Restoration Ecology Undergraduate Program

Photo of students snowshoeing on the Mount Holyoke College campus

Educating undergraduates in the science, practice, and human dimensions of restoration

The vision for the Mount Holyoke Restoration Ecology Program is to establish a unique academic program that will provide a foundational education for Mount Holyoke students in the diverse and interconnected disciplines composing ecological restoration. This program enriches the curriculum of students from a diversity of majors and provides formal training for students who wish to pursue a career in restoration ecology and related fields. Students participating in the program contribute to the science and practice of ecosystem restoration in two fundamental ways:

  1. by helping to design real-world restoration projects with real-world consequences; and
  2. by contributing to our understanding of ecosystem development and restoration practice by carrying out significant original research projects of their own design in topics that span the disciplines.

ES 316 is the core course that introduces students to the science, practice, and social dimensions of restoration. Students in Mount Holyoke’s Restoration Ecology course study ecological principles, visit completed restoration projects, meet with professionals in the field, and contribute to real campus restoration projects. Students in previous iterations of the course identified and researched the site for the Project Stream wetland restoration project and have developed monitoring protocols for a suite of properties at the site.

As a direct result of their work, restoration action began in Summer 2015 to construct over 5000 square feet of new wetland, remove invasive species in the existing Project Stream wetland, and install an outdoor classroom for use by future students and community members.

Restoration Ecology Classes

Photo of the Restoration Ecology class in Spring, 2015

Spring 2015

Restoration Ecology 2015 took on Phase 3 of Project Stream: Outreach.
Photo of the Restoration Ecology class in Spring, 2014

Spring 2014

Restoration Ecology 2014 took on Phase 2 of Project Stream: Monitoring Proposals.
Photo of the Restoration Ecology class in Spring, 2013

Spring 2013

Restoration Ecology 2013 was the first group of students to adopt Project Stream.