Thursday, May 4, 2017

TLCI 492 - Teaching about Food, Farming, and the Environment



iSEE Congress 2017: “Building Resilience to Climate Change”

Click here to see this online

The Institute for Sustainability, Energy and Environment (iSEE) at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign invites you and your students to attend a major climate conference this September.

iSEE Congress 2017:
“Building Resilience
to Climate Change”
Sept. 18-20, 2017
Alice Campbell Alumni Center
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign


The annual iSEE Congress exists to assemble leading national and international scientists from different disciplines to advance scientific understanding about state-of-the-art knowledge on the impacts of climate change on the agricultural sector, on ecosystem services, and on human livelihoods and wellbeing, particularly among the most vulnerable sections of society.
This year, we're especially excited to welcome John Holdren, former White House Director for Science and Technology Policy, for a keynote address on Sept. 18. This will be followed by plenary sessions Sept. 19-20.
As instructors, researchers, and experts in the fields of energy, agriculture, sustainability, economics, environment, and atmospheric science, your perspectives — and the perspectives of your colleagues and students — are invaluable to this conversation. Our previous iSEE Congresses have been attended by more than 300 faculty, students and others. These events have stimulated critical thinking on the grand challenges facing society.

Contact us at sustainability@illinois.edu with questions about the Congress.

Monday, May 1, 2017

Wetland Scientist with Engineering Resource Associates

Engineering Resource Associates, Inc. is seeking a highly motivated Wetland Scientist to work in our Warrenville, IL office. The primary role of this position is to perform environmental field and reporting tasks associated with: wetland delineations, stream quality assessments, wetland and stream mitigation design and monitoring, wildlife habitat evaluations, endangered species habitat assessments and surveys, rare plant surveys, impact assessment and mitigation planning, construction observation and vegetation monitoring. Must be comfortable working in physically challenging outdoor situations in all types of weather and be willing to travel on a regular basis to sites in Northeastern Illinois. However, travel to central/southern Illinois, Indiana and Wisconsin may be required occasionally. The ideal candidate will have graduated from an accredited college or university with a BS in Biology/Ecology/Natural Resources or related field in addition to the qualifications listed below:
          Knowledge of Midwest flora, fauna, and natural systems; 
          U.S. Army Corps of Engineers 40 hour wetland delineation training;
          Experience with municipal, state, and federal environmental and wetland regulations, permitting, and policy as well as Clean Water Act Section 401/404 permitting;
          Certification as a Professional Wetlands Scientist (PWS) or Wetland Professional In Training (WPIT), Certified Erosion Control Specialist (CPESC), or certified wetland scientist in any/all of the Cook County collar county programs preferred;
          Excellent communication skills, both oral and technical writing;
          Strong problem solving and critical thinking skills;
          Project coordinator for client contact, scheduling tasks and interaction with reviewing agencies and other stakeholders;
          Ability to multi-task and take on multiple projects at a time;
          Experience with basic computer programs - MS Word, Excel, and PowerPoint;
          Experience with statistics, GPS, ArcGIS or AutoCAD;
          Proficiency in technical and business writing;
          Candidate must be organized, self-motivated, dependable, personable, and able to multi-task and work effectively as a team player;
          Salary will be commensurate with experience.

Engineering Resource Associates (ERA) offers a professional work environment with competitive benefits and compensation package as well as exceptional learning opportunities. If you are interested in this position please send resumes to Tiffany Engelhardt at tengelhardt@eraconsultants.com.

About our Firm
Engineering Resource Associates, Inc. (ERA) is a consulting firm providing civil engineering, structural engineering, environmental science, and land surveying services to clients throughout Illinois, Indiana and Wisconsin. Our diverse clientele includes municipalities, park districts, forest preserve districts, sanitary districts, county agencies, state agencies and private entities. We have more than two decades of experience identifying and working with a wide variety of local, state and federal funding sources. Our staff of professionals includes licensed professional engineers, structural engineers, surveyors, environmental scientists, certified floodplain managers and CAD/GIS specialists.

Our firm specializes in providing comprehensive services throughout the planning, design and construction phases of engineering and environmental assignments. The following is a partial listing of the primary types of projects that have been successfully completed by our firm.
             Water Resource Projects – Master Plans, Watershed Studies, Ordinance/Guidance Manuals, Storm/Sanitary Modeling, Floodplain Mapping, Stream Restoration, Levee Certification, and CRS Services
             Transportation Projects – Roadways, Intersections, Streetscape, Lighting and Parking Facilities
             Infrastructure Projects – Sanitary Sewers, Storm Sewers, Water Mains, and Pumping Stations
             Structural Projects – Bridges, Retaining Walls, Buildings and Structural Forensics
             Environmental Projects – Wetland Facilities, Stream Bank Stabilization, Best Management Practices, and Natural Area Restoration
             Recreational Projects – Riverwalks, Golf Courses, Bicycle and multi-use Trails and Community Parks
             Surveying and Mapping Projects – Topographic Surveys, Boundary Surveys, Construction Layout and GIS Services

             Construction Assistance – Full and/or part time Resident Engineering, Site Observation, Construction Administration and Record Drawing Submittals

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Grow-mobile with the DeKalb County Community Gardens

DeKalb County Community Gardens will be running a program this summer called the Grow-mobile. The Grow-mobile is a pop-up food market and education center. The program is designed to increase outreach to many parts of our county. Specifically, the program aims to reach out to those who are in food deserts. The Grow-mobile will be making weekly visits to a different location, setting up at a community centered location, and providing fresh vegetables and education surrounding healthy eating and nutrition. The Program will start around the second week in May and continue until the end of August. Volunteers will be expected to spend 1 day out of the week, and participate in community outreach. If you are interested please contact Moria Nagy at mnagy85@hotmail.com. Thank you!

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

DANTA Tropical Biology Field Courses 2017

DANTA Tropical Biology Field Courses 2017
 
Do you have an interest in wildlife, tropical ecology and/or conservation?
 
Are you looking to gain valuable field experience?
 
Would you like to learn about other cultures?
 
Would you like to learn more about yourself?
 
Danta is pleased to announce our 2017 field courses in tropical biology. Our course are intended for undergraduates or early graduate level students who have a keen interest in tropical ecosystems and conservation, but have little or no experience of working in a tropical environment. Participants may enroll on either a credit or non-credit basis.
 
DANTA operates on a cooperative and collaborative teaching model with multiple international instructors on each course. Co-instruction allows for more individualized instruction, and the sharing and appreciation of different ideas. Visiting scholars are often incorporated into the curriculum to broaden student experience.
 
As much of our advertising is done by word-of-mouth, we encourage you to spread the word by forwarding this information to students or friends who may be interested in our programs.

For more information, please visit our website at www.DANTA.info and/or email conservation@danta.info. You can find us on Facebook and Twitter. For an alumni perspective on our programs, please see our new blog DANTAisms http://dantablog.wordpress.com/.

Hope to see you in Costa Rica!
 
Methods in Primate Behavior and Conservation
Dates: July 15 – July 30, 2017
Program Fee: $2500
Application deadline: Summer Session: June 1, 2017
Course Description
This course is designed to provide students with field experience in primate behavior, ecology, and conservation. This course will be held at Osa Conservation’s Piro Reseach Station in Costa Rica’s spectacular Osa peninsula. As the one of the largest tracts of rain forest north of the Amazon (roughly 400,000 acres in the Osa Conservation Area), it is renowned for high species diversity. It is one of only a few places in Costa Rica that has jaguar, puma, sea turtles and four species of monkey (mantled howler monkey, black-handed spider monkey, white-faced capuchin and squirrel monkey).

The learning experiences for the course fall into four main categories: field exercises, seminars, lectures, and applied conservation. The field exercises and seminars provide instruction and experience in: (1) methods of measuring environmental variables, including assessment of resource availability, (2) methods of collecting and analyzing the behavior of free-ranging primates, (3) assessments of biodiversity and (4) techniques for estimating population size. Lecture topics will cover the behavior and ecology of Old and New World primates from an evolutionary perspective. Selected lecture topics include primate sociality, feeding ecology, taxonomy, rain forest ecosystems and conservation. Service learning is a large component of all our programs. Students will gain experience in applied conservation through participation in Osa Conservation’s reforestation, sustainable agriculture and wildlife monitoring programs (big cat and sea turtle).

During the course participants will visit a wildlife rehabilitation center, sustainable chocolate plantation, and take a boat tour of the Golfo Dulce for dolphin viewing and snorkeling. We overnight on the Boruca Indigenous Reserve where we will learn about the community and their traditional lifeways, and help with needed projects. All within country travel is in cooperation with Planet Conservation, our sustainable travel partner. Every effort is made to implement eco-friendly and socially responsible practices into our day-to-day operations, field courses and overall mission.

Enrollment is limited to 15 students. The course is open to both credit and non-credit seeking students. University credit can be arranged through your home institution.
Primate Behavior and Conservation
Dates: June 15-July 10, 2017
Program Fee: $3500
Application deadline: May 15, 2017
Course Description
This course is designed to provide students with field experience in primate behavior, ecology, and conservation. The course will be conducted at Osa Conservation‘s Piro Research Station in Costa Rica’s spectacular Osa peninsula. As the one of the largest tracts of rain forest north of the Amazon (roughly 400,000 acres in the Osa Conservation Area), it is renowned for high species diversity. It is one of only a few sites in Costa Rica that contain 4 species of primate (mantled howler monkey, black-handed spider monkey, white-faced capuchin and squirrel monkey). Four species of sea turtle also nest along its beaches. Please help us protect this unique region which is of international conservation concern.

The learning experiences for the course fall into five main categories: field exercises, independent research, discussions, lectures and applied conservation. The first half of the courses is devoted to learning ecological field techniques, while in the second half students develop, carry out and present data from their independent research projects. Many of our participants have gone on to present their work at national and regional conferences. The field exercises and seminars provide instruction and experience in:(1) methods of measuring environmental variables, including assessment of resource availability, (2) methods of collecting and analyzing the behavior of free-ranging primates, (3) assessments of biodiversity and (4) techniques for estimating population size. Lecture topics will cover the behavior and ecology of Old and New World primates from an evolutionary perspective. Selected lecture topics include primate sociality, feeding ecology, taxonomy, rain forest ecosystems, conservation, climate change and sustainability. Participants gain experience in applied conservation through participation in Osa Conservation’s reforestation,and sea turtle breeding and monitoring programs.

During the course participants will visit a wildlife rehabilitation center, sustainable chocolate plantation, and take a boat tour of the Golfo Dulce for dolphin viewing and snorkeling. We overnight on the Boruca Indigenous Reserve where we will learn about the community and their traditional lifeways, and help with needed projects. All within country travel is in cooperation with Planet Conservation, our sustainable travel partner. Every effort is made to implement eco-friendly and socially responsible practices into our day-to-day operations, field courses and overall mission.

Enrollment is limited to 15 students. The course is open to both credit and non-credit seeking students. University credit can be arranged through your home institution.
Birds of Costa Rica
Dates: July 15 – July 30, 2017
Program Fee: $2500
Application Deadline: June 1, 2017
Course Description
Costa Rica is justly renowned for its extraordinary bird diversity, and for the depth of study that has focused on the life histories of these delightful animals, often so social, colorful and full of song.  We will take advantage of these highlights, with a course designed around the ecology and behavior of some of Costa Rica’s most easily seen (and heard) birds, and the biologists who have studied them.  Knowing the history of bird studies in Costa Rica will help us understand these birds more fully, and will also let us see how growth in knowledge of their biology was linked to the vibrant conservation movement that has helped to define this country.
We will base our studies at the remote but comfortable Piro Research Station on Costa Rica’s spectacular Osa Peninsula, home to some of Central America’s last remaining primary forest and its wildest beaches.  Our Piro studies will focus on four key topics:
1.      Learning to identify birds by sight and sound. While no one can expect to learn all of Costa Rica’s birds in 2 weeks, students will become familiar with the most common species found on the Osa in early January, at the start of the dry season;
2.      Methods of collecting and analyzing the behavior of free-ranging birds. Here we will focus on birds easily seen, designing short but focused studies on such topics as foraging, habitat choice, interactions within flocks, and song (we will have access to basic equipment for recording and analyzing song).
3.      Patterns of species diversity: here we will look broadly, and from an ecological and evolutionary perspective, at what kinds of birds are found in Costa Rica.  Why, for example, are there dozen of species of hummingbirds and flycatchers, but far fewer parrots, pigeons and quail?
4.      Key studies of Costa Rican birds: some of the giants in American ornithology have spent their careers researching Costa Rican birds. We will pick highlights from these studies, gaining an understanding not only of how ornithology is done, but also of what topics emerged from these studies and how they helped shape conservation in Costa Rica.

Students are welcomed from all walks of biology, but a background in biology is not a prerequisite; key is a keen desire to learn more about Costa Rican birds and ornithology.  Physical demands in this course are modest but real; students can expect to walk 2-3 kilometers/day, occasionally in uncomfortable weather (heat, rain). Good binoculars are key to studying birds: students are encouraged to bring their own, but a few loaner pairs will be available to those who don’t have them.

During the course participants will visit a wildlife rehabilitation center, sustainable chocolate plantation, and take a boat tour of the Golfo Dulce for dolphin viewing and snorkeling. We overnight on the Boruca Indigenous Reserve where we will learn about the community and their traditional lifeways, and help with needed projects. All within country travel is in cooperation with Planet Conservation, our sustainable travel partner. Every effort is made to implement eco-friendly and socially responsible practices into our day-to-day operations, field courses and overall mission.

Enrollment is limited to 15 students. The course is open to both credit and non-credit seeking students. University credit can be arranged through your home institution.

Wildlife Conservation and Sustainability
 
Dates: August 2-17, 2017
Program fee: $2500
Application deadline: June 1, 2017
 
Course Description
 
The proximate and ultimate causes of declines of rain forest habitats and biodiversity will be examined through a combination of direct observations in the field, lectures, and critical reviews of the literature. Topics will include the role of hunting, logging, agriculture, disease, predation, expanding human populations and their consumption of natural resources as they affect forest and biodiversity conservation. Emphasis will be on sustainable solutions and how today’s human societies can endure in the face of climate change, ecosystem degradation and resource limitations.
 
The majority of the course will be conducted at Osa Conservation‘s Piro Research Station in Costa Rica’s spectacular Osa Peninsula. As one of the largest tracts of rain forest north of the Amazon (roughly 400,000 acres in the Osa Conservation Area), it is renowned for high species diversity. It is one of only a few sites in Costa Rica that contain 4 species of primate (mantled howler monkey, black-handed spider monkey, white-faced capuchin and the Central American squirrel monkey). Four species of sea turtle also nest along its beaches. Students gain hands-on experience through participation in Osa Conservation’s sustainable agriculture, wildlife monitoring and reforestation programs. Problems of various land-use activities will be evaluated with side trips to an oil palm plantation, a coffee plantation, and small-scale agricultural plots.
 
During the course participants will visit a wildlife rehabilitation center, sustainable chocolate plantation, and take a boat tour of the Golfo Dulce for dolphin viewing and snorkeling. We overnight on the Boruca Indigenous Reserve where we will learn about the community and their traditional lifeways, and help with needed projects. All within country travel is in cooperation with Planet Conservation, our sustainable travel partner. Every effort is made to implement eco-friendly and socially responsible practices into our day-to-day operations, field courses and overall mission.

Enrollment is limited to 15 students. The course is open to both credit and non-credit seeking students. University credit can be arranged through your home institution.