Michael Benedict, (2006) Associate Professor of Environmental Studies; Conservation Director & Interim Director of the James H. Barrow Biological Field Station and Northwoods Field Station
B.S., Universidade Santa Ursula, Brazil;
M.S., Ph.D., University of Toledo
James Tolan, Manager of Operations, James H. Barrow Biological Field Station and Northwoods Field Station
The Northwoods Field Station, located in the Hiawatha National Forest in the upper Peninsula of Michigan, serves as a headquarters for trips in the spring, summer, and fall. The station is nineteen miles from Lake Superior at the western boundary of the Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore and provides a wilderness setting for special courses and programs, field research in the summer, and general visits by students and alumni.
Hiawatha Campus is for those who enjoy interacting with the great outdoors. Emphasis is on living in harmony with nature. The camp has a beautiful lodge and six sleeping cabins, built by Hiram students and faculty in the late 1970's. Facilities can house up to 24 people. Although "rustic" (there is limited solar electricity, no cell phone access, and composting outhouses are the preferred method of sanitation), the main lodge is outfitted with a modern kitchen and indoor plumbing, including a flush toilet and shower (powered by hand-pumping from the well).
The camp is on the shore of Cherry Lake and is surrounded by federal forest lands, meadows, bogs, rivers, and more than a dozen other undeveloped lakes, all within a two-mile hike of the station.
Course offerings have included field biology, field botany, geology, environmental studies, natural history, astronomy, and photography. Other recent offerings include: storytelling, writing, literature, leadership, and environmental education. The spring three-week term has been especially successful with team-taught interdisciplinary courses about subjects as diverse as water and Shakespeare.