2019: Project Tiger
are invited to join a select group of Canisius students to
address the following questions:
What is the relationship
between tigers and humans in the 21st century?
And what should it be?
This will be a two-credit experiential course that will involve
The tiger -- the
magnificent predator that sits at the top of the food chain in Asia
-- can be viewed as a quintessential symbol of wildlife on earth.
To us, it embodies power and beauty. We admire the ferocity
that it displays with its
prey, and we admire the tenderness that it displays with its babies. No other species draws the
respect and admiration of people as much as it does.
At present it is
estimated that there are only three to four thousand tigers
remaining in the wild. Only three to four thousand! And because
their natural range overlaps with the geographical areas with the most dense human populations,
the challenges impacting their conservation cannot be overstated.
By contrast, it is
estimated that there are now more than ten thousand tigers held in
captivity, most of them in the hands of private
individuals. Incredibly, there are twice as many tigers held as pets by
wealthy people than there are tigers living in natural conditions!
And of course there are zoos.
Some are highly professional institutions that strive to serve as
agents of positive change. They try to keep their animals in
the best possible conditions, and they promote tiger conservation
via extensive educational programs. But other zoos quite
honestly exploit tigers by taking advantage of people's strong
desire to be close to this species. Some even go
so far as drugging their animals so that paying customers can pose
But there is more to this story. There is now a nearly universal
interest in tiger conservation across the globe. People
everywhere pay attention to news about tigers, and are interested in
their conservation and welfare.
And that brings us to the issues that CAC will tackle this year.
In January 2019, the CAC
team will travel to India in order to visit national parks that
strive to maintain healthy populations of wild tigers. There,
the students will also witness first hand the pressures that impact these
parks from the growing human pollutions. Following
that, the project will include short field trips within the US to
explore the status of captive tigers. Through this process,
the students will work with Dr Noonan to produce a
video program that will explore
the status of tigers
in the wild
the efforts by zoos
to preserve tigers
the conditions of
tigers held in private hands
the efforts by
"sanctuaries" to cope with surplus tigers
Throughout this time, six things will
be expected of the
First and foremost,
the students will play roles in a film that will convey
the complex issues related to tiger conservation and human-tiger
interactions. The studentsí own struggle with the issues,
and their first-hand experiences, will be the story of the film.
The students will participate in the group study of tiger
ecosystems in India. This will involve two weeks of travel
(from 28 December 2018 to 13 January 2019).
The students will
participate in five separate day trips to tiger facilities within
the US. These trips will occur over weekends during the
Spring 19 semester (exact dates to be determined).
student will be expected to master the complex issues
involved in this topic. This will involve academic assignments and
exams that will take place during
once-weekly meetings throughout the Spring-19 semester.
The students will collectively advocate for a progressive approach to the
issue via a significant position paper that will be due at
the end of the semester.
addition, each student will make a
presentation on this topic to a live audience of school
Each on-screen participant will contribute $2000. The CAC program will
cover the additional costs.
payments will include both the India travel (including the costs of
visas), and the subsequent day trips.
In addition to the $2000 payment described above, each student will be
expected to also cover any expenditures associated with obtaining
passport, any elective immunizations, and any necessary clothing.
Application to participate in Project Tiger is open to students of
any academic year, and of any major.
total of six students will be selected to serve with Dr Noonan as the
characters in the Project Tiger film. When considering applicants, the following traits will be
an ability to speak well on camera
personality that will animate the video content
a serious commitment to wildlife conservation
a record of academic excellence
excellent writing skills
The selection process will involve:
Written application. This will convey the studentís background,
writing skills, and motivation. It will also be an opportunity
to show an understanding of how to engage others on the topic of
Live tryout. This will give each student a chance to show
his/her ability to speak effectively on-camera, and to function
in a dynamic group setting.
To apply to be a member
of the Project Tiger team, complete the following
application no later than 28 Sep 2018:
personal note to students
from DR NOONAN
Please do not be intimidated by the selection process. Rather, if
this project sounds like it was meant for you, then please be
inspired to step up to the challenge.
When considering applicants, I will not care if you are a freshman or a
senior, whether you are tall or short, or about anything else other
than whether you want to work on this project as much as I do. You
do not have to perfect. You just have to show that you are
enthusiastic and thoroughly committed to making a difference in the
As additional background, an overview of the CAC program can be obtained at the following two
addition to the six CAC students described above, two additional
students will be selected to serve as the behind-the-camera team.
With Dr Noonan they will be the videographers and editors of the
film. The cost for each video team member will be $1000.
The CAC program will cover the other travel costs. (Because
these positions will require intent focus on the video production,
these two students will not be involved with the 2-credit academic
content of this project.)
When considering applicants, the following traits will
past experience in
with videography (camera skills)
proficiency with the
process of digital video editing
The selection process will involve:
Portfolio Review: This will involve a review of the studentís
past video experience and productions.
In-person Interview. This will be an opportunity to
discuss project goals and the ways to contribute.
Live tryout. This will give each student a chance to
his/her ability to work with video cameras, and/or with video
apply to be a member of the Project Tiger Video Team, please
assemble a resume that emphasizes your video-related skills and
experiences. Send this to Dr Noonan as a PDF file no later
than 28 Sep 2018. Then make an appointment with Dr Noonan for
an in-person interview.