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Au Sable

Au Sable Institute

The mission of Au Sable Institute of Environmental Studies is to integrate knowledge of the environment with biblical principles in order to promote a better understanding of God and the stewardship of His Creation. This includes a persistent dedication to exemplary Christian stewardship in planning, operations, programs and outreach.


The Au Sable Institute offers courses at two locations: the Great Lakes and Puget Sound on the Pacific Rim. Each program has a slightly different focus and resources and provides a supportive Christian community that comes together in learning, field work, recreation and worship. Students and faculty meet weekly in a common integrative session engaging with experts in stewardship and service learning to better understand the natural ecosystems, current environmental degradation and its causes, the ethical nature and content of environmental problems and responsible practice. For completion of specific programs of study, Au Sable awards various certificates.

The Au Sable Institute provides college- and university-level programs worldwide in: 

  • Environmental Studies
  • Field biology
  • Stewardship ecology

Au Sable—Great Lakes
Location: the north woods country of Michigan's Lower Peninsula, surrounded on three sides by tens of thousands of acres of wild forests.
Environmental resources: numerous pristine river systems, approximately 900 lakes and ponds, 800 bogs, diverse forest ecosystems, three Great Lakes, various sand dune communities, diverse climactic and topographic features, and an abundant and diverse flora and fauna.
Areas of particular significance: Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore, Hartwick Pines and Wilderness State Parks, Lake Skegemog Wildlife Area, Grass River Natural Area, and the Jordan, Manistee, Au Sable, and Rapid rivers.

Au Sable—Pacific Rim
Location: Pacific Rim Institute, Whidbey Island in Puget Sound midpoint between Vancouver, BC and Seattle, Washington.
Environmental resources: a rare remnant glacial outwash prairie, tide pools, coastal cliffs, Orca whales and harbor seals, flocks of feeding shorebirds, abundant green invertebrates and diverse sea plants, scores of bald eagles; diverse settings from the forest to sea, from desert to rainforest, from sea level to mountain heights.
Areas of particular significance: Olympic National Park, the Ebey's Landing National Historical Reserve, North Cascades National Park, and numerous marine laboratories within Puget Sound.


The Institute maintains a program of inter-collegiate collaboration with over 50 participating colleges and universities, each of which has a voice in the academic program. Au Sable also has a graduate fellowship program to serve graduate students with a program of seminars and meetings designed to keep their understanding of Christian environmental stewardship commensurate with their work toward the Ph.D. degree in various fields of study. And it provides for its students and alumni a program of internships across the globe.


Contact Dr. Dorothy Boorse regarding cost arrangements.

  • Tuition for summer courses is charged at 1/2 the regular semester costs
  • No Gordon scholarships may be used to cover the program costs
  • Some Au Sable scholarships may be available to select students


Interested students should first contact Dr. Dorothy Boorse, then go online to the Au Sable Institute to apply and enroll.


Dr. Dorothy Boorse
Program representative
Professor of biology
P 978 867 4382

See the Au Sable Institute homepage for further details.

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