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Photo by Luc Burnier


Live and learn in Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

Achieving our mission through:


residential programs

research that complements our learning laboratory

advocacy for outdoor learning

community engagement

Photo by Richard Reading

“Tremont not only introduced me to the wonders of the mountains and the elegance of wildlife, but also showed me how to work together. Through cooperation and hard work, we were able to overcome what seemed impossible obstacles.� - Student


Rooted in the Smokies while serving an audience drawn from around the country, Tremont Institute is proud to celebrate 49 years of transformative education.

DISCOVER YOUR CONNECTION WITH NATURE Education creates lasting positive change for people and our planet. That’s why Great Smoky Mountains Institute at Tremont works to provide transformative learning opportunities that are personal, local, and relevant. Our mission is to deliver experiential learning for youth, adults, and educators through programs that promote self-discovery, critical thinking, and effective teaching.

SCHOOL PROGRAMS We welcome schools year-round for a three to five-day stay in our Smoky Mountains classroom. Our lessons integrate standards and give students the opportunity to eat, sleep, and learn in a community setting. Read more on pages 12-14.

TEACHER WORKSHOPS Our teacher workshops train teachers for experiential learning at Tremont and include transferable skills to take home to the classroom.


16-18 Achieving Literacy in

the Classroom (STEM) - Air Quality & Climate Change

AUGUST 25-26 Teacher Escape I


15-16 Teacher Escape II 29-30 Teacher Escape III

From our home in Great Smoky Mountains National Park, our research and residential programs investigate the diversity that sustains all life, develop a sense of place, and cultivate a stewardship ethic that will influence lifelong decision-making.


Jen Jones, Ph.D., President & CEO

Kristi Parsons

It’s not only about where you go, it’s who you go with. We look forward to welcoming you in the Smokies!

JANUARY 14-21 26-28 26-29 27

Wilderness First Responder Course Wilderness First Responder Refresher Winter Photo Master Class Winter Woody Plant ID—Day Program


16-18 SANCP: Interpretation & Naturalist Skills 16-18 Achieving Science Literacy in the Classroom 24


8-13 Spring Hiking Road Scholar 27-30 Springtime in the Smokies Photography Workshop


11-13 SANCP: Birds of the Smokies 11-13 SANCP: Plants


20-22 SANCP: Aquatic Natural History 22-24 SANCP: Reptiles and Amphibians


9-14 Smoky Mountains Family Camp


2-7 Fall Hiking Road Scholar 21-23 SANCP: Southern Appalachian Ecology

(STEM) - Air Quality & Climate Change Smokies Scavenger Hunt—Day Program


7-12 Fall Hiking Road Scholar 19-22 Autumn Brilliance Photography Workshop 21-26 Sierra Club - Autumn Glory in in the Smokies 26-28 Women’s Fall Backpack





COLLEGES AND UNIVERSITIES We work closely with faculty to customize programs, tailor experiences, and meet academic requirements in various fields of study. Programs focus on conservation, natural resource management, wildlife biology, and more. Opportunities for lectures by National Park Service staff are available. Costs for 3-8 days include food, lodging, and instruction. Learn more at


11-16 11-16 11-16 25-30 25-30 25-30

Discovery Camp I Girls in Science Camp Wilderness Adventure Trek I Backcountry Ecological Expedition Discovery Camp II Wilderness Adventure Trek II


3-6 16-21 16-21 16-26 23-29

Firefly Camp Discovery Camp III Smokies Science Investigations Teen High Adventure Maryville College Great Smokies Experience

FINANCIAL AID Thanks to our generous contributors, we offer need-based financial aid through the Tremont Scholarship Fund. Visit



ADULT HIKING & BACKPACKING Road Scholar Hiking Weeks Spring and Fall April 8-13 September 2-7 October 7-12

Through daily hikes, you’ll explore the cultural and natural history of this region with its unique traditions and rich biodiversity. For pricing and registration information, visit at using program code 2263.

Sierra Club - Autumn Glory in the Smokies October 21-26

Come hike with fellow outdoor enthusiasts through the hiking club founded by John Muir in 1892. Beginner and experienced hikers are welcome. For pricing and registration information, call (415)-977-5522.

Women’s Fall Backpack October 26-28

Prices include food, lodging, and instruction. 66

GSMIT Archives

What better way to enjoy early fall than with a group of adventurous women on the trail and around the campfire. Join two experienced naturalist guides and enjoy the beauty of the Great Smoky Mountains firsthand on a three-day (two-night) beginner backpacking adventure. Our guides will provide the tools you need to succeed on this program including “how to” information, permits, food, transportation to and from the trail, and group equipment (including tents, cooking equipment, backpacks and sleeping pads), plus extensive knowledge of the Smokies ecosystem. Cost: $389.

NATURALIST CLASSES & CERTIFICATION The Southern Appalachian Naturalist Certification Program (SANCP) is a field-based program that offers “basic training” in southern Appalachian ecology and interpretive techniques. Sign up for the classes that interest you or choose a class to begin working toward certification. Our SANCP is fun and engaging enough for all audiences. The same dynamic and professional faculty that facilitate all our school and university programs teach our SANCP courses. Additional expertise by way of park staff, research partners, and top-notch educators is brought in as needed. Cost: Each course is $349 per person. Includes instruction, meals, and lodging.

SANCP Core Courses Interpretation & Naturalist Skills Stacey Whetstone

Elective Course In addition to the core courses, we periodically have bonus classes available. These electives are not required for certification. Enjoy these SANCP extras!

February 16-18

Birds Winter Woody Plant ID—Day Program January 27

Discover a number of characteristics that will help you identify trees even in the wintertime.

Reptiles & Amphibians June 22-24

Southern Appalachian Ecology

May 11-13

September 21-23



May 11-13

Aquatic Natural History

November 2-4

Sign up for eNews to be notified when elective courses or workshops are added throughout the year.

June 20-22

Cost: $64 per person. Includes a sack lunch.



WILDERNESS FIRST RESPONDER Wilderness First Responder Course January 14-21

Ask Bar abou t ou ber r firs Schola Louis t re r s spo hip f e nde o rs r

Led by instructors from Roane State Community College, the program curriculum meets the Tennessee Emergency Medical Services (EMS) and national registry standards for First Responder training. Cost: $899. Includes instruction, meals, and lodging. Wilderness First Responder Refresher January 26-28

This program satisfies the requirements for the renewal of your First Responder certification. It is also an excellent review of wilderness medical information and skills. Cost: $455. Includes instruction, meals, and lodging. Our Wilderness First Responder Courses prepare you for First Responder testing PLUS adds the intensive wilderness component.


PHOTOGRAPHY WORKSHOPS Instruction, food, and lodging included. Photography workshops at Tremont feature renowned photographers such as Will Clay, Bill Lea and Tom Vadnais guiding you through the best photo spots in the Smokies. Whether you are a serious beginner or you are ready for our masters class, you will find one-on-one assistance and helpful critiques during these energizing weekend workshops. Photo workshop prices include meals, lodging, and instruction.

Steve Zigler

Winter Masters Class

Springtime in the Smokies

Autumn Brilliance

Jan. 26-29

April 27-30

October 19-22

Cost: $661.

Cost: $668.

Visit for specifics on class emphasis, suggested skill level, and instructors.

Cost: $668.

FAMILY EVENTS Smokies Scavenger Hunt—Special Event

Firefly Camp

Family Camp

Gather your team and seek answers to questions that will test your knowledge of nature and the national park.

A one, two, or three-night adventure for parents, grandparents, and their younger children (ages 4-9). See page 10 for information.

With so many options like hikes, swim time, classes, crafts, music, and more, the hardest part will be deciding how you want to spend your week together. We’ll do the planning and the cooking. Cost: $1,807 for a family of four.

February 24

Beginning July 3

July 9-14

Family Camp activities geared toward ages 6 and up.

Zachary Webster

Gar Secrist



CHILD & PARENT (OR GRANDPARENT) ADVENTURE Firefly Camp Beginning July 3 (One, two or three nights)

Bond with your child during a one, two or three-night stay in the park! Play games that build confidence and awaken the senses. Learn about the forest and wade in a mountain stream. Sing songs around the campfire and watch the fireflies as dusk falls. Children ages 4-9. Cost: One night: $101 for child + parent. Visit for additional pricing.


June 11-16, June 25-30, & July 16-21

Explore nature while getting down and dirty with the forests, rivers, and critters that make these mountains home. Cost: $589. Ages 9–12.


if registered by February 23, 2018.* *Restrictions apply. See for more info. GSMIT Archives

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Cheyanne Yelle

WILDERNESS BACKPACKING Wilderness Adventure Trek June 11-16 June 25-30

You’ll start by learning the skills necessary for planning and enjoying a safe, successful backpacking trip. And before you know it, you’ll be climbing a mountain carrying everything you need to survive for four days and three nights. Cost: $644. Ages 13–17.

Teen High Adventure July 16-26

Spend six nights and seven days backpacking in the national park. You will be amazed at the skills and confidence you gain from this 10day adventure. Cost: $1,260. Ages 13–17.

SCIENCE Girls in Science

Backcountry Ecological Expedition

Join other intrepid girls for the adventure of your life getting up close and personal with critters, plants, and the forces that shape our natural world as you work. Cost: As low as $100. Ages 12-15.

Explore relatively undisturbed areas of the park, conducting field experiments and recording observations. You’ll explore creeks and hollows in search of the next organism new to the park or even to science! Cost: $680. Ages 13–17.

June 11-16

June 25-30

Smokies Science Investigations July 16-21

This program blends the best of the science camps into a short one-week experience. Kids will observe, explore, and investigate all while creating their own research projects. Cost: $680 Ages 13-17.

Joshua Schrader

Maryville College Great Smokies Experience For High School Students July 23-29 Tiffany Beachy

See for information.


Activities and topics range from hikes to history, ecosystems to nationalism. Students spend half of their time camping at Tremont, and the other half living on campus at Maryville College. For rising high school juniors and seniors, this once-in-a-lifetime experience offers three credit hours in environmental studies.




Learning happens best when students are fully immersed in the learning process and can investigate and interact in their environment.


WHAT WE DO Create hands-on experiences that engage teachers and students

Help students build their critical thinking

Sense of Place

developing ties to nature

skills and scientific literacy

personal and meaningful connections to the land


making new connections

Transfer best teaching practices through

cooperative teaching model

Immerse participants in the biodiversity and

beauty of Great Smoky Mountains National Park 12 12


community involvement

Haley Hathcock

Challenge teachers and students to develop

“Camp and outdoor education has been a part of my life since I was 11. Tremont staff is among the very best I’ve encountered. They are passionate, knowledgeable and extraordinary with kids. This is a difficult combination to find.” -Jamie, Teacher


• Heightened interest in learning • Greater willingness to act as stewards of the environment • Better understanding of science and the natural world

For Teachers • • • •

Gar Secrist

FINANCIAL AID Money, or lack of it, should never stand in the way of a life-changing educational experience. Let us work with you to find financial aid for your trip and fundraising ideas for your school. Call us at (865) 448-6709. Visit

Contact our youth programs manager today to learn more about bringing your school to Tremont. (865) 448-6709

Closer relationships with students and teaching team Professional development Renewed love of teaching Provide meaningful, real-world context for students to meet classroom standards

We teach elementary, middle, high school, and college. Our experiences encompass science, math, language arts, social studies, and field research.

Step outside the classroom and bring education to life. 13




Cooperative teaching is a team-teaching approach that provides opportunities to connect subjects and standards from the classroom to hands-on lessons at Tremont. When teachers team up with Tremont faculty to practice experiential education techniques, they gain confidence and are more likely to transfer those skills back to the classroom.

Achieving Science Literacy in the Classroom (STEM) - Air Quality & Climate Change

In fact research shows that, the more teachers actively participate in their trips, the greater the learning impact is on the students throughout the year. Besides, it’s fun!

February 16-18

Experiential education is a perfect way to achieve deep understanding of complex scientific concepts. Expand your ‘teacher toolkit’ to further inspire the ‘art of knowing’ within your students. Topics include: science literacy, citizen science, asking better scientific questions, conducting deeper investigations, data analysis and communicating findings. Meals, lodging, and materials included. Cost: $75 for 16 teachers. Space is limited, so register early. See

Reduce th school t e cost of your r Teacher Escape worksho ip by attending ps and c August 25-26, September 15-16, & oop teachin September 29-30 g. Ask u erative s how! This fun retreat will demystify the power of experiential learning and the Tremont cooperative teaching method. Whether you are a first-timer or a 20-year veteran, you will meet other teachers, share best practices, embrace the power of experiential learning and prepare to bring your students to Tremont. Cost: $75 per person for one weekend. TEACHERS - DON’T MISS ADDED WORKSHOPS. As you search for professional

development opportunities, be sure to check for newly-added workshops. We offer other workshops as funding is granted. Don’t forget to watch for those throughout the year!


Kristi Parsons

“I learned that if you put down electronics a whole other world opens to you.” - Rockwood student

Tremont Institute is situated about four miles from the Townsend, TN entrance of Great Smoky Mountains National Park. It is surrounded by miles of trails, a rushing river, and a half million acres of mountains and forests.

GSMIT Archives

Want to see our campus and facilities? Schedule a campus tour by calling (865) 448-6709 or check out our photos on

Caleb Carlton

We can house up to 135 people onsite and have a full kitchen staff serving three hot meals a day. Living and learning inside a national park certainly has its rewards. Feel your worries melt away as you cross the bridge over the Middle Prong to this quiet place tucked into the mountains. Step out of bed each morning and walk outdoors to a breathtaking view of Fodderstack Mountain —a perfect way to begin a day in the national park!



CITIZEN SCIENCE—public involvement in scientific research Participants and volunteers of all ages have the opportunity to contribute to scientific research conducted within the national park. Resulting data are shared with collaborating scientists and park resource managers, as well as the general public. Visit for project dates and citizen science info.

Some of our current projects include:






Citizen science research is completed with help from participants, volunteers, and research partners like: • • • • 16 16

Discover Life in America Hands on the Land Institute for Bird Populations Maryville College

• • • •

National Park Service NIMBioS National Phenology Network University of Tennessee

Photos by Caleb Scholtens, Stan Rushing and Caleb Scholtens

GET INVOLVED Citizen science happens year-round at Tremont Institute and volunteer opportunities are available. For example, consider adopting a phenology plot throughout the year or participating in our bird banding this summer. Email to get started!


Projects can be woven directly into your school programs. For example, students can take part in research monitoring salamander populations in Walker Valley or track seasonal changes through on-going phenology research.


• Contribute to research that informs REAL conservation decisions that impact the park. • Participate in ground-breaking research. • Be part of global monitoring programs.

“With citizen science, you get to stick a sticker on a butterfly, help band birds, investigate trees, and catch salamanders... all for SCIENCE!”

Tiffany Beachy

-Daniel Metcalf, 2017 Southeast Region Hartzog Youth Award winner & Tremont Citizen Science Volunteer Learn more and help out by visiting



FACULTY & STAFF teacher naturalists Lauren Anderson Elizabeth Davis Tyler Gonzales Matthew Herron Kelly Lecko Gar Secrist Chris Wandell

manager of science literacy & research Tiffany Beachy

youth programs coordinator

BOARD OF DIRECTORS manager of field programs & collegiate studies

grounds & facilities manager

office manager

youth programs manager


Julie Brown

director of finance & administration

education director

manager for innovation & assessment

president & ceo

Jeremy Lloyd

Logan Rosenberg John DiDiego

kitchen assistants Renee Bartilemeo Julie Hatcher Chelsea Jennings Sherry Presley

Emily Stein

food services manager

manager of school partnerships & teacher development

grounds & facilities

Jennie McGuigan

Charice Davis Dalton Read

president Doc Johnson

Caleb Carlton

development manager Iris Hammond

marketing and technology coordinator

Celeste Elias

Tonya Campbell

Jen Jones, Ph.D.

Elizabeth Estill

past president Billy Carroll


Hank Dye


Cathy Ackermann Jack Burgin Bill Cobble Joe Emert Daniel Green Shannon Harper Jim Haslam

Jacqueline E. Hill Chuck James Morton Massey Ed Pershing Dick Ray Bill Varner (ex officio) Chad Youngblood

Laura Beth Denton

sales associates

Gail Amatangelo Lisa Conner

“Excellent alignment to core standards. Great teaching strategies. Kids were constantly engaged.� -Principal, Yealey Elementary Caleb Carlton

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JOIN OUR TEAM We are educators, professionals, and thought leaders aiming to make a positive impact on education in the region and world through our overnight programs inside Great Smoky Mountains National Park. As one of the premiere experiential education centers in the country, we pride ourselves on our ability to train young teaching professionals through summer jobs and internships. Visit for job postings and internship opportunities.

Great Smoky Mountains Institute at Tremont and Great Smoky Mountains National Park have been selected to participate in a new science education program, Citizen Science 2.0 in National Parks. Made possible thanks to a $1 million Veverka Family Foundation donation to the National Park Foundation’s Centennial Campaign for America’s National Parks, this new program supports collaborations among select national parks, local environmental science education providers, and local middle and high schools over a three-year period. Tremont will partner with Great Smoky Mountains National Park and local schools to provide citizen science engagement for students and deliver professional development for teachers. This new teacher education program, Citizen Science 2.0: Equipping Educators to Inspire Future Environmental Stewards, will consist of a series of residential workshops at Tremont Institute and consults at local schoolyards to give teachers practice with experiential teaching and linking what they have learned to standards-based subject matter. This program is also kicking off this 2017-2018 school year at Cabrillo National Monument, Cuyahoga Valley National Park, and Rock Creek Park. The goal of the program this year is to: • establish a place-based, science-focused community of practice among national parks, schools, and education partners; • equip classroom teachers with the tools, training, and opportunity to conduct high quality, experiential science education aligned with Next Generation Science Stan dards; and • create student-centered curriculum that connects students to their local national park through hands-on scientific study of water quality and watersheds.

David Bryant



HELP SEND A CHILD TO TREMONT Children who attend our programs show greater appreciation for their surroundings and improved attitudes toward classroom learning and teamwork. Our contributors include individuals, organizations, foundations, and corporations who value our mission and want to support their community. As a non-profit organization, we depend on contributions from you. These contributions reflect your commitment to the preservation and stewardship of the park and all its wonders.




All proceeds from the store support Tremont programs


“I bet that every kid that goes to Tremont will change. The reason I know that is because I have changed.” – Student


Mail your donation to: Tremont Institute 9275 Tremont Rd., Townsend, TN 37882

Ensuring a sustainable program for all

Our hope is that no child ever misses out on a Tremont experience due to money. By contributing to our endowment fund, you are building a foundation of support for future generations.


GSMIT Archives



Planned giving involves providing for a future gift to Tremont through your financial and estate plans. Individuals of all levels can engage in strategic planned giving and you can create a lasting legacy for students at Tremont.

Please contact Iris Hammond by phone at (865)-448-6709 or by email at if you are interested in donating stock or other securities.

To learn more about donating to Tremont, visit or call (865) 448-6709 today!

SUPPORT THROUGH SPECIAL EVENTS Our annual special events are a great opportunity to have some fun getting to know Tremont Institute while also providing the support needed to bring more kids to Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Details can be found at

Scavenger Hunt - Spring -

Endowment Fundraiser - Summer -

Homecoming - Fall -

VOLUNTEER Throughout the year, our dedicated volunteers assist with a variety of activities such as event planning, friend-raising, fund-raising, citizen science and maintenance projects. If you enjoy working with others who believe in environmental education for all ages, and you want to be part of a group that is really making a difference in the lives of all who come to Tremont, contact us today to let us know how you might help us fulfill our mission. Fill out our volunteer application online at

Photos by GSMIT Archives, Laura Beth Tuttle, GSMIT Archives, Tiffany Beachy



GREAT SMOKY MOUNTAINS NATIONAL PARK As Superintendent of Great Smoky Mountains National Park, it is my honor to welcome you to some of the most rewarding experiences we offer for students of all ages at Great Smoky Mountains Institute at Tremont. I’ve had the privilege of experiencing firsthand the unique educational programs provided by Tremont. These programs at Tremont are an integral part of the park’s overall Resource Education mission, helping to weave together the many and varied natural and cultural strands of past and present. Every day National Park rangers provide a variety of educational experiences for school children and park visitors. Tremont’s residential environmental education programs expand upon these and serve to deepen the connections between the resource and their audiences. Residential programs immerse participants in the park, providing extended opportunities to experience, study, understand and appreciate the Smokies’ resources.

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We are particularly excited about Tremont’s focus on Citizen Science as we move forward together in creating the next generation of park stewards. By working hand in hand with teachers, Tremont staff is designing research programs that help us learn about the park and can be used as a tool to improve science literacy with students. At the same time, the hands-on research projects actively engage students in learning. Tremont’s dedicated staff has a personal connection to this park, and their commitment is often what inspires others to return year after year to build their own ties. A residential experience with Tremont stands to offer profound dividends to all who choose to make the investment of his or her time. Thank you for supporting these precious cultural and natural resources. Please enjoy your stay in the heart of Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Cassius M. Cash, Superintendent

COMMUNITY AND BUSINESS PARTNERS Only a handful of residential education centers around the country can call a national park home. Tremont Institute serves park patrons by providing in-depth education experiences in one of the most biologically diverse and beautiful locations. Tremont Institute depends on partnerships with community businesses and organizations like Great Smoky Mountains National Park to further our mission. Thank you to the following partners and the many others who help make the Tremont Experience possible year-round. Ace Hardware Ackermann PR Amazon Smile American Astronomical Society Americorp VISTA Arconic Foundation Association of Nature Center Administrators AT&T Aubrey’s Blount Partnership Boys & Girls Club Clayton Bradley Academy Cornerstone Foundation Covenant Health Denark Construction

DENSO Dick’s Sporting Goods Discover Life in America ERM Group Foundation First Tennessee Foundation Foothills Kiwanis Friends of the Smokies Global Intellectual Property Asset Management, PLLC Grayson Subaru Great Schools Partnership Great Smoky Mountains Association Great Smoky Mountain Outfitters Harper Auto Square Haslam Family Foundation Heinrich Family Foundation

Home Federal Bank Kroger Little River Outfitters Little River Trading Company Maryville College Metropolitan Knoxville Airport Authority Mississippi State University Mountain Commerce Bank National Park Foundation National Park Service Nature’s Gifts International Pilot & Flying J PYA See Why Consulting SmartBank Smoky Mountain Hiking Club

Speciality Investments Group Stowers Machinery Sugarlands Distilling Company Tennova Healthcare The Artistic Bean The Trust Company UBS Financial Services University Health System University of Tennessee University of Tennessee Medical Center West Hills Flats and Taps Yelp Foundation YPM

“We are proud to partner with Tremont Institute on a National Science Foundation GeoPath grant. This project is designed to help community college students transfer to four-year universities to pursue Bachelor’s degrees and careers in geoscience. This partnership benefits our students, our staff, and our community.” - Professor Larry McKay, Head, Department of Earth & Planetary Sciences, University of Tennessee 23

9275 Tremont Rd. Townsend, TN 37882





programs in addition to our school group experiences

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Tremont Institute 2018 Programs  
Tremont Institute 2018 Programs