Global Engagement > Partnerships > Programs for Partner Institutions > GLE Project Urban Plant
There is ecological diversity within Chicago and the Sao Vicenete region of Sao Paulo state, which stems from the region's climate, evolutionary history, competitive interactions (plant-plant; plant-animal), and mutualistic interactions (i.e. pollination and fruit dispersal), among other factors. Additionally, ecological landscapes (which include humans) are partially the result of human-landscape interactions shaped by public policies, cultural views on nature, and the ways of life of each region's human populations.
This GLE assignment was an opportunity to provide students from Sao Paulo State University (UNESP) -Costal Campus and DePaul University -College of Science and Health a virtual exchange experience focused on plant ecology, morphology and classification. Groups of students exchanged information about the landscape from their respective cities, and the outcome of this GLE course was to create a bilingual calendar with two selected photos for each month, one from Brazil and other from the U.S. Each photo was accompanied by a text description of the photo's ecological and botanical relevance.
Using a calendar was an excellent opportunity as it facilitated conversation on topics that would be of cultural interest from the students. For example, Thanksgiving (Dia de ação de graças) has a name in Portuguese, but it is not widely commemorated as it is a U.S. specific holiday. Halloween is another holiday that is widely celebrated in the U.S., but not globally. Brazil is known for its carnival festivities, characterized by samba dancing and elaborate costumes, but carnival celebrations vary regionally within Brazil.
The use of ecological landscapes also provided an opening to talk about public policies surrounding environmental conversation in each region at the federal level in each country, and to discuss the drivers of changing land use in both countries.
Institution: DePaul University Discipline: Environmental Science & Studies Course name: Applied Ecology
Institution: São Paulo State University (UNESP) Discipline: Doutor em Ciências Biológicas Course name: Urban Plant Ecology and Botany: A Comparison by County and Season
DePaul UniversityChicago, IL, United States
São Paulo State University (UNESP) São Vicente, Brazil
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