Readied by adventure

New general studies option to offer spring quarter at Rosario

Beginning in 2025, Walla Walla University will offer a 16-credit, general studies spring quarter at Walla Walla University’s Rosario Beach Marine Laboratory open to students from any major. The application for Spring Tide 2025 will become available during spring quarter 2024. 

Students participating in the Spring Tide program will spend a spring quarter at Rosario Beach Marine Laboratory, which is located next to Deception Pass State Park about an hour and a half north of Seattle. Studying at the oceanfront location will allow professors to include activities such as boat rides, hikes, and nature observation into their curriculum. “One thing we do extremely well at Rosario is hands-on learning,” said Kirt Onthank, associate professor of biology and Rosario Beach Marine Laboratory director. Non-traditional class schedules will also make more outdoor learning opportunities possible. 

Spring Tide will feature four carefully crafted two-week courses, each designed to utilize the unique learning environment of Rosario and to integrate with one another. “While remaining broad in subject matter, Spring Tide courses are built on a foundation of exploring how the ocean plays a crucial role in human society,” Onthank said. Class topics will include ocean and society, religion and ecology, and the art of natural history. 

Spring Tide is a program that is valuable for students pursuing any major. Each course within the Spring Tide program counts for general studies credit, making it an excellent opportunity for students to explore new disciplines, fulfill degree requirements, and learn in a setting integrated with the outdoors. 

In keeping with the theme of accessibility, the Spring Tide term is designed to be financially accessible, allowing students to apply their existing financial aid to the quarter at Rosario. Spring Tide offers a tight-knit community, time spent in a beautiful environment, a uniquely structured learning environment that have previously only been available to students taking biology courses. “Many students returning from Rosario say it was one of the most impactful experiences they had at WWU,” said Onthank. “Everyone deserves to have the chance to study at Rosario.”

Learn more about Spring Tide and check for application availability by visiting wallawalla.edu/springtide. Read a previous story about adventure learning at WWU here.

Posted May 15, 2024

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