...a valuable tool for students. The course allows students to apply what they have learned from class and lab work, to various real world situations. Not only do students learn from each individual manager, but they are also able to critique each situation. Discussions between peers and professors allows students to draw upon other viewpoints. Differing opinions allow students to grow and improve upon their individual model they feel should be applied to each situation. Each interaction between students allows for networking and camaraderie, which promotes future cooperation within the industry and between different institutes.
Ecology of Grazing Lands Systems is a field oriented course that takes participants into diverse grazing lands ecosystems across several states and may include other countries. Students learn about:
- The components and functions of grazing lands and how these vary in different ecoregions.
- Research needs, objectives and techniques in soil-plant-animal research.
- Forage-livestock ecology and systems in grazing lands (cropland, pastureland, range land and forestland).
- The role of forages in conservation practices, wildlife habitat, and sustainable agriculture.
- Industries involved with forages and livestock.
This graduate level course includes a two-week field trip open to students who meet the qualifications set by their professor. Graduate credit is received through the students home institution and is credited to their chosen program of study. Enrollment is limited to about 30 students and is taught during the summer. At least two faculty members will participate in the field trip in its entirety each time that the class is offered. Routes for the field trip will be different each time the course is offered, and students will travel through widely divergent ecosystems. International trips may be offered in some years. A student can enroll for this course more than once, but with no additional credit and pending available space.