Managing for Multiple Uses & Enhancing Ecosystem Services on Educational Landscapes

Ithaca College owns 560 acres of natural areas managed as a four-parcel conservation reserve system by students, faculty, and staff.  

            Ithaca College Natural Lands (or ICNL) has built a strong, positive presence on campus since 2004.  ICNL management follows a formal long-term plan written by students and approved in 2012 by the College-wide ICNL Committee.  More courses every year use the ICNL reserves as their outdoor classroom, reaffirming their value as educational working landscapes.  The core team of students managing the Natural Lands on a day-to-day basis has grown to 20+ members, with paid interns mentoring apprentices enrolled for course credit in the Student Intern Training (SIT) Program.  The ICNL Staff and Committee collaborate widely across the campus community, involving people from several different Schools and organizations.  Projects underway on ICNL reserves are diverse, including ecological research, environmental education, volunteer stewardship, recreation trail maintenance, and commercial production of non-timber forest resources.  

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