• Australia field course 2018
  • global fossil fuel emissions graph
  • Participants on a boat

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, award-winning, interdisciplinary environmental education program, whose overarching goal is to teach conservation biology and global sustainability at the front-line. To do this, CHANCE creates unique learning environments which are part of its international field courses that immerse participants, students and teachers, in real-world research and conservation efforts.

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 will address the challenges of our time such as energy, air, food, water, and climate change in their lifetimes.

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

Please consider making a tax-deductible donation to one of our CHANCE Funds. We can now accept online donations through the support of Penn State University’s secure online forms. Visit our Donate page to learn more.

Donate Today »

CHANCE Newswire

21 June 2019
Marine Oil Snow Falling in the Gulf of Mexico
Forgotten Landscapes: Bringing Back the Rich Grasslands of the Southeast
Native prairie and savanna once covered vast areas of the U.S. Southeast from Maryland to Texas, but agriculture and sprawl have left only small patches remaining. Now, a new initiative, driven by scientists and local communities, is pushing to restore these imperiled grassland habitats.
Read Yale 360 article »

21 June 2019
Marine Oil Snow Falling in the Gulf of Mexico
Marine Oil Snow is Falling in the Gulf of Mexico
Oil from the 2010 Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill continues sinking to the Gulf of Mexico’s sea floor. Now a researcher from the University of Delaware is shedding light on a phenomenon he’s calling Marine Oil Snow.
Listen to WFSU Radio »

30 May 2019
fish in net
More Fishing Vessels Chasing Fewer Fish, New Study finds
A new analysis of global fishing data has found the world's fishing fleet doubled in size over the 65-years to 2015 but for the amount of effort expended the catch fell more than 80 per cent.
Read Science article »

28 May 2019
Sumatran Rhino
Malaysia's Last Known Male Sumatran Rhino Has Died
The last known male Sumatran rhino in Malaysia has died following a months-long battle with worsening health, National Geographic reports.
Read Time article »

17 May 2019
heatmap showing Global average temperature anomalies during April 2019, when compared to 1951-1980
Earth Just Had its Second-hottest April on Record
The globe just experienced its second-warmest April since reliable instrument data began in 1880, according to NASA and the Japan Meteorological Agency.
Read Axios article »

8 May 2019
IPBES logo
IPES Global Report: Species Extinction Rate is Accelerating
According to a United Nations report, up to 1 million animal and plant species are on the verge of extinction. Nature’s current rate of decline is unparalleled, the report says, and the accelerating rate of extinctions “means grave impacts on people around the world are now likely.”
Read IPES report »

1 May 2019
cars driving over a flooded road
Pennsylvania Commits to Paris Agreement Climate Goals; State’s Plan Calls for 80 Percent Carbon Cuts by 2050
Pennsylvania joined the U.S. Climate Alliance, a bi-partisan group of two dozen states committed to goals outlined in the 2015 U.N. Paris Climate Agreement. Gov. Tom Wolf announced the move at an event in Harrisburg while releasing the state’s latest Climate Action Plan, which includes 100 ways to cut carbon emissions 80 percent by 2050.
Read NPR report »

19 April 2019
sea ice along the Northwest Passage in the Canadian Arctic Archipelago
Peru’s First Autonomous Indigenous Gov’t Strikes Back Against Deforestation
In 2009, special decrees signed by then-president Alan García opened up vast swaths of Peruvian indigenous territory to resource exploitation. Indigenous groups in the northern portion of the country responded by banding together and forming their own autonomous government in 2015 – the first of its kind in Peru – called the Wampis Nation.
Read Mongabay article »

15 April 2019
sea ice along the Northwest Passage in the Canadian Arctic Archipelago
3 Reasons We Should All Care About Biodiversity
Seismic eruptions, ice ages, continental collision and asteroid impact are thought to be some of the causes of the previous five mass extinctions. This time though, humans are to blame. Never before has a single species exerted such influence on the planet and the evolution of its inhabitants, or put its own survival in such jeopardy.
Read World Economic Forum article »

9 April 2019
sea ice along the Northwest Passage in the Canadian Arctic Archipelago
Future Arctic Won't Look Like the Arctic We Know Now
It may be the end of the Arctic as we know it. That wasn't the title of the report Key indicators of Arctic climate change: 1971-2017 published Monday in Environment Research Letters, but 47 years’ worth of data says it may not be a stretch to go there.
Read CBS News article »

9 April 2019
logging in the Amazon rain forest
Environmentalists Fear Rampant Deforestation as Brazil’s Bolsonaro Eyes New Policy
The administration of President Jair Bolsonaro is considering a dramatic change in the council that oversees Brazil’s environmental policy, replacing a broad-based panel of independent voices with a small group of political appointees.
Read The Associated Press article »

27 March 2019
elephant tusks recovered from illegal traffickers
UN Tackles Wildlife Trafficking as Illegal Trade Hits $150billion
The United Nations said it is beaming a searchlight on wildlife trafficking in Nigeria, following recent seizure of more than $8 million worth of elephant tusks and pangolin scales by Hong Kong customs from a shipping container coming from Nigeria, making it the biggest catch of its kind, by value and weight and ever in the city. Over the past twelve months, a total of 25 tons of ivory and pangolin scales were seized in Asia, which allegedly originated from Nigeria, while 13 tons of its kinds were seized in Nigeria.
Read The Guardian article »

19 March 2019
lighted crystal globe sitting on grass
Media Release: Global Biodiversity Assessment Nearing Completion
The first comprehensive overview for more than a decade of the state of knowledge about global biodiversity and the contributions of nature to people is nearing completion. The resulting Global Assessment of Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services will be considered by representatives of 130 Governments in May next year in Paris at the 7th session of the Internationals Platform for Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES). Once published, it is expected to inform policy and action on biodiversity to 2030 and beyond.
Read IPBES news release »

09 March 2019
illegal sapphire mine
Illegal sapphire mining threatens endangered lemurs
A rush for Madagascar’s gemstones is destroying remaining habitat for imperiled lemurs and other wildlife.
Read National Geographic article »

06 March 2019
water basins in the USA
Adaptation to Future Water Shortages in the United States Caused by Population Growth and Climate Change
Research on watersheds in the U.S. provide a dire outlook for the future: population growth and climate change are likely to cause “serious water shortages” within the next 55 years, says the study. As both demand and water evaporation increase, up to 96 of the 204 water basins that provide fresh water to Americans are projected to have monthly shortages by 2071.
Read Earth's Future article »

View All Newswire Features »

Field Courses

Sustainability and Conservation: Citizen Science
and Service Learning in Australia

June 24 - July 9, 2018

Our first international field course to Australia is in partnership with James Cook University and AUIP Study Abroad. This two-week field, summer program provides real-world, conservation-based research and service-learning experiences. Participants will travel to stunning national parks, forests, wildlife reserves, coastlines, and islands of North Queensland under the guidance of knowledgeable field professionals, scientists, and university faculty.

Field course website »

Photo album »

Featured Sponsor

Trans-Pacific Engineering Corporation (TPEC) logo

Trans-Pacific Engineering Corporation (TPEC) is a civil and environmental engineering firm established in 1993 and headquartered in suburban Philadelphia. TPEC is one of the leading firms in Philadelphia that is addressing the issue of storm-water management and combined sewer overflow into the Schuylkill and Delaware Rivers.

TPEC supports Penn State CHANCE because they agree that a clean and sustainable environment is essential to the future of mankind. Through innovative technologies, sustainable design and active public engagement, TPEC aims to create and maintain a cleaner, safer world.

Learn more about TPEC services and projects »

Featured Video

May 2019

Penn State University's Richard Alley explains why a few degrees Celsius matters for climate change

Ever hear that humans are warming the planet by a few degrees and think,"Yeah, so what?" Climate expert Richard Alley, of Penn State University, explains why the world is more sensitive to climate change than we like to think.

Other CHANCE featured videos »

CHANCE Fellows

13 May 2019
Kelly Watson scuba diving

CHANCE Fellow Awarded Full Fellowship to Study Coral Resilience

Kelly Watson, CHANCE 2016 Costa Rica Fellow, has been accepted into the year-and-a-half-long Marine Science Master’s program at King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST), Saudi Arabia. She was awarded an all-inclusive KAUST fellowship beginning in August, 2019. She will follow a thesis track working with Dr. Manuel Aranda, Assistant Professor of Marine Biology, using genetics to study the symbiosis between corals and algae on the Red Sea with a focus on climate change research and coral resilience. This past summer she completed a 4.5 week sailing trip with SEA Semester from Tahiti to Hawaii (3,000 nautical miles) doing oceanographic research and coral reef surveys followed by a three-week internship at KAUST learning about the Red Sea. These experiences inspired her to apply to graduate school at KAUST and to continue her research in conservation biology. Keep up the great conservation work, Kelly! The world needs you!

Our Other Fellows »

Resources For Educators

22 May 2019

NAEE logo

Climate Choices: How Should We Meet the Challenges of a Warming Planet?

Produced as part of the North American Association for Environmental Education initiative Environmental Issues Forums, which provides teachers and students with tools, training, and support to address difficult issues affecting the environment and communities, this guide for high school educators offers background information on deliberation, information about using the guide in the classroom, and material to help teachers moderate a student forum on the topic. It also includes resources for teaching climate change.

Teachers Guide »

22 May 2019

NOAA logo

NOAA Ocean and Coats Resource Collections

NOAA offers resource collections to encourage K-12 educators and students to learn more about ocean topics such as Gulf oil spills, ocean acidification, ocean currents, ocean floor features, ocean pollution, tides, and tsunamis. The collections include data-based resources using actual NOAA data, lesson plans and activities, multimedia resources, background information, and career information relating to each theme.

Access the website »

22 May 2019

US Fish and Wildlife logo

FWS Fish and Aquatic Conservation Web Page

The Fish and Wildlife Services (FWS) National Wildlife Refuge System Fish and Aquatic Conservation web page is a source for education resources for all ages on Conserving America’s Fisheries. Access lesson plans and student activity guides that support state and national standards, as well as videos, activity booklets, handouts, and education guides on conservation topics.

Visit website »

2 May 2019

Cornell Lab of Ornithology logo

Watch a Red-tailed Hawk Chick Hatch on Camera

On Monday, the first chick hatched in the seventh season of our Red-tailed Hawk live cam. Big Red (the mom) and Arthur (the dad) are feeding meals to the youngsters right now. Watch the amazing close-up highlight of the first chick hatching, one of the fuzzy chick's first meals the next morning as the second chick starts to hatch, or check in on how the third egg is doing right now.

Visit The CornellLab of Ornithology »

31 March 2019

Earth Day logo

Use Earth Day 2019 Toolkits to Protect Our Species

April 22nd marks the 49th anniversary of the first Earth Day and the Earth Day Network has designated the theme of this year's Earth Day "Protect Our Species!" You are invited to join the Earth Day 2019 campaign to respond to the threats that are affecting the survival of all species, including our own Earth Day Network has developed toolkits that contain ideas for actions and resources to help you and your communities participate in Earth Day 2019's Protect Our Species campaign. If you are ready to take the lead in educating and activating others to Protect Our Species, here are some suggestions for you:

  • Organize an Event on Earth Day
  • Host a Teach-In
  • Take Part in Climate Education Week
  • Mobilize your Campus
  • Join the "Protect Our Species" communications campaign using the #EarthDay2019 and #ProtectOurSpecies and tagging @EarthDayNetwork.

Earth Day Network Toolkits and other resources »

23 February 2019

National Center for Case Study Teaching in Science logo

Registration for Case Studies in Science Workshop from NCCSTS is Open

The National Center for Case Study Teaching in Science (NCCSTS) is pleased to announce this summer's Case Studies in Science Workshop will be held May 20-24, 2019 on the campus of the University at Buffalo, State University of New York.

The case study method is a powerful pedagogical technique for teaching science because it humanizes science and effectively illustrates scientific methodology and values. Moreover, since many of the best cases are based on contemporary science problems featured in the news, the use of cases in the classroom makes science relevant to students. This five-day workshop focuses on training science faculty (all levels) to teach with case studies, to write their own cases, and to assess their students' learning with cases. During the final two days of the workshop, participants will teach a case they developed before a live student audience.
Please note: The registration fee for the workshop is $975 and includes sessions, materials, a one-year subscription to the case study collection, and limited participant support.

Register now »

21 January 2019

CRE Banner

America's Wetlands

This EPA resource will give high school students and teachers a better understanding of the variety of wetlands, their importance, how they are threatened, and what can be done to conserve them for future generations. A Wetlands Factsheet Series provides an introduction to wetlands and offers information on how to teach about them, their economic benefits, types of wetlands, and wetland restoration, among other topics.

It also offers a comprehensive collection of wetland resources from the EPA and top universities and conservation organizations. Categories include: Activities, Teaching Guides and Materials, Education Programs, Videos, and links to additional resources.

For more information »

21 January 2019

NPR Podcast logo

NPR Launches Student Podcast Challenge

Be a part of the first-ever NPR Student Podcast Challenge. Students around the country are invited to create a podcast, then — with the help of a teacher — compete for a chance to win a grand prize and have their work appear on NPR.

Resources for teachers, including a podcasting curriculum guide are available at Teacher's Podcasting Guide.

Visit the submission guide to find suggested prompts, guidelines for submissions, and a list of questions you might have. But before you do anything, it's important to read the official rules.

Submissions will be accepted through March 31, 2019. Winners will be announced in April. The winning podcast submissions will be featured in segments on Morning Edition or All Things Considered.

For more information »

View All Educator Resources »

Resources for Students

21 June 2019
WWF logo
Careers and Internships with the WWF
Imagine waking up every morning, ready to take on important work in an organization that is changing the world. Imagine building your career while protecting the future of nature for generations to come. At WWF, employees know they are making a difference every day. WWF shares a spirit and devotion for wildlife and nature. So whether you're working at a desk in our D.C. office, attending a climate change meeting in Europe, or relocating rhinos in Nepal, you have the benefit of knowing that everything you do is part of WWF's global effort to conserve life on Earth. J Be a part of the world's leading conservation organization and do the work you've always imagined!

Visit WWF Job Board »

09 March 2019

Malaysia Promo Graphic

Registration for the International Congress for Conservation Biology is Now Open!
The 29th International Congress for Conservation Biology (ICCB 2019) will be held in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia from July 21-25, 2019. Researchers, students, agency personnel, environmental educators, practitioners, and other conservation stakeholders will join together under the thematic topic, Conservation Beyond Boundaries: Connecting Biodiversity with Communities, Government and Stakeholders.
Approaching deadline for ICCB Travel Grants:
Do you want to attend
ICCB 2019 but are worried about travel costs? Apply for a Travel Grant to help off-set your travel expenses! Applications are due online by March 15th at 11:59 p.m. US Eastern Standard Time, and winners will be announced the week of 1 April.
For more information on how to apply for a Travel Award, click here.
Early bird registration closes on 25 April, but the sooner you register the better.

Visit ICCB for more information »

24 February 2019

Environmental Career Opportunities (ECO) website banner

Let ECO Do the Job Hunting for You!

As you check out the Environmental Career Opportunities (ECO) website, you will find current environmental jobs that you can apply for at no cost. ECO's listed environmental job vacancies are from all sectors of the job-market including non-profits, corporations, professional firms, institutions, and Federal, state and local governments. Some employers use ECO as their main source of hiring. Subscribing to ECO will greatly improve your job search hopes by providing you with all the environmental job leads you need.

Visit ECO website »

28 January 2019

Woodrow Wilson Foundation logo

Woodrow Wilson Foundation Offers Two Teaching Programs

The Woodrow Wilson Foundation has two teaching programs, the Woodrow Wilson Teaching Fellowship and the Woodrow Wilson Academy of Teaching and Learning, an innovative new outcomes-based graduate school of education created in collaboration with MIT, both programs have online applications that are open until March 15.

You can become a the teacher who changes the world for hundreds of young people.

Learn more »

View All Student Resources »