Renovating the Itasca facility

The Itasca station is a beautifully serene, yet active, camp where students can learn.

The College of Biological Sciences is fund raising to rebuild some of its cabins at the Itasca Biological Station and Laboratories.

While these are small, seemingly insignificant structures in the grand scheme of the University, the effort should be taken seriously in the context of providing a suitable environment in which to study biology.

The station is a beautifully serene, yet active, camp where students can spend anywhere from a weekend helping with cleanup projects to full summers taking field classes in ornithology, mammalogy, entomology and even nature photography.

These are important parts of coursework for many students in biology-related majors, and it is important they have a place relatively nearby to learn. Practical education is always something we can have more of at the University.

Clearly, the station has continued to function without the renovations. But today is Beautiful U Day, and we should celebrate any effort to make all parts of our campus – no matter how remote – as pristine as possible. The College of Biological Sciences has built a reputation for outstanding programs and professors in many areas of biology, and the station’s success is a huge piece of that reputation.

The station renovations will cost approximately $200,000. The College of Biological Sciences has been fund raising since March to make these facilities livable for students and faculty members. It should be commended for its efforts to improve the station.

As students on this campus contemplate the value of keeping our immediate environment clean and pleasant, they should be mindful of opportunities to study outdoors in a natural environment that is yet rich with biodiversity and the value of keeping those areas just as pleasant for the people who study them.

Many projects at the University require creating something new, the Itasca Biological Station and Laboratories only need some repairs.