Out of the classroom learning

One quick news item to start us off today: Residence Life and Housing sent this message to continuing students (’22s-’24s) about the housing selection process. There is a great video in the message that should help your Deacs understand the mechanics of housing selection. (As a reminder, incoming ’25 students and transfer students have their housing assigned to them later in July).

When you think of “college,” you often think of classrooms and labs. And it’s true that most of the time, that’s where your Deacs are learning. But one of the distinctives of Wake Forest is that our undergraduate students also have the opportunity for some pretty amazing out of the classroom experiences.

Whether that is as part of an individual research project, a class, or a special trip, students across a variety of academic subjects have had the chance to do archeological digs, birdwatching, beekeeping, marine biology trips, learning to take samples underwater, working the 2016 presidential campaign (everything from knocking on doors and canvassing for candidates to visiting CNN), studying local art (such as the Persian Card Room in Graylyn, which is one of my absolute favorites), and much more.

Here is a sampling of some of the exceptional out of the classroom experiences our students have had in recent years. If your Deacs have a chance to participate in field research, trips, or other action learning projects, encourage them to take advantage of those opportunities.

WFU biology field trip to the Duke marine lab in Beaufort, NC, November, 2001. (WFU/Ken Bennett) Wake Forest University anthropology professor Eric Jones, with beard, works with undergraduates in a field site along the Yadkin River in Surry County, NC, on Tuesday, June 14, 2011. Seniors Sara Frantz, Tom Morrison (in white shirt), and junior Andrew Wardner, all anthropology majors, are spending the summer exploring settlements from the Late Woodland era (AD 1000-1600.) Wake Forest biology professor Susan Fahrbach works with junior Andrea Beck ('13) and beekeeper Erika Vandeman at one of their field research sites in Winston-Salem, NC, on Wednesday, June 15, 2011. Fahrbach studies the neurology and behavior of honeybees. Wake Forest anthropology professor Eric Jones takes his North American prehistory class to dig at a research site on the Yadkin River on Saturday, November 23, 2013. Kimberly Paiz ('14) and Pierce Wright ('15) sift dirt while Leah Schenkel ('14) checks her work with Jones. Wake Forest anthropology professor Eric Jones takes his North American prehistory class to dig at a research site on the Yadkin River on Saturday, November 23, 2013. Wake Forest biology students learn how to perform underwater sampling and surveying in the pool in Reynolds Gym on Tuesday, March 4, 2014, before a class trip to Belize. The students take careful notes of their findings on waterproof paper. Wake Forest students from the Wake the Vote project visit media studios in New York City on Sunday, February 7, 2016. Melissa Harris Perry visits the CNN studios with the class. Wake Forest students in the Wake the Vote project volunteer on presidential campaigns in New Hampshire on Tuesday, February 9, 2016. Students Katherine Cassidy ('19) and Alex Fulling ('18) canvas for Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton in Manchester. Wake Forest history professor Charles Wilkins and junior history major Reid Simpson ('20) work on a research project to document the Persian Room at Graylyn conference center on the Wake Forest campus, on Monday, November 12, 2018. Wake Forest biology professor Dave Anderson takes students in his biology of birds class to the local wastewater treatment plant for their first field birding trip, on Wednesday, March 6, 2019. Wake Forest students travel to Florida to study birds in biology professor Dave Andersons class over spring break 2020. The second half of the BIO 255 class depart for an airboat tour on Lake Kissimmee on Monday, March 9, 2020. Wake Forest students travel to Florida to study birds in biology professor Dave Andersons class over spring break 2020. The Bio 255 class looks at birds at Sebastian Inlet State Park on Wednesday, March 11, 2020.

— by Betsy Chapman, Ph.D. (’92, MA ’94)

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