There are many ways to know our campus—by the names of streets and buildings, by the people who study and work here, by the ideas that are inspired here. Another, often overlooked way, is by our relationships to the other-than-human species that live here. During the Campus Wild, we invite students, faculty, staff, and community members to explore campus as a natural environment where sequoias and gray squirrels, rhododendrons and chickadees, lichens, spiders, garter snakes and moss co-create the OSU ecosystem.

Campus Wild is held in the spring term and is becoming an inventory acknowledging our human encounters with, or observations about, the myriad species that surround us, so often unnoticed.

Here are collections of Campus Wild submissions:

To Participate in Campus Wild

1) Choose a creature on campus. Any entry whose focus honors the existence of a member of our campus creature community is welcome, including entries about a plant, animal, microbe, fungus, or other organisms that’s   located on the main OSU campus. (Click here for a campus map.) 

2) Choose a submission category

  • Prose: up to 250 words of fiction or non-fiction
  • Field Guide Entry: up to 250 words
  • Poetry: up to 40 lines
  • Art: one original art piece including painting, drawing, etc.
  • Photography: one photograph or short video

3) Submit your entry online by May 4. One entry per person please. Click here to submit your entry

$100 Prizes for OSU Students

Students’ Census entries will be automatically considered in a juried contest, with a $100 prize for the winning entry in each category. Entries will be evaluated based on sense of engagement and overall artistic, literary, and scientific merit.

Get Inspired

Explore the wilderness on campus by attending a Campus Wild event. Please register for events online

  • Biodiversity Captured: Join artist Andy Myer and entomologist Chris Marshall for an examination of how artists and scientists variously capture Insect biodiversity through the lenses of the Natural History Collections and the Artist Studio.  We'll start with a tour of the Oregon State Arthropod Collection, the largest research collection of insects in the Pacific Northwest where Marshall will showcase a variety of their insects to discuss how scientists use museum specimens to understand insect biodiversity and Myers will present some of his own artwork and talk about how specimens have influenced and been incorporated into his artwork.  Participants will then be given sketching paper to sketch whatever inspires them most in the collection (specimens, equipment, the space, emotions, whatever so moves them).  We will then all migrate to the OSU print studio - where under the guidance of Myers, participants will convert their sketch to a monoprint - a simple but challenging form or printmaking.  Participants will be supplied with sketching paper and supplies for making a single monoprint, but are encouraged to bring their own sketching supplies if they have them. Register online here. 

               Friday, April 10, 2:00 – 5:00 p.m. Meet at the Oregon State Arthropod Collection on the fourth floor of Cordley Hall (NW Orchard Ave and NW 27th Street)

  • Nature Journaling Through the Perspective of Birds: The Acorn Woodpeckers will present and put on a show for us. Instead of merely identifying and checking birds off on a list, we'll pay attention to what the birds are doing. We'll discuss how birds perceive the world and learn that we can infer many things we might otherwise miss by paying attention to them. By journaling (writing and/or sketching), we will get deeper into the experience and retain more from it. We'll conduct awareness exercises to sharpen our senses. Hosted by naturalists Todd Embree and Don Boucher. Register online here. 

               Friday, April 17, 3:00 -5:00 p.m. Meet at the Oregon White Oak grove (SW Washington Way and SW 30th St.)

  • Campus Ramble: A Walking Workshop for Photography and Creative Writing: Celebrate Earth Week with a Saturday morning stroll through the OSU campus on April 25th. We’ll reflect on the florescence of spring at a handful of varied sites around campus through photography and/or writing. The Ramble will cover about two miles. Participants will be strongly encouraged to unplug for a few hours and fully experience their immediate surroundings. All levels of writing and photographic experience are welcome. We’ll share our favorite images and writing from the Ramble at an evening session on campus on May 6th. Hosted by photographer Cub Kahn and naturalist Jill Sisson. Register online here. 

               Session 1:  Saturday, April 25, 9:00 a.m. to noon. Meet at The Beanery on 26th and NW Monroe

               Session 2: Wednesday, May 6, 7:00 to 8:30 p.m. Meet in room 305 of Kearney Hall (1491 SW Campus Way)

  • Science and Poetry of Soil and Garden Critters: "Soil is Life!" "No, Poetry is Life!" Double your life intensity with this free workshop with soil scientist James Cassidy and poet Charles Goodrich. We'll look into the underworld of the soil and the upper world of the gardens and write brief prose poems about the wonders all around. Register online here. 

               Monday, April 27, 3-5 p.m. Meet at the Oak Creek Center for Urban Horticulture 

  • Tree Identification and Smartphone Photography: This interactive, largely outdoor, two-hour session merges an introduction to tree identification with an introduction to iPhone photography—and how learning about one can enhance your enjoyment and knowledge of the other. Following a brief indoor overview of both subjects, we’ll head outdoors to learn to identify, enjoy, and photograph a variety of native trees and shrubs. This will be hands-on, so please bring your own phone camera. No special knowledge of plants or phone cameras is required although a little experience will speed things along. Hosted by Kat Sloma, Corvallis iPhone artist, and Ed Jensen, Dendrologist to the Stars. Register online here. 

               Friday, May 1, 3:00 – 5:00 p.m. Meet in room 101 of Peavy Hall (3100 SW Jefferson Way)