2015 GSA Annual Meeting in Baltimore, Maryland, USA (1-4 November 2015)

Paper No. 32-13
Presentation Time: 9:00 AM-5:30 PM


ACOSTA COLÓN, Angel A., Physics & Chemistry Department, University of Puerto Rico at Arecibo, PO Box 4010, Arecibo, PR 00614-4010 and LLERANDI-ROMÁN, Pablo A., Geology Dept and Integrated Science Program, Grand Valley State University, 118 Padnos Hall of Science, One Campus Drive, Allendale, MI 49401-9403, angel.acosta2@upr.edu

The Integrated Science and Multiuse Laboratory (ISMuL) of the University of Puerto Rico-Arecibo (UPRA) is an educational laboratory dedicated to STEM education with emphasis on the use of local geoenvironmental and cultural resources. ISMuL’s location on the Northern Karst Belt of Puerto Rico, 1 km away from the Arecibo coast (one of the oldest cities in the Americas), and less than 15 km from the Arecibo Observatory provides a rich geological, environmental, and cultural context for educational programs. Specifically, ISMuL educators and students have easy access to post Oligocene depositional and geomorphological environments, modern coastal and fluvial environments and processes, and modern karst terrains with over 10 solutional and littoral caves within a 15-km radius. Additionally, two highways (PR-10 and PR-129) allow educators and students to study the environments of formation/deposition and stratigraphy of the basement igneous rocks in the Central Block (south) to the eolianites and beach rocks of the Atlantic Ocean coast in a distance of less than 40 km. Scientists, engineers, and science educators use this context and diverse educational resources to engage K-12 students, teachers, and the public in a series of science workshops, presentations, field trips, and other formal and informal education activities throughout the academic year. In this poster, we describe and explain the curricula, objectives, and general impact of ISMuL’s teacher and student workshops, field-based education activities, and speleological research projects in the last two years. ISMuL is funded by Puerto Rico Space Grant and some of the workshops were funded by Michigan Space Grant.