History of the Trail
Constructed in 1985 by students in the campus' Biology Club, the Penn State New Kensington Nature Trail has been an important resource in both the Biology curriculum and in summer community programs sponsored by our campus. The Trail, as originally designed, is a loop through a patchwork of vegetative communities that illustrate the human-impacted ecosystems and active, second-growth forests of western Pennsylvania. Ecosystem change ("succession") is the major theme of this nature trail.
In the fall of 1999, the Alcoa Foundation generously gave the New Kensington
campus a grant to not only clean up and refurbish the Nature Trail, but also to
enable Dr. William Hamilton and Ms. Deborah Sillman of the New Kensington
Biology Department to establish this "Virtual Nature
Trail" website based on the habitats and species seen along the campus
Trail. These two projects are the core of our "Environmental Learning Center"
which is dedicated to
improving the quality of environmental education throughout our local area
school districts and also within our campus community.
The Pennsylvania State University ©2002
This page was last updated on
May 14, 2011