Begin Flipcause Integration Code //-->
Skip to content

Register Now for Cottonwood Crossing Summer Institute: June 18-23

This summer, the Oregon State Parks Foundation, the Oregon Parks & Recreation Department, Eastern Oregon University, the Department of Environmental Quality – NE and Greater Eastern Regional Solutions Center, and Eastern Oregon GO-STEM will put on the third week-long session of Cottonwood Crossing Summer Institute at the Cottonwood Canyon State Park.

CCSI is a week long program that provides natural resource education field studies that enable the students to experience a wide range of alternative careers, and return to their communities to build connection and interest in rural sustainability and natural resource stewardship. Educational curriculum for the week includes watershed management, restoration of riparian zones, photography, writing, astronomy and the nocturnal lives of animals.

The program supports 20-25 students from high schools from Gilliam, Sherman, Wheeler, Morrow, Wasco, Grant, Jefferson, Umatilla and Crook counties.

There is no cost to the teachers or students for attendance, and they are eligible for CE or college credit from EOU for their participation.


Faculty will include a state ODFW hydrologist, an OPRD botanist, a DEQ specialist in watershed management, an EOU specialist in Riparian zone management, and a frequently published photographer.  Other Faculty from EOU will attend as shadows, to learn about teaching methodologies in an outdoor environment.  High School teachers will also attend with their students, and will have separate seminars about outdoor education.  4 College mentors from EOU will assist in teaching and operational logistics.

Key project outcomes

  • Students will engage in project work, specializing in one project. They will perform tasks and summarize results in writing as instructed by their mentors.
  • Students will create video skills modules that explain the transferrable methodology of the project work they undertake. The modules will be used as conventional classroom resources by participating teachers.
  • Students will present their work to members of the public and agency personnel at campground talks at the end of the weeklong institute, as well as leave a digital version with the park’s visitor center.
  • CCSI will feature workshops that familiarize teachers with the project’s long-term goals as well as the tools and programmatic support that will allow them to achieve those goals.
  • Students will complete a post-institute survey for program evaluation and development.
  • Participating teachers will use the CCSI project model to create their own place-based lessons, units, or classes in the school year following the institute.
  • Participating teachers will join a professional learning community through EOU.
  • Students and teachers will receive early college or continuing education credits through Eastern Promise and Eastern Oregon University.

This is a rustic camping experience, participants sleep in tents.

To learn more or register to attend, contact