The Cleveland Museum of Natural History’s Future Scientists is a group of 12 high school aged students that learn about the natural sciences through field experiences and other activities. They typically meet with the Museum’s curatorial and education staff as well as local, regional and national scientists and researchers and graduate students from local universities. Visits are made to Museum-owned natural preserves, City, State and National Parks, area nature centers, zoos, and wildlife rehabilitation centers.
With support from Captain Planet Foundation the Future Scientists were able to engage in the Tremont Neighborhood Urban Ecology Project, located on 2,250-square feet in an urban recreational park called Clark Field in Tremont, Ohio. Students were introduced to diverse plant communities, they constructed a rain garden, created maps of the project site, assisted in the removal of invasive species as well as conducting a complete biotic assessment of the existing landscape throughout four seasons.
Another key goal of this project was to involve the community. It is important that this project contribute to the education, not only of the Future Scientists, but of the community and casual observer as well. By working closely with the Chair of Friends of Clark Field neighborhood group, community members were able to get involved in the planting and maintenance as well.