Save our Parks: Environmental Law, Policy and Politics


INSTRUCTOR: Anthony Rionda


SCHEDULE: Monday, 6:00pm-7:15pm (Online LIVE)

Course Description

Our National Parks are America’s Crown Jewels. They are worshipped by avid adventurers, campers, road-trippers and the former students of FIU Honor’s Everglades course. The aim of this course (Save our Parks) is to focus on how politics, policy, and law have shaped, saved, and at threatened our most beautiful natural legacy.

This class will have four parallel tracks. First, (1) we will learn collectively about the Organic Act, the Endangered Species Act, the Wilderness Act, etc. and the famous parks (e.g. Yellowstone, Yosemite, Glacier, Grand Canyon, Zion, Joshua Tree, Everglades), why each student focuses on (2) a lesser known park. We will also follow the importance of the (3) New Deal and how its programs both protected the parks, increased access, and advertised them to the masses (the Civilian Conservation Corps, the WPA, and the Artist Initiatives). And finally we will look at the politics of why these parks exist, how we can protect more acres while balancing their maintenance needs and farmers/ranchers/mining expectations.

We will focus on how we can protect our national parks for the next hundred years. Each student will “adopt a park” and work to do unique research on the park, work with the park on increasing its awareness among college students, and why/how we can protect it for the future.