Coordinators - David Kozak and Gary Gianniny
Professors - David Kozak (Anthropology) and Thomas Skurky (Psychology)
Associate Professors - Alane Brown (Psychology), Cynthia Dott (Biology), Gary Gianniny (Geosciences), Julie Korb (Biology), and Scott White (Geosciences)
Mountain Studies is a regionally focused, globally relevant interdisciplinary and experiential exploration of mountains and their role in human mythology, history, culture, and the social and natural sciences. As a type of landform, mountains have captivated the imaginations of people from around the world, influenced art, and inspired the creation of religions. Moreover, mountains are vitally important for the health of the planet and for supplying the majority of fresh water for human consumption. The Mountain Studies minor offers an exciting opportunity to study the role of mountains in human culture and natural history, and to experience firsthand the vast mountainous terrain in southwest Colorado and beyond while attending Fort Lewis College. A unique partnership between Fort Lewis College and the Mountain Studies Institute in Silverton, Colorado enhances the student’s experience available in this innovative program.
Students completing the minor may take classes in the humanities, social sciences, sciences and exercise science in order to achieve an interdisciplinary experience. Students should contact one of the coordinators, David Kozak or Gary Gianniny, in order to plan a course of study or learn the details of the program and internships. NOTE: Students electing the Mountain Studies minor must receive advising from a Mountain Studies advisor.
There are five primary components to the minor:
- Students select 12 credits from a list of existing courses (at least six credits of biology or specified geosciences offerings including labs); six credits must be upper division.
- Students complete a total of four credits of internship (MS 350). MS 350 is a variable credit course (1-4). Students can take the internship once or several times, to complete the requirement of four credits. Students will be responsible for maintaining documentation proving completion of this requirement. This documentation will be required to attain instructor permission to register for MS 496.
- Students take two credits of Physical Education (PE) classes selected from an approved list of existing courses.
- Students culminate their Mountain Studies minor with an integrative capstone course, MS 496 (2-4 credits).
- Students participate in four pre-approved Outdoor Pursuits outings. These experiences form the basis of reflective writing essays in the Mountain Studies Colloquium. The student will be responsible for maintaining documentation proving completion of this requirement. This documentation will be required to attain permission to register for MS 496.