By: Belle Caney
Following the popularity of Professor Ellis’ Ecology and Biology of Birds class, Coe has decided to offer another niche course that can fulfill a Science Lab credit: BIO 136 Sciuriology.
“I’m so glad I put off all my gen-eds till senior year,” said Gracie Bostwick (‘23), “I can’t imagine a more fun class to fill a gen-ed requirement!”
Dr. Douglas Wilson, a visiting professor, will be teaching two sessions of this course next Fall.
“We will be focusing on three aspects of squirrels in this course: Ecology, Biology, and Sexuality,” said Wilson, “So you can expect a lot of coursework about how squirrels fit into our ecosystem in the Midwest, as well as how their bodies have evolved over time.”
Wilson has previously taught at UC Berkeley and the University of Florida, as well as several other institutions but has recently been hired to work on a 2-year contract at Coe starting in August. Wilson has taught Sciuriology at each college exclusively, refusing to touch any other course topic.
“I’ve spent my entire academic career studying squirrels,” said Wilson, “It’s what I got my doctorate in. Once you’ve hit the motherlode of topics, why waste your time with anything else?”
After a few visits to Coe’s campus this semester, Wilson feels confident in the upcoming term’s success.
“I take squirrels very seriously and I love that the students on Coe’s campus do too,” said Wilson. “I saw students hanging out with the squirrels, an Instagram dedicated to them, and I even heard there was a memorial for one named Smokey, who died. That proves to me that Coe College is ready for this kind of class.”
After being informed of the course’s proposed content, Tori Sandmire (‘22), raised a few questions.
“Why is a huge part of the course about squirrels’ sexuality?” asked Sandmire, “I mean, I know squirrels reproduce, but an entire third of the class is dedicated to it. Does this guy have a squirrel fetish or something?”
Wilson explained that sexuality is a vital part of his course because it’s the focus he took with his doctorate.
“I believe squirrels have a more complex gender and sexual identity than humans,” said Wilson, “and I know that’s a controversial opinion. It’s why I’ve moved institutions so much. These colleges don’t want to hear the truth, but squirrels are prepared to become the next apex predator. It’s my responsibility as an educator to let everyone know the truth.”
Class registration opens April 4th, 2022 at 7:30 AM.