Greene Field Station Outdoor Laboratory

The Greene Field Station is an open-air classroom of woodlands, streams, springs and marshes, where students and faculty study rare ecosystems, their flora and fauna, and the impact of invasive species.

Donated to Carroll by the family of Howard and Else Greene in 1969, the property includes more than 60 acres of wild wetlands in the glaciated landscape of the southern Kettle Moraine. The land is a gift, in many senses. And for generations, Carroll students and faculty have been stewards of its vital mission to research, protect, promote and educate, mining it for wisdom and seeking ways to safeguard it for future generations.

The research strengths of Carroll faculty continually drive new initiatives and experiential learning here. A sweeping restoration effort to remove buckthorn and restore open-canopy habitats, while understanding the effects of invasive species creates a cohesive, shared framework for current study. Carroll students participate in field investigations in ecology, botany, hydrology, animal behavior, climatology, and other disciplines. Diverse academic disciplines, such as Sociology, Political Science, and various forms of art all explore these phenomena through complementary lenses. In addition to opportunities for outdoor laboratory and research activities, the Greene Field Station offers work experience for students interested in hands-on management of private resource conservancy sites. This site is an important asset in the College of Arts and Sciences with roots in Biology and Environmental Science and collaborations across campus and beyond.

Learn more about the Greene Field Station, Carroll University's Environmental Science and Biology programs, and more at the links below.

North Unit

Viewed on satellite images, the 20-acre Genesee Creek Research Area is a dark green oasis, surrounded by modern subdivisions that pop up in the southern Kettle Moraine landscape like dandelions.

Here, the wisdom and foresight of farmers Howard and Else Greene, who set aside this land for conservation and research, is as clear as the cold water which gurgles up from several underground springs. The water feeds a number of ponds as well as the north branch of Genesee Creek, creating a variety of wetland ecosystems for research.

Study is immersive and nature based. The clear, cool water flowing from the many freshwater springs in this area makes it an excellent location to find aquatic organisms such as amphipods. These tiny shrimp-like animals are the subject of a number of behavioral investigations by Susan Lewis and her students.

South Unit

A few miles southwest of Carroll's campus, the urban quickly gives way to open fields and woodlands. At the 40-acre Howard T. Greene Scientific Study and Conservation Area, Carroll students monitor groundwater quality, examine the chemistry of sediment and study how best to manage invasive species, among other research.

The Conservation Area contains wetland and riverbank ecosystems, fresh springs and a rare calcareous fen. Trails and a boardwalk provide access for students and a camping platform allows nocturnal studies.

The unit includes approximately one mile of the Genesee Creek and areas both directly and indirectly affected by a dam removal and stream restoration project, creating rich material for further research on changing ecosystems.

Academic Programs

Panoramic View of campus