The Tidewater Project brought six St. Mary’s College of Maryland (SMCM) faculty and eight local experts together on October 8 and 9, 2017, to discuss cross-disciplinary approaches to effective climate change education. Headed by Dr. Barry Muchnick, Assistant Professor of Environmental Studies, the Tidewater Project centered on leveraging campus and community resources to strengthen climate literacy and sustainability awareness and to integrate sustainability into our institution’s strategic future.
Represented disciplines included: Art & Art History, Biology, Sociology, Political Science, Philosophy, and Religious Studies. Local experts and faculty gathered at the Brome Howard Inn to create new and renovated courses using innovative interdisciplinary teaching methods, discuss ideas for research projects, grants, and publications, expand their own knowledge about practical action to mitigate climate change, strengthen community ties, enhance wellness, and enrich connections to the natural world. Program organizers and participants were thrilled with the project outcomes, and valuable impacts continue to be realized as reimagined programming focusing on climate change education is implemented on campus.
The Tidewater Project was primarily funded by a University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science grant awarded to Dr. Muchnick, with additional support generously provided by SMCM’s Office of Sustainability. Organizers are exploring options to host similar workshops in future years to reach additional individuals, and to build on the positive momentum generated to date.