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February 11, 2011     The Catalina Islander
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February 11, 2011
 

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BETWEEN HARBORS Ellie Stevens Columnist BY ELLIE STEVENS USC Wrigley Institute for Environmental Studies When William Wrigley Jr. pur- chased Catalina Island from the Banning brothers in 1919, he did it with a heart for the environment and preservation. Since then, the Wrigley-led Santa Catalina Is- land Company has made numer- ous choices reflecting "his spirit. Among these decisions was ~he 1,965 deeding of five acres to USC for education and research. Two years after Big Fisherman's Cove was deeded to USC, in 1967, the Research Center's main lab was built. Thirty-four years after that, the site, now called the USC Wrigley Institute for Environmen- tal Studies. It boasts of eight labo- ratories that accommodate up to 24 researchers and 60 students, a full service waterfront to support marine-based research and educa- tion, conference facilities for up to 85 participants, housing for up to 65 overnight visitors and meal ser- vices for up to 150 diners. Alsdo, a range of housing options (from economically priced durra rooms to elegant accommodations in the new Boone Center for Environ- mental Leadership) and most im- portantly, proximity to a marine reserve and deep ocean waters. The Mission The Wrigley Institute's three main objectives are research, edu- cation and outreach. More specifi- cally, its mission is "to promote world class research and environ- mental literacy." This translates into programs that seek to inform people (of all generations) and equip them to think critically about the environment so that they can in turn make sound decisions based on factual evidence and first-hand experience. The Wrigley Institute is also focused on building bridg- es, not only with scientific com- munities worldwide, hut also with members of the general public. USC Professor Karla Heidelberg, a Two Harbors resident, says, "We are working hard at making USC Wrigley an open space, not closed offto the public. We want visitors to feel welcome, and we want to put this place on the map." Heidelberg and her husband, John, moved to the Island in 2006, where they live and work as full- time USC professors, specializing in marine genomics, biogeochem- istry, marine microbiology and biological oceanography. Their jobs include teaching classes to undergraduate students, mentor- ing graduate students doing in- dependent studies and serving as resident experts to scientists and visitors doing research. CATAUNA ISLANDER .................. The Undergraduate Element of the Collegiate Experience Some of the undergraduate classes that the Heidelbergs teach (along with a crew of rotating vis- iting USC and other institutional professors) are conducted in in- tensive four-week blocks. Daily schedules are broken down into morning seminars, afternoon labs and/or fieldwork and evening data work. The effect of this kind of collegiate learning is that it applies the academic theories presented in the seminars to the natural world during the labs and fieldwork, and as a result makes the science rel- evant. Typically undergraduate students come to the Island from a variety of institutions for either a short learning experience or a full semester program of block classes consecutively. The Graduate Element Graduate students (from a range of Universities) are invited to the Wrigley Institute during the sum- mer session. During their stay they conduct independent research and in return do educational outreach for the campus. Other Educational Elements Beyond the collegiate facet, the USC Wrigley Institute also of- fers programs to people of diverse ages and educational backgrounds. There are programs designed for elementary school students and their teachers, elementary school students and their parents, middle and high school students and their teachers as well as visitors on one- day visits to the Island. This year alone the campus served overall roughly 9,000 people. from the inner city, many of whom have never been in the ocean be- fore. Most are terrified when they first enter the water, but when they leave they have a tangible under- standing ar~d appreciation of the ocean." In William Wrigley's words, "Nothing great was ever achieved without enthusiasm." Upon visit- ing the campus at Big Fisherman's Cove, one cannot help but sense this enthusiasm, exuding from the professors, the staff, the students and the visitors. For more information, visit: http ://college.usc.edu/wrigley/ home/index.cfm The Lifestyle What Karla Heidelberg loves most about her job is that, "it is al- ways changing. I'm either on the Island teaching, on the mainland teaching, traveling or at sea, not to mention that I am very passionate about the ocean." Regarding the small to~vn of Two Harbors, Heidelberg says, "We can't imagine a better place to raise our kids; it's a place where people look after each other. Also, the people in town aren't wrapped up in the commercial realm; they have a great appreciation for .the Island." Gary Carr '54 FAVORITE SPORTS: football and baseball FAVORITE FOOD: apple pie with ice cream FAVORITE COLOR: red FAVORITE SINGERS: Tony Bennett and Vera Lynn FAVORITE SONG: "Pachuko Hop" FAVORITE MOVIE: "The Moon Is Blue" FAVORITE ACTORS: John Wayne and Gary Cooper PET PEEVE: sarca~stic girls FUTURE PLANS: Attend Long Beach State College and major in Physical Education The Motivation In Heidelberg's words, "We can't teach environmental aware- ness or the importance of the envi- ronment to people unless they can come and experience it," Heidel- berg says. "For this reason, the lab and the campus are vitally impor- tant. One of our programs is spe- cifically designed to serve students "the write stuff" Are you a writer, or would .like to be one for the Catalina Islander, The paper is seeking to expand its edito- rial horizons. New reporters and guest columnists are welcome. For more inform ation, contact the Islander pub- lisher at dan@cinews, us or call (310) 510-0500. February. 11 through February. 17 Shows Nightly at 7:30pm For More Information Call 310-510-0179 ........................................... Fdday,F:ebruary 11, 2o11~ 5