2008-09 Catalog

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Program Description

Toward a Sustainable Puget Sound: Place, People and Policy

Last Updated: 11/25/2008

Fall, Winter and Spring quarters

Faculty: Vauhn Foster-Grahler mathematics, Rob Cole systems science, sustainability, Amy Gould (FW) public policy and management

Major areas of study include environmental studies and ecosystems science, public policy, mathematics, mathematical modeling, writing, anthropology, climate change, sustainability, earth science, systems science, critical reasoning, political science and history.

Class Standing: This all-level program accepts up to 36% 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. Enrollment is opening to upper division students. Contact faculty at Academic Fair or by email. New students should expect to complete some catch-up work during the December break.

In this year-long program, we will weave together the perspectives of the species that have been sustained by Puget Sound (Skookumchuck) using threads from ecosystems ecology, cultural anthropology, American and Native histories, public policy and mathematics. The waters of the Puget Sound have nourished many species since its formation when the most recent ice age ended. Waves of human habitation have benefited from the fecund waters and surrounding land, and humans have impacted the Sound as no other species have. Our present way of being with Puget Sound is not sustainable. In this core program we will address how we arrived at this point and what are appropriate transitions to a sustainable future.

Throughout the year we will weave the disciplinary threads of the program together around three central themes. Fall quarter we will focus on salmon ecology. Winter quarter the central theme of the program will be the present and future use of the water of Puget Sound and Puget Sound drainage. Spring quarter we will examine Puget Sound from the perspective of global climate change. We will map many aspects of the Sound including the hydrological and climatic cycles, the interactions of the terrestrial and marine ecosystems, and the interplay of a rich variety of species in the region. We will pay close attention to public policy through place and time. We will base visions of sustainable futures for the Puget Sound in the perspectives of the First Peoples, early European explorers, settlers of European, African, Asian, and Hispanic heritage, and present day industries and residents. We will explore various measures and indicators of sustainability and investigate new methods and approaches to making our way of life more sustainable. We will conduct audits of our own lifestyles, and examine ways of reducing our impacts on ecosystems.

Students in this program will experience Puget Sound through field trips, workshops, lectures, films, books, and stories. Students can expect to spend time observing, recording, and researching many of the totemic species of the temperate rainforest region, including salmon. Students will reflect on their experiences by keeping journals and through various forms of expression. Students will participate in seminars, collaborative learning activities, small-group research projects and computer labs. During spring quarter, students will complete a final project. Students will have an opportunity to hone their academic and creative writing, math, and critical reasoning skills as well as learn to think in an interdisciplinary manner and with multiple perspectives. A student successfully completing this program will understand the human, ecological, geological and hydrological history of Puget Sound, and the public policy that has shaped and continues to shape human interaction with Puget Sound. In addition, students will have a working understanding of several measures of how their own lifestyle choices impact sustainability in this region. At the completion of this program students will be ready for more advanced college-level work.

Credits: 16 per quarter

Enrollment: 69 Fall, 69 Winter and 46 Spring

Books: www.tescbookstore.com

Special Expenses: Approximately $200 per quarter for field trips around and on the Puget Sound.

Program is preparatory for careers and future studies in environmental studies, public administration, political science, sociology, education and anthropology.

Planning Units: Programs for Freshmen, Environmental Studies, Scientific Inquiry, Society, Politics, Behavior and Change

Program Revisions

Date Revision
July 14th, 2008 This program has changed from Core to Lower Division, and is registering both freshmen and sophomores.
November 19th, 2008 Winter quarter enrollment details added. Program changed to All Level.
November 25th, 2008 Winter enrollment field utilized.