The Environmental Science & Technology Institute

Want to learn about our natural surroundings to help the planet?

A high school class can teach you about science, but GIV makes it possible for teens to work with teachers who are the best in their fields, while gaining hands-on knowledge working in state-of-the-art labs. These opportunities to truly experience science give students a chance to apply their interests in real-world situations, and the occasion to work together as a team for a common good.”

Summer 2024 dates and information coming soon!

About the Environmental Science &Technology Institute...

Ready to explore our natural world?

This summer, investigate what’s in our water and soil at the GIV Environmental Science & Technology Institute! You’ll collect environmental data from your own community and use UVM’s state-of-the-art facilities to analyze, interpret, and learn more about what is happening with your environment on a micro and macro level. What will you find out? What solutions will you propose?

For information regarding tuition, please click here.

Summer 2024 dates and information coming soon!

College credit available!

Environmental Science Student with Microscope 2023
Environmental Science students on Research Study Boat

At This Institute You Will...

  • Explore local environmental issues, gathering lake, stream and soil data.
  • Combine outdoor field research with computing and laboratory technology.
  • Evaluate the distribution of pollutants in our air, water, and soil.
  • Learn the scientific method, collect environmental data, and present your work.
  • Identify academic and professional career paths for emerging scientists.
  • Make lifelong friends with peers who share your interests.
  • Have the time of your life!

Experience the vibe at the Environmental Science & Technology Institute!

Check out photos from the Summer 2023 session below…

View the full album and download photos by clicking here.

Note: This album is arranged in chronological order as events took place throughout the Institute.

Video recap from the Institute coming soon!

Earn College Credit At This Institute!

Students may enroll for UVM college credit for this Institute using one of their Dual Enrollment vouchers for free tuition, or just pay the UVM tuition outright, if Dual Enrollment is not an option.

Please note that colleges charge extra tuition and fees on top of GIV tuition for granting credits, but students can utilize a Dual Enrollment voucher to fully cover the UVM tuition. The Dual Enrollment program guarantees free college tuition for most rising VT juniors and seniors, but does not cover an additional $40 comprehensive fee at UVM. To learn more about Dual Enrollment, click here.

Especially helpful documents are..

Dual Enrollment funds, by law, may not be used to pay GIV tuition, which is due separately.

If Dual Enrollment is not an option, students may also opt to enroll for college credit using UVM’s 50% tuition rate for academically advanced students. Families are responsible for the $40 comprehensive fee (plus the UVM 50% tuition) to obtain college credit. This tuition option is open to all rising sophomores, juniors, and seniors.

Applicants must be accepted to the Environmental Science & Technology Institute before enrolling at UVM.  Pre-registration for the 2023 UVM course will be available after April 15th, 2023 for all students (Dual Enrollment and 50% Tuition). 

Please pre-register for: Environmental Sciences: Governor’s Institute on EST, ENSC 095 Z1 (CRN: 61627), 4 Credit hours before your high school year ends.

Need more help enrolling at UVM? Contact the UVM Continuing and Distance Education team at [email protected] or 802-656-2085.

Environmental Science Students at UVM 2023

Attending this Institute can earn you credit and proficiencies!

How To Get High School Credit

We encourage all students who participate in an Institute to use the experience to earn high school credit.

Awarding high school credit is at the discretion of the student’s sending school, so we recommend students make a plan with their high school guidance counselor before attending GIV to earn their credit.

Each school has unique requirements around proficiencies, credits, and PLPs, so there are multiple pathways to awarding credit based on your school's system of assessments.

However, we recommend that high schools award credit by having students produce one or more of the following...
- A presentation to reflect on the overall experience to present for counselors and/or teachers in the fall after their participation.
- A learning journal for submission about areas of learning, activities, reflections.
- Work examples to share with sending school teachers (physical or digital products, writing, videos of presentations, learning journal, etc.) to be reviewed and assessed.

Please reach out to us at [email protected] if we can directly help or support you or your school in determining credit opportunities for your experience at GIV.

Curriculum Format

Online introduction from home followed by 1-week intensive on campus
Introduction activities in student home communities, collecting samples for analysis
Students follow curriculum of varied workshops and presentations
Students work independently and in teams on analysis and data projects
Field trips to area centers of environmental work and study
UVM Lake Champlain Research boat for water studies
Dormitories and roommates
12:1 student-to-staff ratio

Curriculum Topics

Energy and renewable sources
Water systems and quality
Drone and survey technology
Environmental economics
Agriculture and local industry
and more!

Hours and Opportunities

70+ hours of environmental science training
Connections with professionals working in environmental fields and college professors
New understandings about local environmental impacts

High School Credit Recommendations

Equivalent to one semester of high school credit in 1 or more of the following:

Science - Physical Sciences
Science - Life Sciences
Science - Engineering and Technology

VT Proficiency Indicators

This Institute’s curriculum has been aligned with the following Vermont proficiency-based graduation requirements at the high school level.

- Physical Sciences: 1a, 1b, 1c, 1d, 1e, 1j, 2a, 2b, 2c, 2d, 2e, 2f, 2g
- Life Sciences: 3c, 3d, 3e, 3f, 3g, 4a, 4b, 4c, 4d, 4d, 4e
- Earth & Space Sciences: 7b, 7c, 7d, 7e, 7f, 7g, 7i, 7j
- Engineering Technology & Applied Science: 8a, 8b, 8c, 8d, 8e, 8f, 8g, 8h, 8i, 8j

Transferable Skills
- Communication: 1a, 1b, 1c, 1d, 1e, 1f, 1g
- Self-Direction: 2a, 2b, 2c, 2d, 2e, 2f, 2g, 2h, 2i
- Problem Solving: 3a, 3b, 3c, 3d, 3e, 3f, 3g, 3h
- Citizenship: 4a, 4b, 4c, 4d, 4e, 4f
- Informed Thinking: 5a, 5b, 5f

So how does it all work?

Every day is a unique experience filled with expert-led instruction, hands-on investigation, field trips, and immersive learning. We work to build a community around our experiences and share in our passion for everything we explore.

**The schedule is slightly different each year and announced when you arrive!

GIV’s supportive Institute structure is endlessly enriching, empowering, and engaging.

An Example of a Day at the Environmental Science and Technology Institute

Morning: Morning Workshops
Late Morning: Sample and Data Analysis
Afternoon: Field Trip
Late Afternoon: Guest Speaker/Presentations
Evening: Nightly Social Activity

Environmental Sciences & Technology Faculty

Christine Massey is a Researcher in the Geology Department at the University of Vermont and holds a BA and MS in Geology. She works at the Perkins Museum of Geology on grant-funded initiatives and facilitates science education for students and teachers in Vermont. Her projects include: 1) The Landscape Change Program where she helps coordinate a large historic photograph collection of Vermont landscapes, helps understand how students learn using images, and works with K-12 teachers to develop curriculum using images, 2) Directing the Governor’s Institute in Environmental Science and Technology for capable and motivated Vermont high school students, 3) Directing the Perkins Museum Environmental Science Day Camp for children in grades 1-7, and 4) Coordinating the creation of educational vignettes for a new textbook in Geomorphology.  Christine lives in Burlington, VT with her husband and two daughters. She enjoys cross-country skiing and baking pies.

Paul Bierman is a professor of Geology at UVM, where he engages people of all ages in the study of how Earth’s surface works. For almost 20 years, he’s done research in Vermont and many other places around the world including far northern Canada, Greenland, central Australia, southern Africa, the Middle East, and the American southwest. His latest project uses historic imagery to document the impact of people on Vermont landscapes and the impact of landscape events on Vermont people and societies.  Paul earned his BA from Williams College in 1985 and his MS and PhD from the University of Washington, the latter in 1993. He has been at UVM ever since, with appointments in Geology and the School of Natural Resources.  In 2005, Paul was awarded one of the National Science Foundation’s highest honors: the Director’s award for Distinguished Teaching Scholars. This award now supports the Vermont Landscape Change Program, a digital archive of historic imagery.

If you are wanting to make a positive impact on the natural environment and the world, then this is the Institute for you!

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