Ten Grand Valley students had what a faculty member called "a study abroad experience in the middle of Lake Michigan" to cap off an environmental and sustainability studies course.
Kelly Parker, professor of philosophy and environmental and sustainability studies, led students to Beaver Island for a week of field work in late June. Parker began planning this trip three years ago with a colleague, Seamus Norgaard, from North Central Michigan College in Petoskey, who owns property on Beaver Island.
"Beaver Island is a magical place, one of the most ecologically diverse places in Michigan," Parker said. "When you are crossing over on the ferry from Charlevoix to this distinct, somewhat isolated place, it's like going to a study abroad experience."
Home base for the group was the Central Michigan University Biological Research Station campground. Students completed group and individual projects that focused on the island's rich ecological and cultural history and engaged with island experts.