Special Projects


The Advancement Office endlessly works on smaller, targeted projects to help keep Coe’s campus and liberal arts experience vibrant. Maintaining a residential environment where learning can occur requires the administration to identify, analyze, and implement certain capital improvements. Simultaneously, scholarships, academic chairs, and other endowment projects are consistently promoted to permanently sustain Coe's reputation for excellence.

Wilderness Field Station

The Wilderness Field Station is a unique summer program of biological field study in the Superior National Forest in Northern Minnesota. Classes are small and personal, with no more than eight students per instructor. All courses integrate lectures and laboratory investigation with daily canoe outings.

The field station was established in 1961 and was operated until 2002 by the Associated Colleges of the Midwest (ACM). The first classes were offered during the summer of 1962 under the leadership of the late Coe Biology Professor Emeritus Robert Drexler. Following the summer programs of 2002, the ACM decided to end is management of the Wilderness Field Station. At that time Coe College assumed ownership and operation with Coe Biology Professor Dr. Harlow Hadow continuing as its director.

Located on Low Lake about five miles north of Ely, MN in Superior National Forest, the field station is set within the largest and most pristine wilderness area in the eastern United States. From this location, groups have access via canoe to the Boundary Waters Canoe Area and Ontario’s Quetico Provincial Park, in addition to the millions of acres of the Superior National Forest. The setting provides a wealth of resources for program participants: diverse habitats and species for scientific observation, innumerable subjects for painting and writing, and an immersion in the wilderness that sparks and informs philosophical considerations of the role of nature in our lives.

While dedication to providing a quality experience at the Wilderness Field Stations has remained constant, the financial burden on the program has grown over the years. We now have the opportunity to ensure the long-term viability of the field station. We are currently working to purchase a 10-acre tract of lake property currently containing buildings and site critical to Wilderness Field Station operations. In addition we are working to grow the Wilderness Field Station endowment which will ensure continued excellence in programming.

Click here to donate to the Wilderness Fund.

Learn more about the Wilderness Field Station here.

For more information on giving to Coe, contact us:

David T. Hayes, JD., LLM
Vice President for Advancement &
Professor of Business Administration & Economics
Cell: 319-329-0499
Office: 319-399-8555
Toll Free: 800-332-8404 ext. 8555
Debbie Green
Senior Development Officer &
Director of Planned Giving
Cell: 319-360-0985
Office: 319-399-8592
Toll Free: 800-332-8404 ext. 8592
Megan Ruffles
Development Officer
Cell: 319-330-6811
Office: 319-399-8612
Toll Free: 800-332-8404 ext. 8612