Connecting Cultures: Engaging Latinos in Science Education
Connecting Cultures Newsletter 
from Environment for the Americas
November 2009
In This Issue
Project Participants
Washington Surveys Completed
Data Analysis Continues
Calendar of Events
Project Participants

Colorado State University
National Park Service
Point Reyes Bird Observatory
New Jersey Audubon Society
Rocky Mountain Bird Observatory
Barr Lake State Park

Wendy Hanophy
Edwin Juarez
  Arizona Game & Fish Department
Kim Ramirez
  Audubon Fellow
Michael Rizo
  USDA Forest Service
Greg Stevens
  American Association of Museums
Fernando Villaba
  National Park Service

Bandelier National Monument
  New Mexico
Golden Gate Nat'l Recreation Area/Point Reyes Nat'l Seashore
Fire Island National Seashore
  New York
North Cascades National Park
New Jersey Coastal Heritage Trail Route
  New Jersey
Barr Lake State Park

Great Sand Dunes National
Park & Preserve
Big Thicket National Preserve
Big Cypress National Preserve

CO-Principal Investigator
Carol Beidleman
  National Park Service, Park Flight 
  Migratory Bird Program


Mariamar Gutiérrez

Brett Bruyere
Marcella Wells

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Environment for the Americas' newest project is a 3-year study funded by the National Science Foundation examining the barriers to participation in natural science programs by Latino/Hispanic audiences.  Using International Migratory Bird Day (IMBD) as the focus of the study, we are conducting community surveys at 6 sites across the U.S., monitoring attendance at IMBD events, and developing tools to help educators improve their outreach to this audience.  Thank you for your interest in our work!
Susan Bonfield
Susan Bonfield
Environment for the Americas
Bird treeJuan Pablo Medina at North Cascades NP

Community Surveys Completed in Washington

I live just with my daughter, I barely speak English but she barely speaks Spanish, so I really prefer programs in English so she can understand them...Anonymous Survey Respondent 

I have heard about the beer fest but never the bird fest. I know there is something about birds but I haven't been involved.
..Anonymous Survey Respondent    

Statements above were gathered during Community Surveys by
Juan Pablo Medina

The Leavenworth Bird Festival in Leavenworth, Washington is many miles from North Cascades National Park.  Because of the distance from the Park to the Leavenworth study site, we were concerned that this would be one of the most difficult project locations.  With Juan Pablo in charge, however, we had no problems acquiring 200 Community Surveys.  Not only did Juan Pablo accomplish the survey work, he also made numerous contacts within these communities that will benefit the Park's future Latino/Hispanic outreach efforts.  His time in the area culminated with a presentation to agencies, non-profit organizations, businesses, and Latino/Hispanic community members about the project. 

Special thanks for their help go to Susan Ballinger, Rhona Baron, Corky Broaddus, Sarah Ehlen, Norma Gallegos, Heather Wallis Murphy, Susan Thomas, and La Nueva Radio Station (Jose High).  They, and others, helped Juan Pablo find his way in Washington!

Analysis of Participant Surveys Begins
Results describe attendance at events

Each year, Participant Surveys are conducted at study and control sites to examine who participates in the informal science education program at each location.  This short survey examines participant ethnicity, knowledge of the park and the event, and the distance driven to the event.  For 2009, surveys have been completed at the following sites: Barr Lake State Park, CO; Great Sand Dunes NP, CO; Big Thicket NP, TX; Big Cypress NP, FL; and New Jersey Coastal Heritage Trail Route, Cape May, NJ. 

At Cape May New Jersey, the results of 62 Participant Surveys at Harbor Fest in June 2009 show that none of the respondents were Latino/Hispanic.  Though this event is held in Cape May where about 3% of the population is Latino/Hispanic, it is in close vicinity to other communities where Latinos/Hispanics represent as much as 27% of the population.  Most attendees surveyed traveled between 20-60 miles to the event and with 2-3 other people.

We continue to analyze the Participant Surveys and have also begun analyzing the Community Surveys.  Community Surveys are more in-depth, take up to 10 minutes to complete, and include questions about family history in the U.S., languages spoken, and much more.
Calendar of Events

November 2009:
Community surveys conducted near Bandelier National Monument in New Mexico.

Principal Investigator, Susan Bonfield, travels to Bandelier National Monument to meet staff and interns.

Analysis of Participation Surveys continues.

Advisory Council hosts Quarterly Conference Call.

About Environment for the Americas

Environment for the Americas, home of International Migratory Bird Day (IMBD), is a non-profit organization working to increase awareness of birds and their conservation throughout the Western Hemisphere. We provide the framework and education materials for bird festivals and events, host a directory of bird education resources, offer bird workshops for educators, and motivate people of all ages to get outdoors to learn about birds. Find out more at

Environment for the Americas
Home of International Migratory Bird Day

2840 Iliff Street
Boulder, Colorado 80305