Exploring Urban Nature in Chicago (May 2018)

Just finished up five days of exploring the urban and suburban environment of the Chicago region with my intrepid squad of @RooseveltU students in our one-week-intensive Sustainability Studies 360 course, Writing Urban Nature. Here they are at the North Park Village Nature Center on Chicago’s NW Side, one of the many sites we visited this week in Chicago, Schaumburg, and Will County.

From Chicago’s lakefront to its North Side parklands and trails; from South Branch of the Chicago River to the wetlands and woodlands of the NW suburbs; from heritage farms to prairie restoration sites — we visited a wide diversity of places in which to analyze the ever-shifting relations between the natural and built environments in this place that has come to be called “Chicago Wilderness.”

Pictured from L to R here are Austyn (oboe major), Tom (psychology), Alicia (sustainability studies), Grace (wildlife biology), and Denise (biology). Notably, Grace joined our group as a student-at-large from Western State CO University, enrolling in this environmental humanities class via the Resilience Studies Consortium of US colleges and universities. The students now are working on creative non-fiction essays as part of our Writing Urban Nature online project, est. 2015.

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