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Students and faculty Katherine Adelsberger in the Environmental Studies course Soil Science take samples and GPS data from burned and unburned prairie and forest sites at Green Oaks.

Experiences & Opportunities

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Katherine Adelsberger

The Douglas and Maria Bayer Endowed Chair in Earth Science

2 East South Street

Galesburg, IL 61401-4999



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Canoes sit on the shore of a lake at the Green Oaks Biological Field Station.

There are ample opportunities to enhance your studies in environmental studies through independent research, off-campus study, and internships. These programs are integral to a Knox education, teaching you how to apply your skills in real world situations.

Student Research and Creative Projects

Many of our majors -- and minors -- pursue College Honors or other research and creative projects. Some even present or perform their work at national and international conferences. Here are a few recent projects:

  • "Alluvial sedimentology of an archaeological transition at Sai Island, Sudan," Danika L. Hill '14, environmental studies and chemistry major.
  • "Alternative Land Use: A Solution to the Socioeconomic Cause of Deforestation in Guatemala," Dan Pers '10, environmental studios and biology major.
  • "Superfund: Process and Public Relations," Megan Butler '08, environmental studies major.
  • "Movements to the Wilderness," Sarah Kilch '06, environmental studies and creative writing major.
  • "Feeding the Future: How Childhood Experiences Shape Adult Cooking Habits and Why We Need to Reclaim Our Kitchens," Jessica Lee Johnson '12.
  • "An Environmental Evaluation of Air Pollution from the Railroad in Galesburg, IL," Sarah Komicki '10.
  • "An Ethical Evaluation of Herbicide Use in Restoration Ecology," Chelsea Marie Bagot '07.

Off-Campus Programs

Our students take advantage of the more than two dozen off-campus study programs. Two are of special interest to students concentrating in Environmental Studies.

  • Costa Rica -- The Tropical Field Research Program offers opportunities for research in 10 different ecological zones, from tropical rain forests to temperate highlands. The Latin American Culture and Society Program focuses on issues relating to development and cultural change.
  • Oak Ridge Science Semester -- Specialties at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory include basic research in the natural sciences, and a variety of areas in the social sciences including urban development, environmental impact and energy resource availability. The program includes an interdisciplinary seminar and an advanced course in a relevant discipline.
  • Brazil Exchange Program -- The ACM exchange program in Brazil includes an Environmental Studies focus, where students are encouraged to examine this highly biodiverse region while taking intensive Portuguese.  Students engaging in the Environmental Studies Program in Brazil will be named ACM-Brazil FIPSE Environmental Fellows.
  • Tanzania -- This program in ecology and human origins offers a truly interdisciplinary view of the relationship between people and their environment.  A field research project provides opportunities for students to purse their own interests in biology or anthropology.


There's no better way to explore the possibilities of life after Knox than internships. Recent internships by environmental studies students include:

  • Salmon Conservation and Restoration Intern, Sitka Conservation Society, Alaska.  Michael Belitz, '14, environmental studies and biology major.
  • Intern, Brookfield Zoo, Brookfield, Illinois. Corey Palmer '07, environmental studies major.
  • Kayaking Intern, Acadia National Park, Bar Harbor, Maine. Sarah Kilch '06, environmental studies major.
  • Naturalist Intern, Wildlife Prairie State Park, Hanna City, Illinois. Ryan Arch '06, environmental studies and biology major.
  • Wetland Intern, V3 Companies, Woodridge, Illinois. Abigail Letzter '05, environmental studies major.
  • Wetland Intern, V3 Companies, Woodridge, Illinois. Colleen Bohlin '05, environmental studies and American studies major.

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Printed on Sunday, August 7, 2022