Islands through Time

islands through time

Islands Through Time

At College of the Atlantic, we believe that students learn best when they get as much individual attention from faculty as possible. Groups of students will rotate through a variety of activities and learning experiences, while individuals or smaller groups will participate in intensive tutorials.

Over the course of twelve days you will:

  • Immerse yourself in ecology, culture, and history of downeast Maine, learning from an interdisciplinary perspective. You will study and explore oceanography, marine biology, field ecology, history, literature, writing, music, and media studies.
  • Spend several nights at the college’s two island field stations.
  • Visit whale feeding grounds, seal haul-outs, seabird colonies, and the rocky intertidal coastline.
  • Gain firsthand experience in data collection and research with whale and seabird experts at offshore island research stations.
  • Explore writing and literature with college professors while visiting the places you are reading about and honing your own writing skills.
  • Develop skills and potential in creative expression through music, video, or other media.
  • Work hard and challenge yourself, both intellectually and personally, through hands-on educational experiences, study, and reflection. 

Program Overview

Islands Through TimeThe program begins with an introduction to the ecology and culture of downeast Maine at College of the Atlantic's seaside campus.

The first few days of the course will focus on the marine ecology, literature, and the cultural history of the Maine coastline. Next, we will  journey to the college's field stations on Mt. Desert Rock and Great Duck Island, sleeping in the islands' light stations and experiencing firsthand the joys and challenges of marine field research.

Islands Through TimeReturning to shore, we will explore the traditional livelihoods practiced by some of those who have made this coast their home and consider how the changing environment has shaped their experiences. Students will work on thought-provoking and rigorous academic assignments in multiple disciplines, expressing themselves through writing, music, and photography.

Throughout the course, students will work directly with College of the Atlantic faculty members, writing extensively about their experiences, and working as part of a team to develop a multimedia presentation to share with their professors, peers, and the public at the end of the session. This program is limited to 16 students.

3.3 Semester Credits


Program faculty will include:

Sean Todd, PhD — Marine Mammalogy — Read Faculty Bio
Karen Waldron, PhD — Literature, Writing — Read Faculty Bio
John Anderson, PhD — Zoology, Behavioral Ecology — Read Faculty Bio
Helen Hess, PhD — Invertebrate Zoology, Marine Biology — Read Faculty Bio
John Cooper, MA — Music — Read Faculty Bio

Program Dates & Costs

July 27–August 8, 2014

Early-bird Rate: $3,550

Apply by March 28

Regular Rate: $3,750

Rates are all-inclusive: food, lodging, sea travel, and college credit

Limited financial aid is available


2014 Application Form

Early-bird Applications

Due March 28th, 2014

Regular Applications 

Due by May 5th, 2014

Please note: Our 2014 program is full and we are no longer accepting applications. 

Contact Information

Marie Stivers, Coordinator


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