FIELD: Students Visit New Field Station

Matthew Krauss, News Writer •


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Last Wednesday, a group of Emory & Henry students visited the Bartlett-Crowe Field Station. Donated to the school in 2011, the station is now the home of Associate Professor of Chemistry and Environmental Studies Laura Hainsworth and Director of Quantitative Literacy and Instructor of Mathematics Mark Hainsworth. The Hainsworths also direct and manage the Field Station.

The trip was organized by the Ampersand Center and was designed to demonstrate to students how Emory & Henry is dedicated to helping students “learn how to learn.”

The property is 72 acres of woodlands, marshes, meadows and  riverbanks. The surrounding area is rich with wildlife, which presents researchers with multiple outlets for study.

Mark Hainsworth hosts middle schoolers to participate in team-building exercises that require them to engage in problem-solving activities connected to their academic disciplines. He uses the results from the activities as data for his students to explore the success and barriers to alternative means of education.

Sophomore Marie Mitchell is working on placing two new beehives at the field station in order to teach students the “importance of honeybees to our environment, economy and lifestyle.”

She first became interested in beekeeping after teaching a class on the subject this past summer as part of the Emory & Henry Summer Scholars program. Mitchell said those students’ “enthusiasm inspired us to form a club on campus.”

Students already use the site to study the composition of soil and age of trees, as well as learning how to test the quality of water. The hope is that students of photography, art, writing, natural sciences and astronomy would use the site for projects that allow them to expand their thinking beyond just what they learn in the classroom.  Laura Hainsworth would even like to create housing at the site so students could spend the night there and observe nature as it awakens in the morning.  She said she is excited about what the field station can be and is open to suggestions from students on how the facility can suit their learning style and majors.

The facility recently received a grant from the National Science Foundation which would allow the facility to prepare a 5-year plan. More information about the opportunities offered at the Bartlett-Crowe Field Station is available on the station’s Facebook page

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