University of Minnesota to host statewide conference focused on civic science and invasive species management

June 1, 2022

Residents invited to support prevention and detection efforts in their communities

Three photos of people working in forest, lake, field.

Minnesotans across the state are invited to attend a one-day conference on June 28, 2022, that will feature University invasive species experts.

Attendees will learn the science behind invasive species and how to take action in their own communities. The hybrid event will feature morning keynote speakers via Zoom and afternoon expert talks in person at eight of the 10 Research and Outreach Centers (ROCs) – from the Hubachek Wilderness Research Center in Ely to the Southern Research and Outreach Center in Waseca, and every location in between.

“At their core, Minnesotans care deeply for the water and natural resources of our beautiful state,” College of Food, Agricultural, and Natural Resource Sciences (CFANS) Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Programs Greg Cuomo said. “This event aims to help residents understand what is happening to those resources and what they can do as individuals to help preserve them.”

Participants will have the option to view the morning virtual keynote sessions in person at the closest ROC near them or from anywhere of their choosing via Zoom. Once those sessions have concluded, participants can either stay at the ROC or make their way to one for in-person afternoon programming. While at a ROC in the afternoon, attendees will receive direct access to field and research sites and have an opportunity to deepen their understanding of invasive species local to their region. The latter half of the day will also provide hands-on, experiential learning that aligns with the University’s land-grant mission. Explore the full schedule

The conference will showcase U of M research focused on the prevention, detection and control of invasive species and aims to enhance the state’s civic science network and connect residents to the real impact they can make in their communities. RSVP by June 21 for this event that’s free and open to the public. Look for important site-specific information on the RSVP form. We encourage attendees to dress for the weather.

“Many of us are aware of invasive species and the threat they bring to what we love most about Minnesota – our agriculture, water and forests,” CFANS North Central Research and Outreach Center Director of Operations Vince Fritz said. “By attending this conference we hope participants will learn more about invasive species research at the U, discover how to be effective guardians in the fight against their spread and have an opportunity to join a network of volunteers who share their interests and commitment to taking action.”

In partnership with U of M Extension, the Minnesota Aquatic Invasive Species Research Center (MAISRC) and the Minnesota Invasive Terrestrial Plants and Pests Center (MITPPC), the College of Food, Agricultural and Natural Resource Sciences (CFANS) Research and Outreach Centers will host.