Courtesy of UCLA Newsroom
Courtesy of UCLA Newsroom

The UC Office of the President (UCOP) has announced a new systemwide natural reserve “supercourse” on California ecology and conservation. This course will take place in fall 2015 and will be open to 27 students across the UC system with applications due Feb. 2.

The course will take students across natural reserves in California from the Angelo Coast Range reserve at UC Berkeley to the Box Springs Mountain reserve at UCR. The course involves seven weeks of fieldwork with an additional two weeks dedicated to an extra project.

Skills that will be taught are field research methods, experimental design, data analysis, scientific writing and public speaking. The goal is to help students develop their own independent research.

“It was the most valuable class I took at UCSC (UC Santa Cruz),” former UCSC student Hilary Walecka, a participant of the spring 2010 supercourse stated in a press release. “You really can’t get a better education than being hands-on and side-by-side with your professors to do research.”

Students from all fields can be accepted as long as they display a strong passion for ecology in their application and finish an introductory biology or ecology course. The program will choose three qualified students from each of the nine undergraduate UCs.

The course is estimated to cost students around $3,500 and will cover food, lodging, administrative fees and course materials. Those who receive financial aid will have these expenses included as part of their package.

The course will be hosted by UCSC academic staff. Applications will be reviewed by course instructors Don Croll, a professor at UCSC and Gage Dayton, a UCSC Administrative Director, along with many from the natural reserve staff throughout the UC.