Overall Rating Gold - expired
Overall Score 69.73
Liaison Lindsey Lyons
Submission Date April 30, 2012
Executive Letter Download

STARS v1.2

Dickinson College
ER-12: Sustainability Immersive Experience

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 2.00 / 2.00 Neil Leary
Director
Center for Sustainability Education
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution offer a program that meets the criteria for this credit?:
Yes

A brief description of the sustainability-focused immersive experience(s) offered by the institution:

Dickinson’s American and Global Mosaics are intensive, interdisciplinary, semester-long programs designed around field research and immersion in domestic and global communities. Most Mosaics have students take four interrelated courses, often co-taught by multiple faculty members, while other Mosaics consist of two or even just a single course. Whichever model is used, Mosaic programs immerse students in work with communities to apply learning from the classroom to solve real world problems, and bring these experiences back into the classroom.

http://www.dickinson.edu/academics/resources/advising/handbook/Mosaic-Semester/.

Generally, one or more Mosaic programs are offered each year. The topics vary, but problems of sustainability are often a major or closely related focus. Examples of past mosaics that have had a sustainability focus include the Integrated Watershed Semester, Sustainable Agricultural Systems in Venezuela and the United States, Geology and Sociology of Disasters, and From Kyoto to Copenhagen: Negotiating the Future of the Planet.

The Integrated Watershed Semester is a four-course Mosaic that engages students in field research with communities and in ecosystems of the Chesapeake Bay and the lower Mississippi River Basin to learn how communities use and manage water resources and derive their livelihoods from them. Students in the program take courses taught by Environmental Studies faculty that explore aquatic ecology, environmental justice, coastal geomorphology, sustainable resource management, and environmental policy. In the last weeks of the program, students apply the knowledge and skills gained from coursework and field research to community-based research projects that are focused on watersheds of south central Pennsylvania. See http://www.dickinson.edu/academics/programs/environmental-studies/content/Environmental-Studies-Luce-Semester-Information/ for details.

A one-course Mosaic called From Kyoto to Copenhagen: Negotiating the Future of the Planet was offered in 2009-2010. Students engaged in study of climate change science and policy and attended the 15th Conference of the Parties (COP15) of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change in Copenhagen to conduct field research on the international climate negotiations. This Mosaic is being expanded into a 4-course team-taught program on climate change in Africa for fall 2011. Fifteen students will take courses on climate science, ecological history of Africa, and the international climate negotiations; attend COP17 in Durban South Africa; and participate in a team research project. Sustainable development will be an explicit focus of the program. See http://dickinsonclimatemosaic.weebly.com/. A new Mosaic on natural history of Pennsylvania is being planned for fall 2012 that will include the history and sustainability of human interactions with the natural landscape and work with local and regional conservation organizations.

Dickinson’s Office of Global Education is developing new four-week summer study abroad programs that will immerse students in study of sustainability (http://www.dickinson.edu/academics/global-campus/sustainability/.) The first of these, Environmental Sustainability in the Middle East: Challenges in the Southern Arava, will be offered in summer 2011 in collaboration with the Arava Institute in Israel. Summer sustainability immersion programs are also being developed with the University of Bremen in Germany and the University of Yaoundé in Cameroon, institutions with which Dickinson offers semester and/or year-long study abroad programs. Each of the summer immersion programs will be co-directed and co-taught by Dickinson and host institution faculty.


The website URL where information about the immersive experience is available:

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