Franklin & Marshall College Franklin & Marshall College

Wildlife Conservation for a Changing Planet

Presentation for Lancaster city students on the Green

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On April 20, 2010, students from Dr. Sarah Dawson's Wildlife Conservation for a Changing Planet class staged a series of presentations on Hartman Green aimed at educating local elementary and middle school children about wildlife conservation and other environmental issues. Approximately 400 students ranging from grades three through seven attended the event in order to learn about threatened species and local species diversity.

The F&M students created presentations focused on a variety of environmental issues. Some projects demonstrated ways in which children might take small steps in their own lives to make a positive environmental difference, while others aimed to educate the children about basic ecological concepts like food webs or deforestation.

ZooAmerica, located in Hershey, donated both live animals and personnel to the event. They brought a variety of species, including a red-tailed hawk, an alligator, and a skunk. The North Museum provided an interactive display that allowed the children to handle skulls and pelts of animals that they might see in Lancaster and the surrounding area.

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Professor Sarah Dawson, Director of the Wohlsen Center for the Sustainable Environment, presented the project idea to her class at the start of the semester. The students became enthusiastic about the idea after class discussions that emphasized the role of education in environmental protection.

 The day of the event was very successful. Both the  students at Franklin & Marshall and the students  from the local city schools were very excited to  participate. Dawson's students hope that their project sparked an interest in wildlife conservation for the schoolchildren and inspired them to live more sustainable lives.

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  • Eddie Stene '11 and Maya Wilson '11 explain the intricacies of food webs.

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  • Kyanna Lewis '12 and Olivier Dezerald show students a burrowing owl.

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  • Jennifer Everhart '11 and Veronica Thomas '11 organized the event.

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  • Liz Burmester '10 cleans up the dirty reputation of alligators.