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Research Paper(s)

Professor Helene Savard

Ecosystem Management, Sustainable Living and Environmental Citizenship

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Ecosystem Management, Sustainable Living and Environmental Citizenship

Re: World Congress: final stage before its opening August 1st
Tue, 25 Jul 2000 13:55:42 -0500 (EST)
Helene Savard
Sir Sandford Fleming College

Opening statement:

Credit for Product is an ecosystem sustainability initiative that involves student(s), professor(s), and agent(s) from communities (private, public, non-government agency etc.). The goal is to produce a required product that is sustainable through time and space. In return the student portfolio builds receives valuable skills and contacts and course credits. The community gains from the product that may have otherwise been ignored or forsaken.


1) How would you successfully introduce a Credit for Product type initiative in your community.

2) What kind of projects and partnerships would you envision within your community?

I'm looking forward to hearing from you.


The School of Environmental Science and Technology is a Centre nestled with Sir Sandford Fleming College, Lindsay ON, Canada. Amongst the plethora of programs offered, the Ecosystem Management (EM) Technology Program hopefully leads students into actualizing, sustainably, what is experienced in their everyday lives.

The theme include holistic ecosystem management, sustainable living and environmental citizenship. Through lectures and research assignments it is hoped that students internalize these concepts. By ways of camps, labs, and seminars it is hoped that students externalize their thoughts and feelings. The focus is managing resources we use, treasure, or know not of today, such that these may be sustained for future generations.

Unique to the school, is the Credit for Product (C4P) course delivered at the third year level. C4P is a community-based partnership in which students have the opportunity to actualize what they may have internalized and externalized. Not only do students benefit but so does the community and the supervisors (faculty) in charge. Placements are completed in conjunction with Community Groups, Municipalities, Counties, First Nation Governments, Conservation Authorities, Provincial and Federal Ministries and private industry to name a few.

Students apply their skills and knowledge in the area of holistic ecosystem management learned during their college formation, and complete a research project in exchange for course credits. Products produced by the students include a business card, a proposal, memos, and a completed report.

The procedure requires an Agency to submit a project proposal and participate in the evaluation and guidance of the project. The project must pertain to the following fields: agriculture, anthropology, aquatics, monitoring/assessment, behaviour, biology, cultural heritage, ecology, forestry, GIS/GPS, landscaping, permaculture, restoration/rehabilitation, urban/rural, wildlife (others may apply). Proposals for C4P projects must show evidence of need in the in the community, demonstrate a relationship and links to the EM program, and specify future plans for sustainability. Agents must fund their project (meals, transportation, paper, etc.) though the programs provides for available equipment such as GPS, computers, software, aquatic and terrestrial monitoring tools. Original products are retained by the agent, and copies are catalogued and made accessible via the program's technical service office.

C4P has produces many fantastic products including the most recent:

(1) Stoney Lake Sampling; (2) Ponty Pool Management; (3) Wetland Drainage Project; (4) Terrestrial Ecosystem Reports; (5) Darlington Waterfowl Hunt; (6) Credit River Research; (7) Ouse River Restoration; (8) Balsam Lake Zooplankton; (9) Burleigh Falls, and Durham County Managed Forest Tax Incentive Plans; (10) Environmental Education; (11) River Otter Restoration Project. The project ends with an evening of Oral Presentations, and the finalization of the written report.

The end result, a happy triad (agent, student, faculty), community and hopefully, future stakeholders. We always hope that C4P remains an enjoyable experience in Ecosystem Management, Sustainable Living, Environmental Citizenship, and Earth care.

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