Field Day at Hartwick College's Pine Lake

Hartwick’s Pine Lake to Host Field Day for K-12 Students

May 15, 2014

Hartwick College's Pine Lake Institute for Environmental and Sustainability Studies (PLI) will hold a TAP-US ("Think, Act, Protect the Upper Susquehanna River") Field Day, with events focused on learning about the regional watershed, on Friday, June 6, 2014.  The day's activities will take place from 9:30 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. at the Hartwick College Pine Lake Environmental Campus located at 1894 Charlotte Creek Road in Oneonta, NY. The event, which is designed for kindergarten - 12th grade teachers and students in the Upper Susquehanna River basin, is free and open to the general public.

Field Day at Hartwick College's Pine LakeIn 2012, Hartwick's Pine Lake Institute received a three-year grant from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) to create a region-wide K-12 educational curriculum that focused on meaningful watershed educational experiences. The watershed lessons meet the NY Common Core standards. The goal of TAP-US is to increase knowledge, understanding, and action in order to protect and maintain the Upper Susquehanna River and Chesapeake Bay watersheds. TAP-US is a collaborative partnership between the NOAA Chesapeake Bay Watershed Education and Training Program (B-WET), Hartwick's Pine Lake Institute, Hartwick students and faculty, K-12 teachers in regional school districts, and Project Watershed - an initiative of the Izaak Walton League of America and Cornell Cooperative Extension Service-Onondaga County.

In regard to the program, Tami LaPilusa, M.S., Project Director of TAP-US, said "TAP-US emphasizes active, inquiry-based, outside-the-classroom teaching and learning experiences that engage students. Our second cohort of teachers have studied species richness in lakes & streams, mapped watersheds and developed run off models, and hiked a watershed top to bottom, while meeting specific learning outcomes for their school's curriculum standards. At the TAP-US Field Day, we're hosting a variety of activities for teachers and students to show them that learning about their local environment is not only important, but it's also fun."

Field Day at Hartwick College's Pine LakeThe event's field-based learning activities will engage the area's students, teachers, and community and provide a fun learning environment for all involved. The activities will include collecting and identifying stream critters, hiking, learning about soil & water quality, identifying invasive plant species and much more.

The goal of the event is to teach the participants what watersheds are, why they are important, how they can be studied, and what steps can be taken to protect and maintain the regional environment.

The TAP-US grant supports an annual week-long summer professional development workshop for regional teachers at Hartwick's Pine Lake Environmental Campus, as well as site visits to Pine Lake and other aquatic environments for school children. Teachers participating in the week-long workshop qualify for a stipend and schools can receive watershed equipment and supplies for their classrooms.

The TAP-US Field Day is sponsored by the Pine Lake Institute, NOAA, and Hartwick College.

For more information about Hartwick's TAP-US initiative, visit To register for the Field Day or to request more information on how to participate in the TAP-US collaborative, contact the Hartwick College Pine Lake Institute at 607-431-4520 or

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Hartwick College is a private liberal arts and sciences college of 1,500 students, located in Oneonta, NY, in the northern foothills of the Catskill Mountains. Hartwick's expansive curriculum emphasizes an experiential approach to the liberal arts. Through personalized teaching, collaborative research, a distinctive January Term, a wide range of internships, and vast study-abroad opportunities, Hartwick ensures that students are prepared for not just their first jobs, but for the world ahead. A Three-Year Bachelor's Degree Program and strong financial aid and scholarship offerings keep a Hartwick education affordable.

Contact: Valerie Capullo
Phone: 607-431-4031