• Australia field course 2018
  • A newly planted tree
  • Participants on a boat

Welcome to CHANCE

Today, humanity faces this reality – the environment is broken, most of which is a result of negative human impact on the health (loss of biodiversity) of our world's ecosystems.

CHANCE (Connecting Humans and Nature through Conservation Experiences) is an accredited environmental education and engaged scholarship program, whose overarching goal is to teach conservation biology and global sustainability at the frontline. To do this, CHANCE creates unique learning environments which include international field courses and online research modules that immerse its participants, students and teachers, in real-world research and conservation efforts.

The ultimate goal of CHANCE is to prepare global-minded citizens who understand the importance of restoring and protecting the biodiversity of our planet's ecosystems, and who are willing to address the challenges of our time such as energy, air, food, water, and climate change through their efforts.

Since ecosystems cross national borders, CHANCE strives to view, and to define sustainable answers for, environmental realities from a global perspective.

About CHANCE »
Online Modules. Try one today

Donate To CHANCE

Please consider making a tax-deductible donation to one of our CHANCE Funds. We can now accept online donations through the support of Penn State University’s secure online forms. Visit our Donate page to learn more.

Donate Today »

CHANCE Newswire

10 July 2018
Footprint in cement
Ditching Cement to Reduce Concrete’s Carbon Footprint
The world is becoming increasingly urban. With buildings rising rapidly into city skies, concrete has become the planet’s most-used manmade material. Sadly, it has a carbon footprint to match. Producing cement, the main ingredient in concrete, creates 5 percent of global carbon emissions. But now engineers at Rice University have made a new material that could take the place of Portland cement in concrete.
Read Anthropocene article »

06 July 2018
Dolphin jumping at sunset
Do dolphins grieve? Rethinking conservation in the Anthropocene
Its’s a fluke of historical circumstance that modern ideas about nature and the environment took shape at a time when science mostly ignored the minds of animals. That blind spot is now being filled, as contemporary ethology and comparative cognition illuminate the inner lives of others — including whales and dolphins, some of the most beloved creatures around, who are often observed attending to dead companions with something that looks like bereavement.
Read Anthropocene article »

14 June 2018

Figure 1: Cumulative Antarctic Ice Sheet mass change.
Mass balance of the Antarctic Ice Sheet from 1992 - 2017
The Antarctic Ice Sheet is an important indicator of climate change and driver of sea-level rise. Reseachers combine satellite observations of its changing volume, flow and gravitational attraction with modelling of its surface mass balance to show that it lost 2,720 ± 1,390 billion tonnes of ice between 1992 and 2017, which corresponds to an increase in mean sea level of 7.6 ± 3.9 millimetres (errors are one standard deviation).
Read Nature article »

View All Newswire Features »

Field Courses

Sustainability and Conservation: Citizen Science
and Service Learning in Australia

June 24 - July 9, 2018

Our first international field course to Australia is in partnership with James Cook University and AUIP Study Abroad. This two-week field, summer program provides real-world, conservation-based research and service-learning experiences. Participants will travel to stunning national parks, forests, wildlife reserves, coastlines, and islands of North Queensland under the guidance of knowledgeable field professionals, scientists, and university faculty.

Field course website »

Featured Sponsor

Sanofi Pasteur logo

With gratitude, CHANCE would like to recognize Sanofi Pasteur for its generous support of environmental education through the Penn State CHANCE program.

Sanofi Pasteur, the vaccines division of Sanofi, provides more than 1 billion doses of vaccine each year, making it possible to immunize more than 500 million people across the globe. A world leader in the vaccine industry, Sanofi Pasteur produces a portfolio of high quality vaccines that matches its areas of expertise and meets public health demand. The company's heritage, to create vaccines that protect life, dates back more than a century. Sanofi Pasteur is the largest company entirely dedicated to vaccines. Every day, the company invests more than EUR 1 million in research and development.

Sanofi Pasteur’s recent charitable donation to the CHANCE Field Course Fund has helped defray the cost for undergraduate students and teachers from across Pennsylvania to travel to Costa Rica and Cuba this summer to participate in the 2017 programs -- Conservation and Sustainability of the Tropical Rainforest with a Field Practicum in Costa Rica and Environmental Protection, Conservation, and the Sustainability of Cuban Ecosystems with a Field Practicum in Cuba. Assessment data (soon to be published) has shown that CHANCE field research and conservation service-oriented activities benefit our teachers and students: by enhancing their understanding of the field of conservation biology, valuing biodiversity, inciting motivation to partake in future actions as informed citizens, and much more.

Featured Video

June 2018

NASA Releases Time-Lapse Video Of Depleting Arctic Ice Cap

Other CHANCE featured videos »

CHANCE Fellows

11 May 2018
CHANCE Fellows receive undergraduate research award

CHANCE 2017 Fellows, Logan Staley and Ethan Liu, won the Gerard A. Hauser Award for Best Overall Exhibit Presentation (Grand Prize) at the 2018 Penn State Undergraduate Research Exhibition, State College, PA. Their presentation: Exploring the Economic Utilization of Invasive Species to Improve the Health of Ecosystems in Cuba, shared their summer 2017 CHANCE field research in Western Cuba. In this mixed-method field study they evaluated two of Cuba’s most notorious invasive species, the lionfish and marabou shrub, while also proposing solutions to economically utilize them to reduce their environmental impact. Both Fellows have been inspired by their CHANCE experiences. Logan, a senior Landscapes Architecture major, will pursue his interest in developing and designing eco-tourism resorts, and Ethan, a junior Microbiology major, will pursue his interest in creating and operating a sustainable vineyard. This year Ethan will serve as the teaching assistant for the CHANCE 2018 Australia program. CONGRATULATIONS!

Our Other Fellows »

Resources For Educators

30 May 2018
The Nature Institute logo

Educating for Sustainability
The Nature Institute provides various resources for educators and parents, including an Online Guide to the transformative approach to educating for sustainability.
Read the Online Guide »

29 May 2018
Small plant growing
Environmental Education Activities for Teacher Educators
These environmental education activities have been created for teacher educators by teacher educators. Through a grant from the National Science Foundation (DRL 1638420), members of Wisconsin’s higher education programs were invited to participate in two workshops that provided professional development and time to create these activities.

The teacher educators have also implemented these activities in their own courses.The resource includes 34 activities that could be used to teach a range of disciplines and licensure levels. Additionally, they are aligned with the Professional Development of Environmental Educators: Guidelines for Excellence (NAAEE, 2017).

View activities »

View All Educator Resources »

Resources For Students

15 June 2018
Smith Fellow logo

Fellowship Opportunity for Early-Career Scientists
The David H. Smith Conservation Research Fellowship Program seeks to develop future world leaders and entrepreneurs who are successful at linking conservation science and application. A Smith Fellowship provides two years of postdoctoral support for applied research in the field of conservation science and closely related fields. Application deadline is September 7, 2018.
Learn more and apply »

11 April 2018
OTS logo

Ecología Tropical y Conservación
La Selva (OTS) invites you to participate in the next course of tropical ecology and conservation 2019. This is an intensive field course, at postgraduate level, taught in Spanish. The activities are carried out in Costa Rica for seven days a week for six weeks, in biological seasons and natural reserves. You have time to register until 15 June 2018. for more information you can visit the tab page.
For more information »

View All Student Resources »