Connecting Cultures: Engaging Latinos in Science Education
Connecting Cultures Newsletter 
from Environment for the Americas

April 2012
In This Issue
Update from California
Meet Fire Island National Seashore's Intern
EFTA Attends NSF Meeting
Seeking Conference Presenters
Calendar of Events
Migratory Bird Day - 2012
International Migratory Bird Day (IMBD) is the focus of the Connecting Cultures study.  In 2012, the program will share the results of the study in a celebration of diversity, IMBD's 20th Anniversary, and bird conservation.

2012 Art
Art by Rafael Lopez for EFTA
Project Participants
Colorado State University
National Park Service
Point Reyes Bird  
New Jersey Audubon
Rocky Mountain Bird
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

STUDY SITES            Bandelier National
  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


Mariamar Gutiérrez

Natasha Kerr

Marcella Wells
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Environment for the Americas (EFTA) is examining the barriers to participation in informal science education by Latino/Hispanic audiences in a 3-year project funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF). Using International Migratory Bird Day (IMBD) as the focus of the study, we have conducted community surveys at 6 sites across the U.S., monitoring attendance at IMBD events and developing tools to help educators improve their outreach. Now, we are working with event organizers to implement the recommendations of survey respondents to improve outreach to Latino/Hispanic communities. Thank you for your interest!  

Susan Bonfield  
Susan Bonfield
Environment for the Americas
 Update from California 
PRBO walk
(left to right) Intern Semiiar Chavez, children on bird walk, Melissa Wipf, PRBO Conservation Science, and intern Lesly Caballero
In our third year working at Golden Gate National Recreation Area in California, local interns are doing outreach to promote Latino participation in Muir Woods National Monument's Internatonal Migratory Bird Day (IMBD) festival. Both of the interns are college students- Semiiar Chavez attends the College of Marin and Lesly Caballero attends Santa Rosa Junior College. They will have the opportunity to learn about birds and conservation education, while promoting the Muir Woods event.  Outreach includes educational booths at events in the San Francisco Bay Area, including Día de Los Niños and several health fairs. The interns will also introduce Latino community members to bird watching and increase awareness of programs offered by Muir Woods National Monument and PRBO Conservation Science. 


The Muir Woods IMBD festival has been adapted to meet the needs of local Latino communities and the festival now includes a bilingual nature walk and a bilingual storytelling program. Program information and signs are also in English and Spanish. We wish Lesly and Semiiar the best of luck in promoting the festival! 


Thank you to our local partners at the National Park Service, WildCare, and PRBO Conservation Science for their support of this diversity outreach initiative. 
Fire Island National Seashore
Spring 2012 Intern 
Rafael Cruz López at Fire Island National Seashore, New York. 

We welcome Rafael Cruz López from Baja California Sur, Mexico! He joins EFTA and Fire Island National Seashore to promote the park's Jr. Ranger Day in the Latino community. Rafael is a marine biologist with a background in shorebirds. He has worked on several environmental education programs for adults and children in his region of Mexico, including beach clean-ups, birding workshops for tourist guides, and activities at afterschool and summer camp programs. He looks forward to applying what he learns from his community outreach experiences in New York to his work back in Mexico. Rafael also anticipates learning new techniques to protect shorebirds and teaching others these conservation skills when he returns.    
EFTA Attends NSF Meeting 


EFTA staff participated in NSFposterthe National Science Foundation's Informal Science Education (ISE) Principal Investigator Meeting. The meeting was hosted in March in Washington, D.C. by  the Center for Advancement of Informal Science Education (CAISE). This was a great opportunity to spread the word about EFTA's project and to connect with other organizations doing similar work. 

Check out this link to learn more about the meeting and to view conference posters: 

EFTA Seeks Conference Presenters
NAAEEThe North American Association for Environmental Education will host its 2012 conference in Oakland, California from October 10-13. We have been asked to submit proposals to share more information about the project and are also proposing one or more sessions that would include multiple presenters.  If you are doing diversity research or have programs that improve participation by diverse audiences and would like to participate, please contact Susan Bonfield at
Calendar of Events  
April 21, 2012 Surveys were conducted at the Jr. Ranger Day event at Fire Island National Seashore, NY to measure the impact of the Latino outreach initiative. 

May 12, 2012
Surveys will be conducted at the International Migratory Bird Day festival at Muir Woods National Monument, CA. 

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

2601 31st Street
Boulder, Colorado 80301