Service-Learning and Alternative Spring Break
Leaders in Conservation, Education & Service Programs since 1995
Our alternative break and service-learning programs have gained a reputation for being one of the best experiences in natural resources and environmental action since their creation in 1996. We offer experiences that inspire students and involve them in significant projects that restore the health of critical wildlife habitats while exposing issues that may never be apparent to a casual visitor to the Colorado Plateau.
Plateau Restoration’s all-inclusive program is one of the easiest for school coordinators to set up. (Click here for testimonials and past participants)
All of our programs feature awesome scenery, spirited presentations by experienced educators on natural history, geology, human history and resource issues, educational handouts and project overviews that highlight the importance of the project work. We engage students in reflection on their contribution, what they have learned and how to apply it to issues at home. Plateau Restoration goes through extensive pre-project planning effort to ensure that students can experience as much of this awe-inspiring landscape as possible during their stay.
We provide camping, as arranged, all group equipment, food service, participant equipment lists and educational materials. For the scheduled day off we can provide a raft trip on the Colorado River or a tour of Arches National Park. We are fully insured and licensed and our project leaders have over twenty years of outdoor guiding experience and are certified in wilderness medicine. The 2017 base price for an Alternative Spring Break program is $250 per student (6 person minimum). Typical group sizes are 12 students although we are able to accommodate other group sizes and other schedules.
Reservations are on a first-come, first-served basis and we often have dozens of schools vying for the same spring break weeks. Please let us know as soon as possible if you would like to reserve a date by calling or emailing the information via the Contact Us link. To secure your spot for this spring we will need a non-refundable reservation fee of $250, payable by check or credit card. Feel free to contact us by e-mail or phone at 435-259-7733 or toll- free 1-866-202-1847 if you have other questions.
TYPICAL PROGRAM OUTLINE
Each program is unique. An example Service Learning Week Schedule for a 5-night, 6- day service-learning program is outlined below. The program is field-based and involves project work related to native habitat protection and restoration. Projects may include any or all of the following aspects: trail delineation and elimination of social trails, fence- building to protect re-vegetation sites, erosion control, planting native vegetation in impacted sites and exotic species removal.
Students will learn:
- Fundamentals of conservation biology including elements of healthy native habitats and threats to habitats on desert uplands and riparian areas on the Colorado Plateau.
- Ecosystems of desert upland and riparian zones of the Colorado Plateau.
- Identification of key native and non-native plant species of the area.
- Adaptations of plants to desert environments and strategies of invasive species to gain a competitive edge.
- Public land management agencies, their mandates and land use issues.
- Soil characteristics of healthy and impacted habitats.
- Basic restoration techniques and strategies including erosion control, control of exotic species and re-vegetation.
Day 1: Discussion: (4hrs)
– Introduction to physical characteristics and desert ecosystems of the Colorado Plateau.
– Threats to native habitats (soil erosion, loss of vegetation and biological soil crusts, landscape fragmentation, invasive species, altered river flows, etc). Project Work Orientation to project (2hrs)
Day 2: Discussion (2 hrs)
– Native and non-native plants (plant identification, adaptations to desert environments, exotic species invasion)
– Re-vegetation strategies (species selection, microclimates, planting techniques)
– Project work (8hrs)
Day 3: Field Trip or free day: previous restoration projects and survey of land management practices (BLM, NPS, State) plus natural history of these unique areas
– All-day rafting trip on the Colorado River, Moab Daily section OR
– All-day van and hiking tour of Arches National Park and adjacent lands
Day 4: Discussion (2hrs)
– Soil characteristics and geomorphology
– Project work (8hrs)
Day 5: Discussion (2hrs)
– Land management agencies and land use issues.
– Project work (8hrs)
Day 6: Program summary and evaluation (2hrs)
Actual day-to-day schedule may vary depending on weather and other factors. Slight adjustments to this schedule can be made to accommodate travel arrangements.
RATES AND SERVICES
- Project leadership and instruction by primary PRI staff, all necessary tools provided.
- Field trip / free day (activities can include one day river trip on the Colorado River or van and hiking tour of Arches National Park for a modest additional fee, with transportation, permit fees, safety equipment, certified guides, and lunch).
- Full food service – includes three full meals per day, from dinner on Day 1 through lunch on Day 6, snacks and non-alcoholic beverages. We provide the highest quality, health-oriented menu items with abundant fresh fruits and vegetables, and vegetarian options at every meal.
- Camping (sleeping bags rated to 15 degrees, sleeping pads and shared tents may be provided)
Other optional services we can provide include (by arrangement):
- 15-passenger van transportation between Moab and Grand Junction airport (call for pricing)
- other van transportation within Moab, to and from project sites, etc. (call for pricing)
Service-Learning activities are ideal for school field trips, families, or corporate team- building. Other than during spring break weekend, we can design a custom program to suit your group. Unless we have significant grant underwriting, project set-up and leadership will carry a fee. Contact us for more information.