High school students represent future owners of forested land and the next generation of forest professionals. To enhance public knowledge of forest management and to demonstrate investigations of forest issues, Allegheny College has adopted a “learn-by-doing” approach to educate high school students about forest issues: Penn's Woods Project. 

The Issues We Are Addressing

Forests are a critically important natural resource in Pennsylvania. According to the Pennsylvania Forestry Association, the Commonwealth is widely recognized as the nation’s most abundant source of hardwoods. Despite the economic and ecological importance of our forests, many forest harvest operations employ approaches that compromise the long-term environmental and economic integrity of this natural resource. Although 80% of Pennsylvania’s forests are owned by about a half million private forest land-owners, they frequently lack the knowledge and tools to manage and harvest forests for long-term viability.

Module Design

Using hands-on modules, students will be exposed to true scientific fieldwork that demonstrates how forest professionals conduct their work. Each topic includes a summary of the problem, step-by-step experiments, and a list of helpful resources for teachers to use as references. Modules include the materials and instructions to help students set up experiments. The modules also include recommendations for additional research using the module as a base, but require the students and teachers to formulate their own experimental questions and design. All documents provided in the module kits are printable via this website.