Long Term Ecological Research
It is always great to visit places where people are actively engaged in learning and generating data with no hidden agendas of any kind. It is all on the table. The purpose of research is to learn the truth, as clearly as possible, using sound, objective scientific methods.
Harvard Forest, is a 3,500 acre site in Petersham. Massachusetts with laboratories and classrooms, where since 1907 scientists and students “… have explored the ways biological, physical, and human systems interact to change our earth.” (harvardforest.fas.harvard.edu/)
During the summer it offers internships for undergraduates who work side by side with mentors conducting independent research focusing on the effects of natural and human disturbances on forest ecosystems. I had the opportunity for a brief tour of the labs and a chance to meet some of the students. Given the chance, I would spend the whole summer with these science students, following and photo documenting their research and activities.