A collaboration among the Center, Hiram College, and Kent State University, LSI uses a learning community model (one high school teacher and up to seven students from the same school) to investigate important local, regional, and international water-related issues. The residential program kicks off July 26, 2018 and concludes August 9, 2018.
The first week of the program takes place on the urban campus of Case Western Reserve University in the heart of the University Circle neighborhood in Cleveland. The Cleveland Museum of Art, Severance Hall, the Cleveland Museum of Natural History, Cleveland Botanical Garden and other world-renowned institutions are within easy walking distance. In addition to the opportunity to visit some of these institutions, students will use standardized EPA protocols to evaluate urban streams and rivers near the CWRU campus to make comparisons to data collected in Hiram, OH later in the program.
Participants spend the second week on the campus of Hiram College using the same EPA protocols to characterize local rivers, streams, and wetlands and to explore connections between land and water ecosystems. Students also have many opportunities to explore Hiram and the Hiram College campus, a highly regarded liberal arts university in a rural setting.
The final week of the program is spent at the Kelleys Island Field Station in the western basin of Lake Erie, with each learning community designing and conducting their own investigation in a large, heavily impacted ecosystem. All the resources of the island and neighboring waters of Lake Erie are at their disposal including reclaimed quarries, island streams and wetlands, glacial grooves, rare alvar habitats, and of course, the lake itself.
LSI is truly international, as learning communities are drawn from schools in northeast Ohio and regions throughout Pakistan and the Dominican Republic. LSI has included international students and their teachers since 2014 and past participants have found the cultural exchanges and varied perspectives to be highlights of the program.
Each learning community will develop a legacy project based on their experiences in the LSI program. The project will address a water-related issue important to them and may include other students at each school in addition to those participating in the learning community. The results of these legacy projects will be presented at a virtual international summit during the spring semester.
A grant to Hiram College from the US Department of State and donations by the Paul and Maxine Frohring Foundation, Gelfand STEM Center, and others cover all costs associated with the program (housing, meals, transportation, field trips, etc). We acknowledge that participation in LSI requires a major commitment, but students will tell you the program has made a difference in their lives.