Blackfeet Community College’s Native Science Field Center offers informal science education programming and serves as resource center for educators and students. The NSFC provides year around activities such as Blackfeet Skies presentations using the portable planetarium and culturally relevant science education field activities. The center emphasizes “outdoor classrooms” and field monitoring programs that inventory native plants and document their distribution, along with traditional and medicinal uses. At the Native Science Field Center’s outdoor classroom sites in the mountains and plains, adults and youth conduct identification and/or inventories of native plants and document their relationships within local watersheds.
Partnerships offered through the Blackfeet Community College Native Science Field Centers include:
Native Science Fellows, 2011-2014
Hopa Mountain and BCC Native Science Field Center are partnered together to increase Native American student participation in the geosciences, in an effort to engage students in higher education and geosciences careers. There is a pressing need for more Native American geosciences professionals, especially in the Northern Rockies where 14 tribes manage 7 million acres of land and natural resources.
This high school, tribal college, and university fellowship program helps to support and train the next generation of tribal environmental professionals, and also help ensure that their geosciences training is relevant to their future work. Tribal College/University Fellowship applications can be accessed by students, each fall and spring semester at http://www.hopamountain.org. The annual weeklong High School Native Science Fellows Summer Institute applications are distributed at the end of each school year and submitted to Blackfeet Community College Native Science Field Center each summer.
Since May 2009, Wildlife Conservation Society with tribal members have convened Tribal elders and members at large from all four Blackfoot Confederacy Tribes including the Siksika, Pikanii, Amskapipikani, and Kainai. As a result of a series of dialogues the tribes have crafted a trans boundary conservation vision and charted a pathway, the Iinnii Initiative, to encourage cooperation in wildlife conservation and repatriation of buffalo. This partnership agreement is intended to enable students and staff to participate in meeting discussions, conservation planning, wildlife research and community events associated with this conservation initiative.
Blackfeet Community College partnered with Wildlife Conservation Society establishing a unique opportunity to work together in the “Crown of the Continent” to meet mutual interests by supporting student involvement in conservation activities and engagement in future field science and research. The project agreement is designed to support Blackfeet student interns and BCC staff in supporting research, education and outreach activities of the Iinnii Initiative and Wildlife Conservation Society conservation projects in this region.