MUSKEGON, Mich. (WOOD) — A new immersive, hands-on course at Muskegon Community College is taking a close look at freshwater ecology.

The Aquatic Ecology course introduces students to the processes that occur in local bodies of water, including the Great Lakes. Students will attend online classes once a week. There will also be a week-long intensive field experience at the Central Michigan University biological station on Beaver Island.

“We live in the Great Lakes region. The Great Lakes are an important part of our economy, our way of life, even our identity here in Michigan. So, I think all of us as citizens should know the importance of clean water and how to take care of it, how to make decisions for the health of our aquatic ecosystems,” said Matt Cooper, instructor of life sciences at Muskegon Community College. “I think everyone should take something like this just to educate themselves in the importance of fresh water.”

He said the goal is to introduce students to all types of aquatic ecologies.

“So, water chemistry, the physics of water as well as the biology. And the students that will take the course are generally those that don’t have any … previous experience in ecology.”

The course will be available this summer, beginning in June. You can enroll and find more information on MCC’s website.