Ecology and Legacy Integrated Minor

ecology and legacy banner


The local becomes global in an 18-credit hour Honors Ecology and Legacy Minor, the majority of which will be earned during an intensive 6-week summer block. This block will be strongly place-based at the University of Utah; The Great Salt Lake; Centennial Valley, Montana; and the Peninsula Valdes in Patagonia, Argentina. Students will use science, arts and the humanities to critically think about interactions between humans and their world. The program will explicitly make connections between ecosystems in the western USA and in Patagonia, Argentina thereby allowing students to understand broad patterns, similarities and differences in arid, rich, but sensitive landscapes, across cultural and political spectrums.


“What will my legacy be and how do I live my life now to better ensure my legacy comes to be?”



The Great Salt Lake, Utah. Students will explore the cultural, technological, economic, and ecological intersections occurring in their “back yard” of The Great Salt Lake. The lake and desert region is not only a local phenomenon but produces commodities that are circulated globally. The past, present and future of the lake area can be traced through indigenous and settler dwellings, from resource extraction, to military dwelling, to artistic expression, and to the journeys and meanderings of tourists and travelers.



Centennial Valley, Montana. The University was recently gifted the Taft/Nicholson Environmental Humanities Center in Centennial Valley, Montana, just west of Yellowstone. The Center abuts a National Wildlife Refuge and constitutes a living laboratory for biological field study conjoined with issues involving land management, species preservation, and historical investigation of human settlement and uses of the valley.

Whale Tale


The Peninsula Valdes, Argentina. The Peninsula is 1,400 square miles on the Atlantic Coast of Argentina; it is used by right and orca whales, sea lions, elephant seals, fur seals, penguins, and migratory shorebirds. In addition to individual animal behavior projects, we will highlight and discuss cultural intersections, economic intersections, as well as those that often exist between scientists and humanists. Finally, we will examine intersections/tensions between for-profit ecotourism companies and not-for-profit conservation organizations.

 The inaugural Ecology and Legacy collection of writings and photos

Spring 2019

  • HONOR 2109: IT Through an Ecological Lens (HF)

Summer 2019

  • HONOR 2110: IT Through an Ecological Lens (HF)
  • HONOR 2700: Comparative Ecology (SF/IR)
  • HONOR 3820: Critical Landscapes (FF)

Fall 2019

  • HONOR 3200: Writing in a Research University (CW)

How To Apply

How To Apply


Accepting applications Summer 2018 for the Spring 2019-Fall 2019 Ecology and Legacy cohort experience. Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis until January 1, 2019.

For more information contact Sarah Dyer at 801-587-0131 or