Mission: Ecology Project International improves and inspires science education and conservation efforts worldwide through field-based student-scientist partnerships.
Results: EPI is a conservation education organization that involves both local and visiting students in science-based field programs at 6 field sites across the U.S. and Latin America. EPI works in Costa Rica, Mexico, Ecuador and the Galapagos Islands, Belize, Hawaii and in the greater Yellowstone ecosystem. The premise of our mission is to involve locals in conservation efforts in order to make a bigger and more sustainable impact in the communities where we work. Your support helps us provide scholarships to underserved youth who wouldn't otherwise have the opportunity to participate in our programs.
Target demographics: High school students, ages 14-18, with special emphasis on youth that reside near our program sites.
Direct beneficiaries per year: 4,900
Geographic areas served: Belize, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Mexico, Hawaii and Montana
Programs: EPI inspires and improves science education efforts worldwide through field-based student-science partnerships. By engaging youth from Latin America and the U.S. in hands-on collaborative science and conservation projects that protect species and habitat in five countries, EPI bridges the gap between cultures and empowers the next generation of conservation leaders. We make a difference in the world one student at a time, fostering personal transformation of our students as they reconnect with the land and each other through our projects. EPI's vision is to create an ecologically literate society where the world's youth are empowered to take an active role in conservation.
I am a high school teacher and I chaperone groups of students on EPI's wonderful programs annually. I have taken trips to Costa Rica where we worked hands on with the endangered Leatherback Sea Turtles. We patrolled the nesting beaches at night and when a Leatherback came up to nest, we would collect various data and also ensure her nest was located in a good location. During the day, we hiked and witnessed first hand our lessons of biology, ecology and conservation. On a trip to Baja, we witnessed daily Blue and Bryde's whales. The students collaborated with the scientists to locate a whale and then successfully obtain a biopsy of the blubber and skin. All students have become super charged on these trips to persue a degree and a career in the science field. Also, many have come home to make drastic changes within their own lives and community. It is been really rewarding as a teacher to witness this change in a student. It is an impact only trips like the ones EPI offers can initiate.