E.A.R.T.H. (Environmental Analysis & Research Technical Help) is a joint endeavor of Florida Gulf Coast University and the Conservancy of Southwest Florida, a 501 (c) 3 non-profit organization incorporated in the State of Florida. The mission of E.A.R.T.H. is to support life-long formal, non-formal, and informal Environmental Education (EE) in Charlotte, Collier, Glades, Hendry, and Lee Counties in southwest Florida by providing technical help for environmental analysis and research to local schools and colleges, environmental organizations, and agencies. E.A.R.T.H. Service Learning provides flexible opportunities for students interested in working outdoors, interacting with children, teens, and adults, providing technical support, and developing leadership skills.
Our ENVIRONMENTAL EDUCATION DATABASE PROGRAM works on developing comprehensive and integrated spatially referenced information about educational institutions (schools, colleges, and universities), parks and protected areas (federal, state, county, city, and private), environmental organizations and agencies, and environmental businesses in southwest Florida. A more developed EE Database will include searchable entries on locations and extents, natural areas and green buildings, programs and events, educational materials, and opportunities for outdoor activities.
Our ENVIRONMENTAL COMPUTER MAPPING PROGRAM works on collecting, collating, monitoring, analyzing, and mapping a wide variety of digital information about ecological sustainability in southwest Florida. The first data sets are being used to develop customized computer activities that will help promote knowledge, skills, and responsibility about environmental problems in the region. As more data sets become available they will be used to develop integrated natural, social, and economic models to assess sustainable alternatives for southwest Florida. Previous GIS experience is not required and training will be provided.
Our ENVIRONMENTAL OUTREACH PROGRAM works on placing properly qualified and experienced Service Learning students with regional schools and colleges, environmental organizations, and agencies to promote and facilitate mapping and modeling as tools for environmental education.
ACCOUNTING/FINANCIAL: Use your FGCU economics courses to research, download, and analyze ecological economics and environmental indicator data for southwest Florida; Use your financial skills to enter financial data, review account spreadsheets, and to manage accounts payable and receivable. Use your accounting expertise to develop budgets and cash flow projections for E.A.R.T.H. programs, projects, and grants.
ADULT (EDUCATION): Use your organizational skills to prepare and deliver environmental events and activities, including field trips; Use your observational and computer skills to develop and update the E.A.R.T.H. Environmental Education Database by conducting site visits, inspecting air photos, communicating through email and phone to school and community representatives, doing data entry online and in Microsoft access, etc.; Use your FGCU courses to research, prepare, and adapt materials for adult EE lessons and displays as required by E.A.R.T.H. partner institutions and organizations; Use your analytic skills to evaluate southwest Florida adult EE resources according to the Earth Charter, the United Nations Decade of Education for Sustainable Development (UNDESD 2005-2014), the North American Association of Environmental Education (NAAEE), and other relevant standards.
ANIMALS: Use your FGCU biology courses to research, download, and analyze data on southwest Florida animals (endangered, rare, representative, and invasive species); Use your observational and computer abilities to record animals in protected areas, parks, and other locations, including sightings, behaviors, etc., for contribution to citizen science databases; Use your technical skills to work on scientific monitoring and animal care activities being conducted by E.A.R.T.H. partners.
ARTS: Use your creativity to develop graphic materials for use in EE activities and displays in southwest Florida, including print and digital media; Use your FGCU arts courses to develop educational materials that incorporate environmental information and concerns into the arts (visual, performing, and fine arts); Use your coordination skills to facilitate events and activities in dance, drama, vocal, music, drawing, painting, film, crafts, etc. that expose participants to the natural environment.
BOARD/COMMITTEE WORK: Use your administrative abilities to attend meetings, record minutes, and distribute summaries; Use your research skills to gather data and write reports for E.A.R.T.H. program reviews, project reports, etc., Use your internet skills to locate and track environmental education and environmental indicator resources from international, national, and state environmental organizations and agencies suitable for use in southwest Florida; Use your computer expertise to develop and manage bibliographies of useful and relevant print and digital media such as book lists and reviews, online lectures, documentaries, animations, etc.
COMPUTER/WEB: Use your systems administration expertise to assist with management and operation of GIS Labs, including software installation, technical support, and enabling access at scheduled hours; Use your GIS techniques to locate, download, and process information for the E.A.R.T.H. Environmental Computer Mapping Program, especially spatial and related data sets; Use your internet skills to research and track computer based activities on environmental topics suitable for adaption and use in southwest Florida; Use your programming expertise to customize computer mapping and other software programs for web-based data entry and searches, automatic data recording and processing equipment, and interactive and animated web displays.
EVENT PLANNING: Use your organizational skills and enthusiasm to plan and coordinate special events for programs and projects by E.A.R.T.H. and its partner organizations and schools; Use social media and other internet tools to recruit participation, track registrations and payments, and survey participants; Use your recreation and hospitality management skills to select and reserve meeting spaces and accommodation, coordinate media and technology needs, develop and prepare menus, calculate cost estimates, supervise temporary staff, and ensure appropriate clean up after events.
ENVIRONMENT: Use your organizational skills to prepare and deliver environmental events and activities, including field trips; Use your FGCU environmental courses to develop and update the E.A.R.T.H. Environmental Education Database; Use your ecological expertise to research, prepare, and adapt EE materials for lessons and displays needed by partner institutions and organizations; Use your analytical skills to evaluate K-12 EE lessons and resources in southwest Florida according to NAAEE, National Science Education Standards (NSES), Florida Sunshine State Standards, and other relevant criteria.
FUNDRAISING/MARKETING/PR: Use your public relations skills to assist with grant research and proposals, including finding and tracking sources of funds, writing grant proposals and reports, developing budgets, etc.; Use your advertising talents to create letters, newsletters, information packets, etc. for funders and partners; Use your media expertise to develop and manage social networking tools for E.A.R.T.H. programs and projects; Use your internet and social science expertise to develop, administer, and analyze online surveys.
FGCU CAMPUS: Use your organizational skills and enthusiasm to plan and lead tours of campus ecosystems (http://www.fgcu.edu/cas/cem/), green buildings (~/cas/ab7/), alternative energy (~/Facilities/SolarField.html), etc. for E.A.R.T.H. Service Learning students and participants from partner institutions and organizations; Use your familiarity with FGCU to record, collate, manage, analyze, and map campus environmental data; Use your computer expertise to design and prepare print and digital environmental education materials for use on campus.
MENTOR: Use your organizational and field skills to plan and conduct student visits to city, county, state, and federal parks and protected areas; Use the knowledge gained in your FGCU courses to mentor K-12 students in after-school, weekend, and vacation programs offered by E.A.R.T.H. partners; Use your ecological expertise to provide a model for and guidance on participation in citizen science environmental monitoring and data collection programs.
MUSEUM/SCIENCE CENTER: Use your technical expertise to prepare and deliver events and activities, including museum, science center, archaeology, and other tours in southwest Florida; Use your FGCU environmental courses to develop and update the E.A.R.T.H. Environmental Education Database; Use your FGCU science courses to research, prepare, and adapt EE materials for lessons and displays needed by E.A.R.T.H. partner institutions and organizations.
PUBLICATIONS: Use your writing expertise to prepare articles for E.A.R.T.H. print and digital publications; Use your journalism expertise to produce newsletters, etc.; Use your research skills to track, record, and analyze relevant articles in regional media.
TEENS: Use your FGCU environmental courses to assist middle and high school teachers and non-formal environmental educators with E.A.R.T.H. programs and activities for teenagers; Use your organizational skills to plan and co-ordinate student projects to protect and enhance natural areas and promote environmental stewardship.
TUTOR: Use your FGCU courses to assist E.A.R.T.H. staff with the development and assessment of computer mapping exercises for a wide variety of topics; Use your GIS expertise to deliver on- and off-campus training sessions; Use your topical knowledge to teach middle and high school, college and university students about environmental content in the natural and social sciences.
VOLUNTEER COORDINATOR: Use your coordination skills to plan and direct student and partner trainings and social events; Use your human relations talents to collect and manage E.A.R.T.H. Service Learning student information; Use your organizational expertise to schedule and track program and project activities and deliverables.