Ruth M. Sofield, PhD

Environmental Sciences Department, Huxley College of the Environment at WWU

Scientific Applications - Science and Management of Contaminated Sites (SMoCS)

About SMoCS

Huxley College of the Environment (Huxley) commenced a new series of courses titled the Science and Management of Contaminated sites (SMoCS) and the Science, Management and Communication of Contaminated Sites (SMOCS) in January 2012, in collaboration with Washington State Department of Ecology Toxics Cleanup Program. The SMoCS series includes several courses that build knowledge of the contaminated site cleanup process in Washington State with an emphasis on how scientific investigations are conducted, use of the technical documents associated with cleanups, the roles of different parties in cleanup decisions, and enhanced professional skills. Depending on the course, different knowledge is emphasized. The winter SMoCS courses emphasize the cleanup process, the roles of different parties in cleanup decisions, and professional skills. One of these classes (ESCI 452) is designed to give environmental studies students a general understanding of the clean-up process, while the ESCI 453 class provides a greater depth of understanding and skill develeopment with emphasis on scientific investigations, and technical documents and decisions associated with the cleanup process. The spring SMOCS courses include an environmental studies and environmental science version of the class. The spring courses utilize the knowledge and skills base from SMoCS and other Huxley College courses to support student-directed learning with group projects related to contaminated sites in Washington State.

The program draws on several strengths of Huxley and the SMoCS partners. Faculty from both the Environmental Science and Environmental Studies department at Huxley work collaboratively to synthesize important discipline specific knowledge into interdisciplinary content, with faculty-directed exercises that encourage interdisciplinary interactions between students. At the same time or in supporting courses, students focus within their discipline to obtain a depth of knowledge. The courses use a case study approach focused on one site that is being cleaned up with guidance and oversight by the Washington State Department of Ecology (Ecology) Toxics Cleanup Program. Representatives of Ecology, the site potentially liable person(s), the managing scientists, legal counsel, tribes, and the public (all as available) deliver lectures on different aspects of the site and cleanup process in the context of the Model Toxics Control Act (MTCA).

To be added to the SMoCS e-mail list, please e-mail ruth.sofield(at)wwu.edu and put "SMoCS e-mail list" in the subject heading. Other suggestions for the program, offers to contribute, or needs for interns/employees from this program can also be directed to Ruth Sofield.

SMoCS Newsletters

Issue 01, January 2012 About SMoCS, The People of SMoCS, and The Planet (Magazine)

Issue 02, June 2012 SMoCS 2012 Wrap-up including: Student Experiences, Faculty Reflections, and The Planet (Magazine) Spring Issue

Issue 03, March 2013 SMoCS 2013 Wrap-up including: The People of SMoCS, Success Stories, Student Reflections, and Coming up Next

Issue 04, July 2013 SMoCS 2013 Wrap-up including: Class Summary, Student and TA Reflections, The Planet (Magazine) Spring Issue

Issue 05, April 2014 SMoCS 2014 Wrap-up including: SMoCS III 2014, The Lab Projects, The Planet - Achievments, Twitter in the Classroom, and Student Successes

Issue 06, August 2014 About SMoCS, The People of SMoCS, and The Planet (Magazine)

SMOCS Final Projects 2013

Documentary on MTCA and Public Participation

The Skykomish Cleanup

The People Take a Stand Against Contaminon!

SMOCS Final Projects 2014

Activated Carbon: A New Remedial Technology (Documentary)

The Ominous Travels of Methyl Mercury! (Comic Book)

SMOCS Final Projects 2015

A Journey of Hazardous Waste

Starting in 2016, SMOCS Final Projects are compiled on our SMOCS website.

Page Updated 04.10.2018