This summer, students at BELL: Rhode Island will live and study at the pristine Whispering Pines Conference Center at the W. Alton Jones Environmental Education Center in West Greenwich, Rhode Island.

BELL combines concepts in environmental studies, ecology, and leadership, with a mission of developing socially responsible leaders. At BELL, students develop the knowledge, skills, and attitudes necessary to create positive change on environmental issues facing their local communities and the planet as a whole.

Students will work to better understand the causes and impacts of climate change and identify examples environmental resilience. Additionally, students will be encouraged and empowered to develop solutions to environmental issues occurring in their own communities.

Areas of Focus:

  • Resources and skills for developing perspective on environmental advocacy
  • Ideas for engaging in environmental action
  • Information on careers in environmental science or policy
  • Campus visit to Brown University including student panels and academic presentations
  • Impact of humans on ecosystems in the context of global climate change
  • Outdoor labs, including:
    • Herpetology, including amphibian and reptile identification
    • Water and air quality assessment
    • Wetland, forest, and stream ecology
  • Environmental dispute resolution and policy
  • Environmental justice literacy and context

Students will be active for at least a part of each day. Some days will include activities such as hiking, wading in wetlands or streams, or standing outside for lessons.

Cost and Session Information

Program Dates:

  • June 28 - July 9, 2020
  • July 12 - 23, 2020

Students can expect a moderate level of physical activity every day, and should be ready to participate in outdoor activities outdoors in all temperatures and weather conditions.

Students will be staying in hotel-style housing at the Whispering Pines Conference Center. Students will be housed with 1 – 2 of their peers, separated by gender identity, and will sleep in separate beds. All indoor facilities at Whispering Pines are air conditioned. Staff lives on site and is available to the students 24 hours a day for support and supervision.

Students turn in their electronic devices on the first day of BELL. We ask students (and families) to limit cell phone use to times when students have their phones, which will be specified in advance.

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