• Costa Rica and Panama field course 2016
  • Cuba field course 2016-17
  • Explore. Research. Conserve.

Welcome to CHANCE

Today, humanity faces this reality – the environment is broken most of which is a result of negative human impact on the health (loss of biodiversity) of our world's ecosystems.

CHANCE (Connecting Humans and Nature through Conservation Experiences) is an accredited environmental education and engaged scholarship program, whose overarching goal is to teach conservation biology and global sustainability at the frontline. To do this, CHANCE creates unique learning environments which immerse its participants, students and teachers, in real-world research and conservation efforts through innovative online curriculum and field courses.

The ultimate goal of CHANCE is to prepare global-minded citizens who understand the importance of restoring and protecting the biodiversity of our planet's ecosystems, and who are willing to address the challenges of our time such as energy, air, food, water, and climate change through their efforts.

Since ecosystems cross national borders, CHANCE strives to view, and to define sustainable answers for, environmental realities from a global perspective.

About CHANCE »
Online Modules. Try one today

Donate To CHANCE

CHANCE is expanding our community conservation efforts and we need your help! As part of our international field courses, we assist with reforestation efforts and turtle rookery preservation efforts. Your donations will go towards purchasing saplings for participants to plant or materials to build turtle nest protective enclosures.

Donate »

CHANCE Newswire

24 August 2016
Tiger Land
China's first national parks include a refuge for the world's largest cat. What scientists from Beijing Normal University (BNU) have learned has helped convince the central government to create a 15,000-squarekilo-meter national park—60% larger than Yellowstone—that could save the Siberian tiger from extinction.
Read Science article »

13 August 2016
Photo credit:YUSUKE SUDO
Okinawa mozuku: The Treasure Under the Sea
Mozuku is a unique Okinawan seaweed. Scientifically known as Cladosiphon okamuranus, this alga is popular in Japanese cuisine, and it has been farmed for more than 35 years. The cultivation of this seaweed is a key element in the economy of Okinawa: In 2006, the Japanese Cabinet Office estimated a 20,000 ton production, with an economic value of billions of Yen. 99% of this seaweed is produced in Okinawa, almost entirely farmed by humans. When in 2015 the production dropped for causes related with the higher temperature of the ocean, political institutions and research centres started to coordinate in order to develop a strategy to preserve this Okinawan treasure.
Read AAAS article »

13 August 2016
Greenland Shark Greenland Shark Revealed to Have Longest Life Expectancy of all Vertebrates
An international team of scientists led by the University of Copenhagen and including the University of Oxford has found that the Greenland shark has a life expectancy of at least 272 years. This discovery shows it is the longest living vertebrate known to science, exceeding even bowhead whales, turtles and tortoises. The findings are published in latest issue of the journal, Science.
Read University of Oxford News & Events »

01 August 2016
Student collecting litter along a waterway in ChinaThinking Beyond the Classroom
Students engage in conservation efforts through CHANCE China program.
Read Penn State News »

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Field Courses

Cuba 2016 Field Course
December 27, 2016 - January 6, 2017

The newest CHANCE field program, Cuba - Environmental Protection, Resource Management and the Sustainability of a Developing Nation, is an immersive research and conservation journey in western Cuba. It is a collaboration between The Pennsylvania State University, Cuba Marine Research & Conservation Program - a project of the Ocean Foundation, and Center for Marine Research (CIM) of the University of Havana, and is comprised of an online education and an international field course. Participants will evaluate the biodiversity of both terrestrial and marine protected habitats, the exploitation of environmental resources, and the policies and practices needed to enhance both Cuba’s current and future needs to sustain its natural ecosystems. The conservation efforts for this session include working in a sea turtle rookery and removal of invasive species.

Field Course Website »

Costa Rica & Panama advertisementCosta Rica 2016 Field Course
July 3-17, 2016

We are excited to once again collaborate with the Organization for Tropical Studies (OTS)/La Selva on this program in Costa Rica. This international program, Conservation Biology and Sustainability of Select Tropical Ecosystems, is comprised of a spring 2016 online course and a summer 2016 field course. Participants will work side-by-side select field scientists in Costa Rica whose research focus are in areas of tropical rain forest ecology and environmental science in the wake of climate change realities. The conservation efforts for this session include working in a sea turtle rookery and assisting with reforestation efforts.

Field Course Website »

China 2015 Field Course

Our greatest thanks go to all the partners, professors, researchers and participants for all the hard work and dedication to the success of this field course. Visit the field course website to see a photo album from our trip.


Meet Our Newest Sponsor

O2 emc LogoCHANCE would like to recognize its newest sponsor, O2 emc, a company focused on developing and owning large scale ground-mounted solar power plants in the Southeast United States. Each solar project is developed to maximize profitability for investors, work opportunities for local contractors, as well as training and educational opportunities for local residents.

O2 emc has developed more than 80 Megawatts of solar farms in North Carolina which generate more power than almost 12,000 average US homes consume, offsetting harmful emissions that would have been produced if the same amount of power were generated by burning fossil fuels. In total, O2 emc has developed more than $250 million in investment. http://www.o2emc.com/about-o2-emc

O2 emc leverages an in-depth understanding of state energy policy, existing energy infrastructure, and project ownership and tax structuring, combined with relationships with utilities to develop successful and profitable turnkey solar power plants.

CHANCE thanks O2 emc for its recent donation to our Trees and Turtles Conservation fund. Their donation will support our reforestation and turtle rookery efforts in Costa Rica this summer.

Follow CHANCE on Facebook to see the conservation efforts in action this July 3-17.

Donate »

Featured Video

CHANCE in China

Students from Penn State University, Jiangnan University and Nanjing University spent 17 days in China in July 2015 exploring the Yangtze River watershed and helping each other to become conservationists.

Other CHANCE featured videos »

CHANCE Fellows

24 August 2016
Photo of Dorothy, a CHANCE 2014 Fellow

Dorothy Mwambazi, CHANCE 2014 Fellow, graduated with a bachelors degree in environmental engineering from Jiangnan University, Wuxi, China. She has just been accepted into a Young Expert Program (Agrofood) carried out jointly by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Netherlands, Netherlands Water Partnership (NWP), and the Food & Business Knowledge Platform. She will be employed under the World Wide Fund (WWF) for Nature Zambia. Her work will involve, but not be limited to, providing expert knowledge in conservation agriculture, supporting climate smart technologies in marginal areas, demonstrating the environmental and social impact of WWF Zambia’s climate smart agriculture initiatives, as well as serving as a liaise officer between WWF Zambia Conservation Agriculture team and local experts. You are bettering the world, Dorothy!!!

Our Other Fellows »

Resources For Educators

18 August 2016
Smiling child NAAEE Publications
Looking for insights on developing Environmental Education activities that lead to meaningful behavior change? Want to figure out which evaluation method will help increase the effectiveness of your program? North American Association for Environmental Education (NAAEE) publications provide the targeted information you need to enhance your knowledge and skills as an environmental educator. As a member, you'll get a discount on these valuable resources.
Visit NAAEE website »

01 August 2016
NABT logoReminder: Posters Being Accepted for NABT2016
NABT is currently accepting posters for the NABT Professional Development Conference in Denver. Details below:

GPC’s Local to Global: Citizen Science Across Borders

Citizen Science equates to the collection and analysis of real data relating to the natural world by members of the general public, typically as part of a collaborative project with professional scientists. At the 4th Annual Poster Session, the NABT Global Perspectives Committee’s will highlight “Local to Global: Citizen Science Across Borders” with an interactive poster session featuring innovative and successful citizen science projects. This session will also be on Saturday, November 5th.

Each poster will highlight how its project can help teachers create collaborations between countries to explore and analyze real data, and enrich learning through the use of interdisciplinary content and global perspectives.

Please send a title, names of author(s) with college/university/organizational affiliation(s), contact information, and an abstract (up to 200 words) to the committee secretary, Jacqueline McLaughlin at jxm57@psu.edu. Please use "2016 Global Perspectives Poster Proposal" in the subject header.

The proposal submission deadline for GPC Posters is August 31, 2016.

01 August 2016
Save the Rainforest logoSave the Rainforest Looking for Take Flight Fellows
High school science teachers who are interested in traveling to the tropics to learn about rainforest ecology and conservation are invited to apply for a Save the Rainforest fellowship to attend a Take Flight program in Belize, Panama or Costa Rica in the summer of 2017. Fellows will travel for free to Belize, Panama or Costa Rica and will be eligible to earn three graduate credits in education through Edgewood College.

The deadline to apply is October 1, 2016. Applications and information about the program can be requested at saverfn@cybermesa.com.

Save the Rainforest, Inc., is a 501c3 non-profit organization.

Learn more

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Resources For Students

01 August 2016
Close up of a turtle's faceJoin the North American Association for Environmental Education's (NAAEE) eePRO!!
Anyone can join eePRO—the global community of environmental educators—where you can find and post jobs, events, and resources, connect with other EE professionals, and participate in professional development opportunities. NAAEE members get added benefits, like the ability to comment, discuss specific topics in Groups pages, connect with others who have similar interests in the field, and more. Join eePRO today!

Learn more »

13 July 2016

Request for Proposals
The Society for Conservation Biology is pleased to solicit applications for the David H. Smith Conservation Research Fellowship Program. These two year postdoctoral fellowships provide support for outstanding early-career scientists from around the globe to improve and expand their research skills while directing their efforts towards conservation problems of pressing concern for the United States.

Individuals who want to better link conservation science and theory with policy and management are encouraged to apply. We envision that the cadre of scientists supported by the Smith Fellows Program will eventually assume leadership positions across the field of conservation science. Fellows are selected on the basis of innovation, potential for leadership and strength of proposal.

The deadline for receipt of application materials is 9 September 2016.
For detailed proposal guidelines »

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