Outdoor Learning Lab

The Northeast Iowa Community College Outdoor Learning Lab is an ecosystem reconstruction project established in 2007 on what was formerly agricultural land. Situated in Peosta, Iowa, the Outdoor Learning Lab occupies a unique ecological transition zone where the forests of the Mississippi River Valley divide savannas to the east from prairies to the west. To represent this local diversity, the Outdoor Learning Lab includes four separate seven-acre ecosystems featuring native flora and fauna: forest, savanna, prairie and wetlands

The Outdoor Learning Lab is utilized for multidisciplinary education and to facilitate enjoyment and appreciation of the outdoors. The lab is open to the general public and is available for individual or group visits.

The Outdoor Learning Lab facilitates:

  • Multidisciplinary Education
  • Research
  • Conservation
  • Sustainability
  • Historical Prospective
  • Natural and Cultural Heritage
  • Outdoor Experiences

Mission and Goals

The mission of Northeast Iowa Community College is to provide accessible, affordable, quality education and training to meet the needs of our communities. The Outdoor Learning Lab serves this mission by creating an ecosystem laboratory accessible to our students and community.

The Outdoor Learning Lab has two goals: to educate students and community on history and conservation of native ecosystems and to establish and maintain native ecosystems in a demonstrative setting.

Support the Outdoor Learning Lab

There are many ways you can support the Northeast Iowa Community College Outdoor Learning Lab. Several organizations have made gifts to build and maintain the Outdoor Learning Lab, stock the pond, provide benches for observation and establish trees and native plants.

Volunteer, internship or community service opportunities are available to those who are interested. To learn more, please contact the Outdoor Learning Lab Manager.