For a better experience, click the Compatibility Mode icon above to turn off Compatibility Mode, which is only for viewing older websites.

DESLA Camp at Barnegat Bay Field Station in New Jersey

Students on a boat in Barnegat Bay at Drexel's Environmental Science Leadership Academy with the lighthouse

The Drexel Environmental Science Leadership Academy at Barnegat Bay is a summer adventure and learning experience for high school students. The camp takes place at the Barnegat Bay Field Station in Waretown, New Jersey. Students will get hands-on experience in the field, learning about the history of the planet and discovering the processes that shape the landscapes around us today.

The Barnegat high school summer camp will be led by expert scientists from the Department of Biodiversity, Earth and Environmental Science (BEES) at Drexel University and the Academy of Natural Sciences. If you think you might want to pursue a degree in Environmental Science, this is the adventure for you!

The Field Station

Barnegat Bay Field Station, Waretown, NJ

Owned by the Division of Fish and Wildlife, the Barnegat Bay Field Station is situated on 194 acres that encompass a range of habitats, including a maritime forest, salt marsh, tidal streams and a freshwater pond.

Buildings at Barnegat Bay Buildings at Barnegat Bay Buildings at Barnegat Bay Dining Area at Barnegat Bay Dock at Barnegat Bay Students at breakfast in Barnegat Bay Students at breakfast in Barnegat Bay Students and cabins in Barnegat Bay

Learn more about the Barnegat Bay Field Station
See more photos

Curriculum and Schedule

Sample Schedule for the Barnegat High School Summer Camp

taking measurements in the wetlands of Barnegat Bay

Day 1

  • Arrival and Check-in at Lighthouse Center
  • Student Introductions and Orientation
  • Introduction to the Pine Barrens
  • Evening Program – Mock Town Meeting – Ecological Services in the Barnegat Bay Watershed

Day 2

  • All Day Canoe Trip in the Pine Barrens
  • Estuarine Ecology and Barnegat Bay
  • Evening Program – Night Hikes

Day 3 and 4

  • Estuarine Studies – There will be four estuarine programs - student groups will study two per day
    • Barnegat Bay Boat Trip
    • Salt Marsh Ecology
    • Estuarine Fish and Seining
    • Beach Profiling
  • Evening Program: Staff Presentation, Country Dance, Frogs and Toads of the Pine Barrens

Day 5

  • Warren Grove – Terrestrial and Aquatic Studies in the Pine Barrens
  • Tour and Introduction to Pinelands Preservation Alliance
  • Evening Program – Shorebird Conservation and Citizen Science
  • Wildlife Counts Competition

Day 6

  • Day Trip to North Brigantine Beach
  • Shorebird Count and Disturbance Study
  • Free time at the beach
  • Evening Program – Evening with Algae Invertebrates
  • Light Traps, Pitfalls and Malaise Traps, Plankton Sampling

Day 7

  • GPS Course at the Lighthouse Center and/or Maritime Forest Studies
  • Pack, Room Prep, Clean Up
  • Picnic Lunch with Parents/Families
  • Closing Program and Departure

Program Director

Ron Smith
Instructor, Department of Biodiversity, Earth & Environmental Science
Environmental Science Educator, Haddonfield High School, Haddonfield, NJ

Research Interests: Shorebird Ecology and Conservation; Amphibians of the NJ Pine Barrens; Restoration Ecology; Climate Change – Regional Effects and Education

Faculty

Jon Gelhaus, PhD

Jon Gelhaus, PhD
Professor, Department of Biodiversity, Earth & Environmental Science
Curator, Department of Entomology, Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University

Research Interests: Biodiversity, evolution and ecology of freshwater insects, particularly Diptera, in New World and Mongolia; Biodiversity of insects in New Jersey Pine Barrens


Richard Horowitz

Richard Horwitz, PhD
Associate Professor, Department of Biodiversity, Earth & Environmental Science
Senior Scientist, Fisheries Section Leader, Ruth Patrick Chair of Environmental Sciences, Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University

Research Interests: Ecology of freshwater and estuarine fishes; watershed planning, management, and restoration; conservation of rare species; invasive species; phylogeography of freshwater fishes


Richard McCourt

Richard McCourt, PhD
Professor, Department of Biodiversity, Earth & Environmental Science; Associate Curator of Botany & Director of the Center for Systematic Biology and Evolution, Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University

Research Interests: Biodiversity; evolution; ecology; and, specifically charophyte and conjugating green algae.


David Velinsky

David Velinsky, PhD
Department Head and Professor, Department of Biodiversity, Earth & Environmental Science
Vice President for Environmental Research, Director and Senior Scientist, Patrick Center for Environmental Research Section Leader, Biogeochemistry, Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University

Research Interests: Fate and transport of chemical contaminants, Stable isotope and nutrient biogeochemistry; sediment geochemistry and deposition, water quality


Elizabeth Burke Watson, PhD

Elizabeth Watson, PhD
Assistant Professor of Wetlands Science, Department of Biodiversity, Earth and Environmental Science; Wetlands Section Leader, Patrick Center for the Environment, Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University

Research Interests: Wetlands Ecology, Global Change, Ecohydrology, Paleoecology, Spatial Analyses

Staff

Frank Acker: Phycology

Paul Overbeck: Fisheries

Jordan Teisher: Botany

Roger Thomas: Operations Manager

Amanda Leslie:Administrator



Questions about DESLA at Barnegat Bay? Email us at DESLA@drexel.edu.