposed Food Minor (to be voted on by faculty later this month). Yes we have transportation options for carless interns. Yes I will accept a bushel of rutabagas you grow as part of the internship.