Monthly Newsletter

This Just In!

A monthly newsletter published by the
Macalester Environmental Studies Department

February 26, 2014

Any upcoming events, job opportunities, new internships, or other environmental news received by the ES Department are included in this newsletter. More information on the items listed in This Just In! can be received by contacting the ES Department. This issue of This Just In! and archived issues can be found at:

In This Issue.... 

1.  Designing for Minnesota's Changing Climate - March 5 & 6
2.  Powerful Conversations - March 5
3.  19th Annual Building Bridges Conference - March 8
4.  Summer Opportunity with the USDA Forest Service
5.  Summer Opportunity with Tree Trust
6.  Summer Job Opportunity with Watershed Stewardship Program
7.  Wilderness Field Station Summer Program
8.  Internships

1.  Designing for Minnesota's Changing Climate - March 5 & 12

Designing for Minnesota's Changing Climate (A Mini Series)

Minnesota’s climate is changing. In fact, faster than most of the country. Spring floods, summer droughts, warmer nighttime temperatures, higher humidity, and extreme weather events are becoming common. Designing a sustainable landscape and home is becoming more challenging! Please join us as we explore Minnesota’s ecology, the changing conditions, and ways to design for these changes.

Ecological Context and Changing Conditions
Date:  Wednesday, March 5, 2014, doors open at 6; series is 7-9 p.m.
  Steve Thomforde
Location:  Bryant Lake Bowl, 810 West Lake Street, Minneapolis
All sites, regardless of scale, have an ecological context. This context has changed dramatically through the ages, having been shaped by geological processes, First Americans, the ice ages, European settlement, massive disruptions to natural systems, and more.  Ecologist Steve Thomforde will provide a comprehensive overview of the history and present conditions in Minnesota, providing an essential context for effective Permaculture design.  We will also discuss challenges and opportunities for positive change.

Building Resilient Systems in a time of Climate Change
Date:  Wednesday, March 12, 2014, doors open at 6; series is 7-9 p.m.
Paula Westmoreland and Bruce Blair
Location:  Bryant Lake Bowl, 810 West Lake Street, Minneapolis
Permaculture design seeks to build restorative, ecologically intensive systems to holistically meet our needs.  Now that we have been introduced to the challenges and opportunities before us, it is time to focus on a how we can effectively respond to the changing conditions in Minnesota.  In this session, we will review climate predictions and explore ways we can re-pattern our own actions and adjust our designs to help insure an abundant future.

2.  Powerful Conversations - March 5

Interested in energy policy in the Twin Cities? Passionate about securing a brighter energy future for Minnesotans? Looking for some free food to brighten your Wednesday afternoon?

Come to Powerful Conversations @ Mac (Wednesday, March 5, 12 noon, in Olin-Rice 101) to learn more about these issues and how you can get involved! This lunch talk is coordinated by Community Power, a local energy non-profit working to secure clean, local, equitable, affordable, and reliable energy for all of Minnesota.

The talk will focus specifically on the basics of utilities networks, the problems currently facing Minneapolis' relations with energy providers like Xcel and CenterPoint, and the ways in which community members can help. Community Power is also looking for policy-oriented students to get involved at the capitol during this upcoming legislative session--come to the talk for more details!

If you have any questions, feel free to email

3.  19th Annual Building Bridges Conference - March 8

Van Jones, American environmentalist advocate, civil rights activist, and attorney, and Alexie Torres-Fleming, co-founder of the Bronx River Alliance and the Southern Bronx Watershed Alliance, are this year's keynote speakers at the 19th Annual Building Bridges Conference titled "Disposable Communities? Demanding Environmental Justice." This conference takes place on Saturday, March 8, 2014, at Gustavus Adolphus College.

This student-led social justice conference is open to the public.  Tickets are required and may be purchased in advance.  For more information, visit or call 507-933-7449.  Tickets can be ordered at or call 507-933-7520.

4.  Summer Opportunity Available with the USDA Forest Service

Summer employment is available at the Midwest and Northeastern National Forests.  There are a variety of positions available.  In some cases housing is available at a low cost.  Apply through and act quickly as many jobs are only taking applications for a short window.  Best advice is:

  • Be flexible and be willing to where the jobs are to get experience
  • Get your resume on – you can upload one or it is recommended by some to enter you own.  In this website you are not space limited and the resume is a very important as this one place where HR specialists determine if you are qualified for the job
  • Upload your transcript.

Questions:  Contact Teri Heyer,, 651-649-5239

5.  Summer Job Opportunity with Tree Trust

Tree Trust is seeking persons interested in working as crew leaders for our Youth Conservation Corps summer program. Tree Trust operates crews of youth employed on landscape and construction projects in parks throughout the Twin Cities metro area including Minneapolis, St. Paul and all surrounding counties.

For more information:

6.  Summer Job Opportunity with Watershed Stewardship Program

The Watershed Stewardship Program (WSP) at Paul Smith's College in New York State is a community‑based program designed primarily to educate the public about aquatic invasive species (AIS) issues pertaining to specific watersheds. Stewards interact with visitors at boat ramps and perform watercraft inspections intended to prevent the transport of AIS.

Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Public education and natural/cultural history interpretation.
  • Perform watercraft inspections; remove AIS, operation of boat wash station (where present).
  • Data collection: boat launch use patterns, AIS removal.
  • Service projects (one day per week): invasive species mapping and control, loon monitoring, trail maintenance, write newsletter, update social media, environmental education with all ages and presentations.
  • Report writing.

For more information:

7.  Wilderness Field Station Summer Program

Imagine that you are sampling aquatic organisms in an ecosystem where the water is so clean you can actually drink it straight from the lake! Imagine you are writing your Nature Writing essay propped against a rock looking up a lake where the forest stretches unbroken for miles and you see no human sign, and hear no human sound! Imagine you satisfy your lab science requirement studying island biogeography on a 10-day canoe trip into the unfragmented wilderness of Ontario's Quetico Provincial Park. Imagine you are describing the evolving dynamics of your own group in your journal around a campfire, as wolves howl in the distance. Imagine you are taking a class at the Coe College Wilderness Field Station.

The Wilderness Field Station is a unique summer program of biological field study in the Superior National Forest in Northern Minnesota. All classes are very small and personal. All courses integrate lectures and laboratory investigation with frequent canoe outings.

2014 Undergradute Schedule and Deadlines:
Session I begins June 14 and ends July 12
Session II begins July 12 and ends August 7

Application deadlines:
Early application, March 15, 2014
Regular deadline: April 28, 2014

For more information:

8.  Internships

The Macalester Internship Office is now creating a list of environmentally-related internships and sending them to the Environmental Studies office every other week.  The ES Office will forward this list to all Environmental Studies majors and minors, so please look for these in your email.

Other internship opportunities can be found at:

Any questions regarding this newsletter or to be removed from the mailing list, contact Ann Esson at