Don't be surprised if you see a few more mountain men than usual in the Adirondack Park this fall. Starting in September, the SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry is offering a semester of study in the mountains.
SUNY ESF (adjacent to Syracuse University) and the University of Vermont have co-created a program for upper-level undergraduates and graduate students studying forestry to have some hands-on experience in the scenic and diverse wilderness of the Adirondacks.
For the entirety of the fall semester, students will live in cabins at ESF's Newcomb campus, located in the expansive Huntington Wildlife Forest area.
While in the park, students will be taught a range of skills and lessons, including the natural sciences, conservation practices, environmental ethics, and leadership.
Activities will include studying biodiversity in the forest, visiting active logging sites to learn about the modern industry of logging, and visiting the Adirondack Museum for cultural insights.
The ultimate goal of the program is to teach students to have a well-rounded view of competing interests within forests, and how to balance and resolve these conflicts.
As one senior said, "Forestry is the type of thing you can't learn in a book."
The program is unique -many consider it similar to study abroad opportunity, within a remarkable national park that feels like it's in our backyard.
Besides - who doesn't want to go camping in college? Oh, and learn of course, too.