Category Archives: Credit Courses & Summer Semester

ESF Online: Take ESF with You Wherever You Go!

ESF Online enables you to Take ESF with You Wherever You Go. Thanks to a 2008 grant fromSS the Betsy and Jesse Fink Foundation that supported the ESF in the High School Distance Learning Initiative, along with a NASA Global Climate Change Online grant and, more recently, funding from the US Department of Labor, ESF has developed a strong presence in the world of online education. Coupled with a robust selection of short-term field experience courses, our online offerings have been concentrated in our Summer Semester. Explore ESF’s online and other Summer courses!

Learn more and to register.

So who is “Chris”?

Who’s Chris? Last month’s post generated some enjoyable emails and inquiries about “Chris” who has graciously served as the personification of ESF’s Summer Semester. Chris Rothery, an ESF Outreach undergraduate student assistant hails from Long Beach, California. He is an Environmental Studies major with an environmental policy, planning and law concentration.

Along with his academic pursuits, Chris is active with Quidditch. In fact, he will be academic year 2015-16 president of the Syracuse University/ESF Quidditch club team! Chris is also active with Model United Nations. This summer, Chris, an Eagle ScChris Earth Dayout, will be an advisor to Boy Scouts of America crew no. 134, a venturing program for young adults. In addition, he will resume his role as a Civil War reenactor.

As you can see, we are privileged to have Chris with us. We look forward to having Chris back next academic year and to his creative and technical contributions.

Please note: Syracuse University and other visiting students interested in taking an ESF Summer Semester course, MySlice (the online registration portal used during the academic year) is not available during summer semester. Instead, to register for a 2015 ESF Summer course please contact Maura Stefl at / 315.470.6811 or Barbara Newman at / 315.470.6817. Thank you.

Chuck Spuches, Associate Provost for Outreach

Are you ready to Summer? Join us for ESF’s Summer Semester!

Apparently our attempt to bring some joy to an otherwise long cold winter has garnered some enthusiastic support. I appreciate our graduate assistant, Kansas native and environmental science masters student, Rachel Hoppins, and Long Beach, California native and environmental studies undergraduate, Chris Rothery, for their creative spirit – thank you.

If you haven’t fo22301_363300567211348_852335096924437441_nllowed Chris through the seasons and holidays of the academic year, please visit him on Facebook. But please don’t let the joyful tone distract you from the serious opportunities ESF’s Summer Semester offers ESF students – as well as students from other campuses to explore on-campus and field-experience courses, including courses in Acadia National Park (Maine), Washington DC, Heiberg Forest, New York City, Martha’s Vineyard, the Hudson River Watershed and elsewhere. Or the opportunity to Take ESF with You Wherever You Go through on online course. All at affordable and competitive SUNY tuition rates. Help us spread the word – thank you.

Chuck Spuches, Associate Provost for Outreach

Summer Semester? With four feet of snow left to shovel?!

Yes!  It’s that time to look ahead and prepare to make the most of our summer months, especially for our ESF students and students from other campuses.

Preparations are well underway for ESF’s Summer Semester. Registration opened this week!

The Summer 2015 schedule of classes  includes  online,  on-campus, and a variety of field-experiences held in locations near and far.  All of which are, of course, offered at very affordable SUNY tuition rates.

Please join our outstanding group of instructors for a productive and enjoyable summer course experience.  And please help us to invite and encourage others to explore ESF Summer courses that will help them to catch up, get ahead and make the most of their summer.

We welcome your thoughts and questions and we look forward to working with you.

All our best,
Dr. Chuck Spuches, Associate Provost
ESF Outreach

In case you’re curious about  the reference to “four more feet of snow”.  Syracuse is one of the snowiest cities in the U.S. (with populations of 50,000 and more), with annual average snowfall of nine to ten feet.  So far we’ve received almost six feet – so four more to go!  And who knows how much of that will be ‘lake effect snow’!  Why do you think Dave Eichorn’s Meteorology (FOR 338/538) course is so popular?

Where will ESF Summer Semester take you?

Craving some adventure in 2015? ESF Summer Semester might be able to help!

This year’s field experiences could take you to

  • Lucky Star Ranch in Chaumont, NY. Take Wildlife Field Techniques (EFB 496) and learn about wildlife monitoring and management techniques while staying on the ranch.  Best part: There are no additional fees for transportation, board, or meals!
  • Washington D.C. Take Natural History Museums and Modern Science (EFB 404) to explore the role of natural history museums as places of research and public education for one week in Washington D.C.
  • Heiberg Forest. Take Forest Health Monitoring (EFB 439) to get hands-on experience managing healthy forests in ESF’s own Heiberg Forest.
  • New York City. Take 7 days in NYC: Exploring Contemporary Urban Landscapes (LSA 496/696) to dive into landscape architectures issues in one of America’s most exciting cities.
  • Hudson River. Take The Hudson River Watershed: Source to Sink in Eight Days (EFB 500) to see the history and ecology of this fascinating watershed come to life.
  • New York City. Take Urban Agriculture and Food Cultures (LSA 496/696) for a taste of food from around the world from right here in Syracuse.  The field trip to New York City will give you a taste of the Big Apple’s urban agriculture scene.
  • Acadia National Park. Take National Park Service Field School at Acadia National Park (LSA 496/696) to study park management and cultural landscape preservation while working in the historic Acadia National Park.  Best part: Transportation, housing, and a stipend are included.
  • Finger Lakes National Forest near Watkins Glen, NY. Take Wetland Restoration Practicum (EFB 496/696) to get your hands dirty restoring a real wetland site alongside experts in the Finger Lakes National Forest.
  • Anywhere! ESF Summer Semester is offering 19 online courses.  Take ESF wherever you go (as long as you have an internet connection)!

Make plans now to get ahead or catch up with one or more of our 30+ ESF Summer Semester on-campus, online, and field-based courses. View the complete course schedule online. Registration opens February 2nd.

New Year – New Opportunites

Dear Friends, Collaborators, and Participants –

The New Year is a time for reflection and planning, and an opportunity to personally thank each of you who honor us with your ongoing active partnership and support.

This past year, ESF’s outreach included educational programs and technical services that engaged the College with a broad array of constituents. ESF faculty, staff and students, along with our partners, continued to pursue a diverse range of programs and projects that include on- and off-campus, online, credit and non-credit, and formal and informal learning opportunities for professionals, elementary through high school students, ESF students, and lifelong learners. ESF’s outreach supports environmental, educational, social and economic development in ways that advance both the public good and the College’s mission.

ESF in the High School, a concurrent enrollment program, for example, entails formal partnerships between ESF and high schools in Rochester, New York City and throughout Central /Upstate New York. Last year this program enabled well over 600 students to experience college-level work and to explore STEM and related academic and career opportunities. ESF in the High School also provides high-caliber STEM professional development opportunities for participating teachers.

ESF’s several professional education conferences and workshops continue to engage participants from communities of practice and scholarship in geographical communities near and far. One ongoing four-day workshop hosted by the Sustainable Construction Management and Engineering academic program recently engaged participants from Canada and eleven states, including Texas!

Three professional educational programs last year benefited the Central New York Community by generating a combined economic impact of nearly $300,000.

One initiative, the Radiation Curing Program (RCP) represents a truly 21st Century business/academic/public sector collaboration and a fully distributed online instructional approach that serves professionals and students throughout the U.S. and around the world.

As we look ahead to this New Year, please explore with us an ever more exciting calendar of programs to be held here in Central New York, at the Brookhaven National Laboratory, and in our virtual world. And please join us in recognizing and celebrating all of our partnerships, including those with the NYS DEC, with Rick Fedrizzi and the U.S. Green Building Council, the SUNY Research Foundation, and the Syracuse Center of Excellence (to mention just a few).

I believe that, together with our ESF faculty, staff, students and alumni, we all have an opportunity to truly fulfill ESF’s outreach and service mission and, in turn, to make positive educational, professional, and economic differences in our communities and in our world.
Please contact us with your thoughts and questions – we look forward to working with you.

I wish you a productive and enjoyable New Year.

Dr. Chuck Spuches, Associate Provost for Outreach

ESF Summer Semester Destinations

ESF Summer Semester Destinations

Make plans now to get ahead or catch up with one or more of our 30+ ESF Summer Semester on-campus, online, and field-based courses offered at affordable SUNY-ESF tuition rates. View the complete course schedule online. Registration opens February 2nd.

Summer Semester Spotlight: Wetland Restoration Practicum

Wetland Restoration Practicum
EFB 496 (11)/696 (04)
July 29-30, 2015
Instructor:  Tom Biebighauser

Look back at 2014:

In 2014,  ten Wetland Restoration Practicum students joined the Upper Susquehanna Coalition and their instructor, Tom Biebighauser, to restore five wetlands in the Finger Lakes National Forest near Lodi, NY.  Students gained hands-on experience by guiding heavy equipment operations, removing drainage structures, positioning woody debris for habitats, and seeding/planting native wetland species.  Click through this album to see for yourself what Wetland Restoration Practicum is like:

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Like what you see?  Go to for more information!

10 Reasons to Take ESF Summer Semester Courses

  1. Enjoy some summer sunshine.  Summer is the best time to be in the field.  Taking Field Ornithology would get you outside to hear the birds sing.
  2. Take a unique course.  Take Wetland Restoration Techniques  and Wetland Restoration Practicum with Tom Beibighauser, a top experienced professional in the wetland restoration field.
  3. Devote more time and energy to a difficult course.  Take Physics of Life or Principles of Genetics as a summer course to focus all of your studying power on these difficult courses.
  4. Get a gen ed or prerequisite course out of the way.  American History: From Discovery to Civil War and American History: Reconstruction to Present meet the SUNY General Education requirement for American History.
  5. Have your cake and eat it too!  Short Maymester courses don’t take your whole break!  Try Water Resources to earn four credit-hours in just two short weeks!
  6. Online classes can make a summer at home more bearable.  Instead of watching Netflix, take Film & Environment: Nature, Culture, & Image in Movies to get credit for watching movies.
  7. Finish school early or on-time.  Many of the ESF Summer Semester courses are required to graduate.  Take College Algebra & Trigonometry or College Algebra & Pre-Calculus to jump start your college career.
  8. Explore a topic you are passionate about. Lots of ESF Summer Semester courses help inspire you to improve your world.  Urban Agriculture & Food Cultures covers important topics like food security, environmental quality, and sustainable communities.
  9. Take a class with friends.  Your schedules aren’t as full during the summer term.  How about Flora of Central New York, where you’ll study plants and flowers in the lab and out in the field?
  10. You like a good adventure.  Join the National Park Service Field School at Acadia National Park to explore one of America’s most beloved landscape while gaining real skills in cultural landscape preservation.

Learn more about ESF Summer Semester and all of these great classes at: Registration begins February 2, 2015.

Think Summer Semester!

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Dear ESF Undergraduate and Graduate Students,

ESF’s Summer Semester is well established in the hearts and minds of the ESF community. I want to extend a warm welcome to our first year undergraduate and graduate students who may be less aware that, at this time of year, planning and preparation for ESF’s Summer Semester are well underway. Please keep ESF’s Summer Session in mind as you schedule appointments and meet with your advisor in November for Spring Registration.

A working Summer 2015 schedule is now available online at Please review the course schedule to get a sense of what to look forward to next summer.  Check back throughout the semester to keep up with new developments.

I welcome and will appreciate any thoughts and questions you may have. Thank you.

Chuck Spuches

Nov 6 Schedule