Skip to main content

LIFE Academy

Most LIFE Academy classes can now be found with other classes by topic such as Art & Photography, Computer, Culinary, Fitness, Home TimeGlobal & Language, Music, Personal Finance, Wellness, Writing & Yoga.

All lifelong learning classes »

Northern Naturalist

Aquatic Insects and Water Quality (Hybrid)— 2020-09-28 through  2020-10-12$89— HybridView Details

3 Mon., Sept. 28-Oct. 12, 1-4 p.m., Livestream and at Grass River Education Center (6500 Alden Highway, Bellaire) There are some incredible insects and other invertebrates that spend much of their life in water before emerging to the land or air. Learn the natural history of these insects and how the quantity and quality of aquatic life equates to the health of a stream or body of water. In this hands-on course, join the staff of the Grass River Natural Area as you work with the tools and techniques used to measure water quality in our region by looking at our local fauna. Run chemical and physical field tests and evaluate your results to determine the levels of oxygen, turbidity, pH, temperature and nutrients. The first class will be livestreamed via Zoom, the next two meet at Grass River Natural Area near Alden/Bellaire (directions provided at the first class). This course qualifies toward the Naturalist Certificate.

  • Seats available: Approximately 9. This will be confirmed at checkout.
  • Location: Other  —  Maps
  • Course ID = 396288918
Entomology for the Naturalist (Livestream)— 2020-10-05 through  2020-10-14$59— LivestreamView Details

2 weeks, Mon. and Wed., Oct. 5-14, 2-3:30 p.m. The largest segment of the animal kingdom provides excellent fodder for the naturalist in you. Explore the world of Arthropods and gain expanded knowledge to share with others. Learn to differentiate between arthropods and other kinds of animals, and practice collection techniques. Leave with a better understanding of insect ecology and the important role each plays in the natural world. This course is required for the Naturalist Certificate.

  • Seats available: Approximately 9. This will be confirmed at checkout.
  • Location: Other  —  Maps
  • Course ID = 396288937
Course ClosedFall Mushroom Foray at Grass River (Face to Face)— 2020-10-01 through  2020-10-01$49— Face to FaceView Details

Thurs., Oct. 1, 1-4 p.m., at Grass River Education Center (6500 Alden Highway, Bellaire). Tour the woods and fields with naturalists at Grass River Natural Area to freshen up on your mushroom identification skills. On the trek you will seek, find and identify fun fall fungi. In the process, learn about the life-cycles, habitats and features of these organisms. This course qualifies toward the Naturalist Certificate and takes place at Grass River Natural Area; meet at Grass River Education Center (6500 Alden Highway, Bellaire).

  • Seats available: 0. Call to be placed on waiting list.
  • Location: Other  —  Maps
  • Course ID = 396288894
Course ClosedGlacial Erratics of Pelizzari (Face to Face)— 2020-09-25 through  2020-09-25$29— Face to FaceView Details

Fri., Sept. 25, 1-3 p.m., Pelizzari Natural Area (6852 Center Rd., TC). Love Pelizzari? Or perhaps you have heard of it but never been? Learn so much more about this special natural hiking area at the base of Old Mission Peninsula. Join instructor Jerry Sura on a field excursion of Pelizzari Natural Area to examine glacial aspects of the rolling and irregular surrounding terrain. You are encouraged to nature-journal your findings and musings as you go on a hunt for glacial erratics. Tree identification, bird and floral subjects will also be noted and documented. Hiking distance is 3 miles with hills. This course qualifies toward the Naturalist Certificate. Meets at Pelizzari Natural Area parking lot (6852 Center Rd. on Old Mission Peninsula, just north of the Unitarian Church).

  • Seats available: 0. Call to be placed on waiting list.
  • Location: Other  —  Maps
  • Course ID = 396288889
Interpretation and Environmental Education (Livestream)— 2020-11-04 through  2020-11-04$49— LivestreamView Details

Wed., Nov. 4, 1-3 p.m. You have been working toward getting your Naturalist Certificate and you are excited to share all of your new knowledge. But what is the best way to communicate all of the fantastic knowledge you have learned to various audiences? Learn the art of interpretation and environmental education. Learn interpretive techniques, research effective environmental education, and put together an action plan to turn your knowledge into impact! This course qualifies toward the Naturalist Certificate.

  • Seats available: Approximately 15. This will be confirmed at checkout.
  • Location: Other  —  Maps
  • Course ID = 396288925
Signs of River Otters and Other Elusive Animals (Face to Face)— 2020-11-24 through  2020-11-24$49— Face to FaceView Details

Tues., Nov. 24, 1-4 p.m., at Grass River Education Center (6500 Alden Highway, Bellaire). River otters are active and healthy at Grass River Natural Area. Join a naturalist to learn the natural history of river otters and how to spot signs of these elusive and fun indicators of water quality. On the trail we will look for signs of other elusive animals, like bobcat, mink or black bear. This course qualifies toward the Naturalist Certificate and takes place at Grass River Natural Area; meet at Grass River Education Center (6500 Alden Highway, Bellaire).

  • Seats available: Approximately 3. This will be confirmed at checkout.
  • Location: Other  —  Maps
  • Course ID = 396288911
Course ClosedGlacial Erratics of Pelizzari (Face to Face)— 2020-09-25 through  2020-09-25$29— Face to FaceView Details

Fri., Sept. 25, 1-3 p.m., Pelizzari Natural Area (6852 Center Rd., TC). Love Pelizzari? Or perhaps you have heard of it but never been? Learn so much more about this special natural hiking area at the base of Old Mission Peninsula. Join instructor Jerry Sura on a field excursion of Pelizzari Natural Area to examine glacial aspects of the rolling and irregular surrounding terrain. You are encouraged to nature-journal your findings and musings as you go on a hunt for glacial erratics. Tree identification, bird and floral subjects will also be noted and documented. Hiking distance is 3 miles with hills. This course qualifies toward the Naturalist Certificate. Meets at Pelizzari Natural Area parking lot (6852 Center Rd. on Old Mission Peninsula, just north of the Unitarian Church).

  • Seats available: 0. Call to be placed on waiting list.
  • Location: Other  —  Maps
  • Course ID = 396288889
Aquatic Insects and Water Quality (Hybrid)— 2020-09-28 through  2020-10-12$89— HybridView Details

3 Mon., Sept. 28-Oct. 12, 1-4 p.m., Livestream and at Grass River Education Center (6500 Alden Highway, Bellaire) There are some incredible insects and other invertebrates that spend much of their life in water before emerging to the land or air. Learn the natural history of these insects and how the quantity and quality of aquatic life equates to the health of a stream or body of water. In this hands-on course, join the staff of the Grass River Natural Area as you work with the tools and techniques used to measure water quality in our region by looking at our local fauna. Run chemical and physical field tests and evaluate your results to determine the levels of oxygen, turbidity, pH, temperature and nutrients. The first class will be livestreamed via Zoom, the next two meet at Grass River Natural Area near Alden/Bellaire (directions provided at the first class). This course qualifies toward the Naturalist Certificate.

  • Seats available: Approximately 9. This will be confirmed at checkout.
  • Location: Other  —  Maps
  • Course ID = 396288918
Course ClosedFall Mushroom Foray at Grass River (Face to Face)— 2020-10-01 through  2020-10-01$49— Face to FaceView Details

Thurs., Oct. 1, 1-4 p.m., at Grass River Education Center (6500 Alden Highway, Bellaire). Tour the woods and fields with naturalists at Grass River Natural Area to freshen up on your mushroom identification skills. On the trek you will seek, find and identify fun fall fungi. In the process, learn about the life-cycles, habitats and features of these organisms. This course qualifies toward the Naturalist Certificate and takes place at Grass River Natural Area; meet at Grass River Education Center (6500 Alden Highway, Bellaire).

  • Seats available: 0. Call to be placed on waiting list.
  • Location: Other  —  Maps
  • Course ID = 396288894
Entomology for the Naturalist (Livestream)— 2020-10-05 through  2020-10-14$59— LivestreamView Details

2 weeks, Mon. and Wed., Oct. 5-14, 2-3:30 p.m. The largest segment of the animal kingdom provides excellent fodder for the naturalist in you. Explore the world of Arthropods and gain expanded knowledge to share with others. Learn to differentiate between arthropods and other kinds of animals, and practice collection techniques. Leave with a better understanding of insect ecology and the important role each plays in the natural world. This course is required for the Naturalist Certificate.

  • Seats available: Approximately 9. This will be confirmed at checkout.
  • Location: Other  —  Maps
  • Course ID = 396288937
Interpretation and Environmental Education (Livestream)— 2020-11-04 through  2020-11-04$49— LivestreamView Details

Wed., Nov. 4, 1-3 p.m. You have been working toward getting your Naturalist Certificate and you are excited to share all of your new knowledge. But what is the best way to communicate all of the fantastic knowledge you have learned to various audiences? Learn the art of interpretation and environmental education. Learn interpretive techniques, research effective environmental education, and put together an action plan to turn your knowledge into impact! This course qualifies toward the Naturalist Certificate.

  • Seats available: Approximately 15. This will be confirmed at checkout.
  • Location: Other  —  Maps
  • Course ID = 396288925
Signs of River Otters and Other Elusive Animals (Face to Face)— 2020-11-24 through  2020-11-24$49— Face to FaceView Details

Tues., Nov. 24, 1-4 p.m., at Grass River Education Center (6500 Alden Highway, Bellaire). River otters are active and healthy at Grass River Natural Area. Join a naturalist to learn the natural history of river otters and how to spot signs of these elusive and fun indicators of water quality. On the trail we will look for signs of other elusive animals, like bobcat, mink or black bear. This course qualifies toward the Naturalist Certificate and takes place at Grass River Natural Area; meet at Grass River Education Center (6500 Alden Highway, Bellaire).

  • Seats available: Approximately 3. This will be confirmed at checkout.
  • Location: Other  —  Maps
  • Course ID = 396288911

LIFE Academy is evolving

LIFE (Learning Is ForEver) Academy at Northwestern Michigan College began as a small collection of courses inspired by those age 50 and better. In the last two decades, the popularity of these courses has grown tremendously. That success is due to thousands of eager learners who have inspired us to offer new classes on a wide variety of topics. In an effort to be more inclusive to students of all ages, we have integrated these courses into the categories they relate to so that they will be easier for everyone to access. New classes will be available on our website in early September!

Section Navigation