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Course: Atlantic Salmon Conservation Projects

University of Maine at Machias

Promising Approaches

  • (2) Incorporate discussion of current local, national and international issues.
  • (3) Design/implement programs linking community service to curriculum.
  • (8) Involve students in developing and sustaining of campus/community partnerships


Students work with local watershed councils, state and federal agencies in the recovery of the endangered Atlantic salmon. As part of these projects, students will learn about the life history of the Atlantic salmon, its environment, the threats to its survival, and the processes underway to facilitate its recovery. Students learn how to measure water quality parameters, assess habitat, and the use of biological indicators of water and habitat quality. A central focus is a five year study on Venture Brook in cooperation with the Dennys River Watershed Council. Students are encouraged to think critically about the biological and sociological issues surrounding salmon and salmon restoration.  From the syllabus:  “I hope that you will see how much a dedicated group of volunteers can accomplish.  In the long run I hope that community involvement and knowledgeable participation will become a part of your life.”

Special Features

Civic Learning Goals

  • Civic Knowledge:  Gain knowledge of the environmental regulatory process; learn how various governmental process interrelate
  • Civic Skills:  Design projects to fit ecological/social needs; forge coalitions across governmental and civic organizations
  • Civic Attitudes/Dispositions:  Develop an appreciation for the effects of human activity on natural processes and the scope of governmental and community response

Contact Information

Sherrie Sprangers

Campaign for the Civic Mission of Schools: Education for Democracy