2008-09 Catalog

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Program Description

The Olympic Peninsula

Last Updated: 12/04/2008

Fall and Winter quarters

Faculty: Dylan Fischer forest ecology, Karen Gaul sustainability, John Longino (F) entomology, Paul Butler (W) geology, hydrology

Major areas of study include forest ecology, cultural anthropology, entomology, hydrology, geology, place-based studies and land management studies.

Class Standing: This all-level program accepts up to 25% freshmen as well as supporting and encouraging those ready for advanced work.

Accepts Winter Enrollment: This program will accept new students who have appropriate background. Contact faculty by email. New students should expect to complete some catch-up work during the December break.

The Olympic Peninsula provides natural resources, recreational opportunities, beauty and enjoyment for residents living in the region. It is a site of unique watersheds, plants, animals and cultural histories. For both native and non-native human residents, it has served as a homeland from which people have fulfilled subsistence needs and found aesthetic enjoyment. Learning about the Olympic Peninsula in an interdisciplinary way will deepen our understanding of the bioregion in which we live, and help us to consider a sustainable future.

Three central themes drive this program. First, we will explore in depth the geography, culture, ecology, biodiversity, geology and hydrology of the Olympic Peninsula. Second, we will study how organisms have adapted to significant changes over both human and geologic time in the region. Third, we will analyze human responses to the bioregion, what our impact has been, and the long-term prospects for sustainability.

Fall quarter will focus on geography, culture, botany, entomology and wilderness versus land management trade-offs on the Peninsula. An optional 5-day backpacking trip before the start of fall quarter will give interested students a chance to "jump-start" their participation in program work. During winter, we will explore the hydrology and geology of the region when an earth scientist will join our teaching team. During both fall and winter quarters, we will examine a range of human interactions with the lands and waters of the Peninsula. We will consider various forms of resource use, the sustainability of these practices, and observe ways that the landscape has been altered by humans. We will also consider the ways this place is culturally meaningful to the people who live there.

Students can expect to participate in seminars, lectures, workshops, field trips and field research. During fall quarter, we will circumnavigate the peninsula during a 4-day field excursion. Throughout the program, we will take one-day field trips to nearby river basins. Field work will also make use of the Evergreen campus.

Credits: 16 per quarter

Enrollment: 72

Books: www.tescbookstore.com

Special Expenses: Approximately $200 for multiple day field trip in fall quarter.

Program is preparatory for careers and future studies in ecology, anthropology, geology, entomology, public land management and sustainability.

Planning Units: Programs for Freshmen, Environmental Studies

Program Revisions

Date Revision
December 4th, 2008 Winter enrollment details added.