Local News

June 25, 2014

Paul Smith's College offering Field Ecology Program

PAUL SMITHS — Hands-on experiences are waiting for high-school students in the new Adirondack Field Ecology Program at Paul Smith's College.

Students can go birding, explore the St. Regis Wilderness Area, track wildlife and discover the mysteries of Adirondack forests.

The program, aimed at students interested in biodiversity conservation and wilderness ecology, will run Aug. 2 to 16.

It will be taught by Paul Smith's College faculty members and is open to students who have completed their junior or senior year of high school.

"This field school not only teaches students real-world knowledge, skills and techniques, but also lets them interact with Paul Smith's faculty who are experts in their fields," Melanie Johnson, assistant professor at Paul Smith's and program organizer, said in a news release.

"It's also a terrific introduction to college life before you start your college career."

The $1,995 cost includes room and board. Students who complete the class will earn four college credits. They do not need to enroll at Paul Smith's for college.

The class will start with an exploration of basic concepts of ecology and then delve into specialized, one-to-two-day modules that take advantage of Paul Smith's location amidst the mountains, lakes and forests of the 6 million-acre Adirondack Park.

Topics include: ecology of fish, mammals, birds, invertebrates and plants; sampling techniques such as electrofishing, live-trapping and radio-tracking; terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems; understanding historical ecological patterns using paleoecology; sampling water quality; applied genetics; and how ecology researchers use geographic information systems.

The Adirondacks are the classroom for the course, but students will also take advantage of it in their down time for swimming, hiking, fishing or relaxing on the college's campus, adjacent to Lower St. Regis Lake.

For more information, visit or contact the Admissions Office at or (800) 421-2605.

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