LCO College Students Travel to Costa Rica

Tuesday, December 5, 2017 | by Nicole Smith l LCO Communications Director |

The LCO College will be having two students along with their faculty mentor travel to Costa Rica for thirteen days in December to conduct short-term scientific research projects.

Student Julia Buck will examine soil compaction and porosity in logged versus undisturbed forests, while Trent Strapon will use trail-cams to compare wildlife observed in the tropical forests to those observed in northern Wisconsin in forests of the same age on similar sites. He will then attempt to determine the ecological reasons for the differences and similarities in types of wildlife.

Prof. Michael Heim, science faculty member at the college, will assist them with implementing their field projects including experimental design, data gathering, and analysis to prepare for publication and/or a presentation of results at a local, regional, or national conference.

Their research will be conducted around the mid-elevation Las Cruces Biological Station, a seven-hour drive south of the capital, San Jose. While there they will also meet the local people, and learn of their culture and customs.

The program that they are a part of is called the Costa Rica International Research Experience and is funded by a National Science Foundation grant administered thru Salish-Kootenai College. Any student attending a tribal college was eligible to participate.

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