Teacher Expeditions

Cost: each trip is $650 for Alaska teachers who integrate these lesson into their classes.  Tuition for all others is $950.  Three continuing education credits can be earned by registering via University of Alaska Southeast ($75 additional, charged by UAS). 

Registration preference is given to Southeast Alaska teachers, and Alaska teachers generally.  Courses are listed below.


Summer 2015 courses are completed, Summer 2016 is coming soon!  To be notified as courses are posted, email info@discoverysoutheast.org.



Ecology 'out-the-road:' Eagle River to Berners BayJuly 27-31, 2015

Some of Southeast's wildest, most pristine watersheds are just out the road--and they're accessible for your classroom too.  This trip dives into their fascinating natural and cultural history, and takes down all the barriers for you to work with your classes outdoors right here in Juneau. Working with Discovery Southeast Naturalists Richard Carstensen, we'll explore the ecology of this amazing area and develop a teaching manual for future classroom use.  We hope to include a short kayaking and camping component to our otherwise day hiking course based out of the Methodist Camp (available for rental during the school year).  

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Juneau Ice Field from Above and Below, July 12-17, 2015

Looking at the Mendenhall Glacier, do you ever feel like you're just seeing the tip of the ice berg???  This five day trip is meant to open it up like a book.  Spending three days at the ice field at Camp 17 and two days at sea level, this course allows teachers to explore Juneau's most iconic landform, in coordination with the Juneau Icefield Research Program.  Instruction by Cathy Connor and Mike Hekkers covers glaciology and geology.  Richard Carstensen will lead lessons on the natural history of recently de-glaciated areas, and Steve Merli will address techniques for working with classrooms outdoors.

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Brown Bears of Admiralty Island, Pack Creek,  June 10-16, 2015
Accessing the renowned bear habitat of Pack Creek by float plane, teachers camp and kayak in this stunning, wild area for five days.  This is a behind the scenes experience of an area most tourists only get to peek into.  Teachers will immerse themselves in this astounding place with a knowledgable instructor and an experienced guide, learning the natural history of the area and its bears, and exploring how to bring those lessons alive for their classes.This trip is made possible, and affordable for teachers, thanks to generous support from Coeur Alaska!

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 Courses not offered 2015:


Seals, Glaciers, and Climate Change:  Kayaking the Wilderness of Endicott Arm

Teachers spend five days kayaking and camping in Endicott Arm, with instruction from the US Forest Service.  Topics include glaciers and climate change as well as wilderness and wildlife, with a focus on seals and pupping.  Endicott Arm is an intimate, gorgeous, remote, and stunning location to learn about wilderness, glaciers, and climate change.



Whales of Icy Strait

Study the behavior, habitat and management issues of humpback whales and other marine mammals such as sea lions, seals and killer whales while kayaking in Icy Strait and camping along the north shore of Chichagof Island. We will explore the ecological connections between terrestrial and marine systems and the effects of human use patterns on the landscape through forest, meadow and stream walks in the uplands bordering these rich marine mammal feeding waters.



For information about additional  opportunities for teachers, check out our partner Alaska Geographic.




About Teacher Expeditions... 

Earn three professional development (500 level) credits from the University of Alaska Southeast while exploring Southeast Alaska's outstanding natural areas. Expeditions are led by veteran naturalists with many years of field experience. 

These professional-level courses devote five days or more to field study of the habits of some of the region's most iconic animals as a means to understanding the broader ecology of the area. Opportunities abound to closely observe the behavior and habitat of Alaska's world-renowned animals, deepening the understanding how humans interact with other species and what it takes to keep those relationships healthy. Exploring the American wilderness ideal is an integral part of each course.

In addition to natural history, you will learn the kayaking, hiking and camping skills needed to safely and comfortably travel in wild country. We provide group gear and all meals, and can advise you on personal items you may wish to bring along. 

Watch a clip from one of our previous expeditions at Pack Creek on Admiralty Island. Former local USFS Admiralty Island Wilderness Manager John Neary led educators into brown bear territories on the island.