Feature: New student ‘community’ learns together on green field trip

We have an interesting report on the inaugural Sustainability Learning Community at UW-Green Bay. The community is made up of 15 sophomores who, when registering for fall 2013 courses near the end of their freshman years last spring, committed to take three common core courses and participate in sustainability-education activities this semester. Earlier this month, they took a field trip that brought them to a wind turbine farm and to the sandy banks of the Wisconsin River near Aldo Leopold’s shack. UW-Green Bay is piloting such learning communities as a “high-impact” best practice that enhances the student experience, provides targeted learning early in the college career, and has the potential to improve retention and graduation rates. The Sustainability Learning Community is highly interdisciplinary, too. The three courses are Energy and Society taught by Prof. John Katers, Introduction to Philosophy taught by Associate Prof. Chris Martin, and, Business and Its Environment taught by Senior Lecturer Don McCartney. Participants come together in a common discussion section on Fridays with all three instructors taking part as they look deeper at the materials being covered in each course through the lens of sustainability. We have a nice set of photos and fact online.