In years past, Bridal Veil Living Classroom has been open exclusively to area high school students for dual college and high school credit. After continuous requests for the program by adult community members, Telluride Institute is working toward acquiring accreditation through University Centers of the San Miguel for adult participation in this summer’s course.
The program is a summer field research intensive course, located in the fragile and relatively pristine Bridal Veil Basin, above and beyond the historical Bridal Veil Power Station to the southeast of Telluride. Bridal Veil Living Classroom provides an in-depth, hands-on scientific learning experience, in which data collection and species identification skills are acquired, along with a broad understanding of important ecological concepts resulting in an enhanced sense of environmental stewardship.
The program consists of two weeklong summer sessions, plus continuing academic coursework carrying into the fall. While high school students are required to complete all sessions plus fall academics for dual credit, adults will be able to choose which sessions to attend in accordance with the level of accreditation they desire.
Session 1 takes place the first week of July and will introduce several topics such as ornithology (the study of birds), forest ecology, vegetation identification, aquatic insects, and impacts of climate change to the alpine ecosystem, while gathering standard biodiversity data that the program is focused on for long-term monitoring purposes.
Session 2 takes place in early August and will use the skills acquired during the first session to conduct individualized field research projects. Mentor oversight with qualified Telluride Institute Watershed Education Program instructors and field experts provides participants with the guidance necessary for a truly inspirational and educational experience.
Students from years past have found Bridal Veil Living Classroom to be an initial stepping stone for a future of environmentally-inspired life paths, going on to pursue international environmental internships and college careers centered upon environmental studies. This summer, area high school students will study alongside college interns, adult participants and regional visiting specialists for a richly layered, multi-age approach to a valuable program previously only available to the high school sector.
More information about Bridal Veil Living Classroom can be viewed by visiting www.tellurideinstitute.org and clicking on the Programs link, by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or calling 970/728-8312. The program is limited to a maximum of five participants due to the low student-mentor ratio. Registration deadline is May 27.