CSCC Welcomes SWAP Students From New Mexico

Friday, August 17, 2018
Student Wildlands Adventure Program (SWAP) 2018
Student Wildlands Adventure Program (SWAP) 2018
Cleveland State Community College recently welcomed students from New Mexico as part of the Student Wildlands Adventure Program (SWAP). The SWAP program is a student exchange program that allows students to gain experience in other parts of the country at little or no expense to them. 

During last year’s SWAP, students from CSCC were able to travel to New Mexico to learn about and experience first-hand the ecosystems throughout Northern Mexico, and this year, the students from New Mexico came to Tennessee where they were able to experience Tennessee’s forests and water resources.


The SWAP program originated from an idea from CSCC Associate Professor Robert Brewer and Daryl Ratajczak, former TWRA chief of Wildlife, now a wildlife biologist with the U.S. Forest Service in New Mexico. 

Mr. Ratajczak said, “This really opened up a whole world to these students from New Mexico, not just with the natural resources, which are vastly different, but also meeting and talking to people. There is just a huge diversity of people that we have here.

“We always want to make sure the host site really goes out of their way to show them something that they don’t normally see. So, coming from the southwest, we knew this visit needed to be water-based because there are so many beautiful rivers and streams that they don’t have the opportunity to see in the southwest.”

Some of the week’s activities included trips to the Hiwassee Refuge Cherokee Removal Park, Aquatic Organism Passage on Sina Branch, Cades Cove and the Catoosa Wildlife Management Area. Students were also able to snorkel in Daddy’s Creek and the Conasauga River and go rafting down the Ocoee River. 

Chris Redd, CSCC Forestry, Wildlife and Fisheries student, said, “I’ve gotten to interact with several of the New Mexico students on a personal level, outside of hiking, working and doing our daily activities. It’s been nice to talk to them about where they come from and how this is so different culturally.”

According to Mr. Brewer, programs like this set Cleveland State apart from others schools in the region. 

Mr. Brewer said, “First and second year students simply do not have opportunities like these anywhere else! This is something they might expect to do at a senior level institution at the graduate level, but they are getting this opportunity now as freshmen and sophomores.”

The first year, the SWAP program was funded by a grant from Cleveland State, but this year’s program was funded by a Youth Engagement Grant from the U.S. Forest Service. In addition, there were still other expenses that were covered by donations. 

“We collected $4,000 from donations to pay for all of the food and other expenses,” stated Mr. Ratajczak. 

All of the dinners were made from venison collected from the CSCC Wildlife Society’s research from last year.  "SWAP participants were able to enjoy venison spaghetti, meatloaf, tacos, vegetable soup and more from the meat Mr. Brewer processed," officials said.
 
For more information on the SWAP or FWF programs, contact Mr. Brewer at 423-473-2342 or by email at rbrewer@clevelandstatecc.edu. 
Students “creeking” during the SWAP visit on the Conasauga River
Students “creeking” during the SWAP visit on the Conasauga River


Chattanooga Resident Travels To D.C. To Walk In College Graduation

Local resident Erica Smith has earned her bachelor’s degree in Business Management from WGU Tennessee, and traveled to Washington, D.C., to receive her diploma at the university’s summer commencement. WGU Tennessee is an online, nonprofit university formed through a partnership between the state of Tennessee and nationally recognized Western Governors University as part of Governor ... (click for more)

Cleveland State Foundation Hosts Dinner Reception To Honor Donors

The Cleveland State Community College Foundation hosted a dinner reception on Tuesday night at the Cleveland Country Club. The purpose of the event was to express appreciation to community members who have provided financial support to Cleveland State over the past year, while also giving them opportunity to hear how their support is impacting the success of the College and students. ... (click for more)

Judge Collier Denies New Trial For Ex Pilot Travel Centers President Hazelwood; Did Not File Within 14 Days Of Verdict

Federal Judge Curtis Collier has issued a 48-page order denying a new trial for former Pilot Travel Centers president Mark Hazelwood. He said initial Hazelwood attorney Rusty Hardin of Houston, Tex., did not follow federal rules of filing notice of an appeal within 14 days of the verdict. Judge Collier also denied a request by Brad Henry, the new Hazelwood lawyer, for time ... (click for more)

Juvenile Shot On East 14th Street On Friday

A juvenile was shot Friday evening on East 14th Street. The Chattanooga Police Department responded at 6:45 p.m. to a person shot in the 2000 block of East 14th Street. Upon arrival, Officers located a male victim suffering from a gunshot wound to the abdomen. Hamilton County EMS responded to the scene and transported the victim to a local hospital. Members of the Violent ... (click for more)

Arming Teachers With Guns Will Be Too Dangerous - And Response (4)

Arming teachers with guns in the classroom, as Bill Lee proposes, would be the single most dangerous thing to happen to students in Tennessee history. Students and teachers in close proximity to loaded firearms daily? Across this state, in middle schools alone, there are probably hundreds of student/teacher conflicts a day. What if a student got hold of gun in a struggle with ... (click for more)

The Saturday Funnies

Before we get into this week’s edition of The Saturday Funnies, I want to share a fun chunk of information that we can have a lot of fun with tonight. Our pals at the website timeanddate.com were good enough to pass along the fact today marks the September Equinox. And – get this -- if you play this right, it will be just like the farmer says: “On the field of opportunity, it’s ... (click for more)