DFWI is a multidisciplinary environmental research center of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute dedicated to understanding the structure and function of aquatic, terrestrial and atmospheric systems. Our primary research focus is on the ecological consequences of environmental perturbations due to human activities in the Northeastern United States.
RPI Students begin the fall 2012 semester of field research and classroom study at DFWI.
Classes are underway for students enrolled in the semester of study at the Darrin Fresh Water Institute. The program, a muiltidisciplinary approach to Environmental Research is comprised of 6-10 students, who reside at DFWI for the entire semester. Classes in Freshwater Ecology and Microbiology are two of the main courses that students partake in during their time there. Both classroom instruction as well as field studies are part of the experience.
Rensselaer undergraduate biology student Nicole Nolan recently looked into the murky water of a fish tank here, checking on hundreds of zebra mussel larvae that she studied in the laboratories of the Darrin Fresh Water Institute.
Nolan was part of the first class of students to spend an entire “Semester of Study” at the Institute.
Her study of the infamous invasive species was part of a full semester of research and courses that included catching and measuring fish in some of the most inaccessible lakes in the Adirondacks, releasing young pheasants to the wild, and doing real work in the lab to provide researchers at the Institute with new information on how to control damaging invasives such as zebra mussels.