Kate Wolf'13 (ecology, evolution, and behavioral biology)
“Wetlands Ecology and Environmental Education”
Location: Amur Region, Russian Federation
Kate (pictured, on the right) taught about Ecology through lessons on sustainable farming practices, personal impact on local ecosystems in addition to American Culture at an English Language and Ecology camp in South East Siberia. Kate was faced with the difficulty of not having translators for all the classes, forcing her to rethink the lessons. At times the park officials would randomly force the curriculum to be changed. Despite these holdups in teaching, Kate managed to realize that her teaching had an impact on her students; she had this to say: “During my trip, I wanted to teach more than only conservation; rather, I had hoped to teach that everyone—Russians, Americans, students, and adults—had the ability to impact the quality of the world around them. These students, I believe, learned this, but they also learned something I [had] not [planned] on: they were empowered because they had learned that their actions and voices were international.” Her experience was clearly not just about conservation, but about raising awareness that all peoples are both responsible for the environment and capable of protecting it. Kate gave a presentation about her teaching and work in Russia at the International Symposium in the autumn of 2010.
Below: Kate leading and environmental education tour.