UM Announces Public Invited to Spring Wilderness Lectures

February 02, 2015

MISSOULA – The University of Montana Wilderness Institute will launch its spring 2015 Wilderness Issues Lecture Series, “Wild Lab: Weaving Stories Through Wilderness Research,” on Tuesday, Feb. 3. These lectures are free, open to the public and available for credit as NRSM 371 for UM students.

The lectures will begin at 7:10 p.m. in Gallagher Business Building Room 123 on the UM campus. 

The lectures will focus on the research value of wilderness, including stories of scientific investigations in wild places on the planet. The series will feature a number of speakers from UM, as well as regional authors, scientists and storytellers.

The lecture schedule follows:

  • Tuesday, Feb. 3: “Polar Bears, People and Change: Making the Abstract Tangible” by Shannon Donahue, executive director, Great Bear Foundation.

  • Tuesday, Feb. 10: “Why Protect Wildlands? The Debate Over the Value of Wilderness” by George Wuerthner, ecologist and author.

  • Tuesday, Feb. 17: “It's Bigger than Wilderness: Transformative Realizations from Doing Wilderness Science” by Alan Watson, research social scientist, Aldo Leopold Wilderness Research Institute.

  • Tuesday, March 3: “Please carry this solar panel, and other requests for free labor” by Natalie Dawson, UM Wilderness Studies professor and director of the UM Wilderness Institute.

  • Tuesday, March 10: “The Mountain Goat: An American Wilderness Icon” by Bruce Smith, science writer and wildlife biologist.

  • Tuesday, March 17: “Wilderness Research Then and Now: The Wilderness Institute’s 40th Year” by Bob Ream, Professor Emeritus and former director of the UM Wilderness Institute.

  • Tuesday, March 23: “Blackfoot River Restoration and Native Trout Recovery in the Scapegoat Wilderness” by Ron Pierce, fisheries biologist, Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks.

For more information call the Wilderness Institute at 406-243-5361, email or visit

Contact: Natalie Dawson, director, UM Wilderness Institute, 406-243-5361,