National Park Service


Date of this Version



Weber, Samantha, and David Harmon, eds. 2008. Rethinking Protected Areas in a Changing World: Proceedings of the 2007 GWS Biennial Conference on Parks, Protected Areas, and Cultural Sites. Hancock, Michigan: The George Wright Society


U.S. Government Work


The National Park Service (NPS) initiated the Natural Resources Challenge in 1999. The Challenge resulted in the development of research learning centers (RLCs) throughout the country. The RLCs increase the effectiveness and communication of scientific research in national parks by (1) facilitating use of parks for scientific inquiry; (2) supporting sciencebased decision-making; (3) communicating current research information; and (4) promoting resource stewardship through partnerships. RLCs initiate, support, and implement a wide variety of research projects and provide opportunities for university students to work with researchers and park managers. The Great Lakes Research and Education Center initiated a university student research internship program in 2005 to provide support for researchers and managers in the Great Lakes Network parks (Figure 1). Among the network parks, eight participated in the program.