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Check out our upcoming events at Inian Islands Institute for the summer season 2018!

The Hobbit Hole in winter, peaceful and remote.

The Hobbit Hole in winter, peaceful and remote.

Homesteading Residency: Call for Applicants

Inian is hiring its first Homsteading Residents!  Living on-site year-round, residents will be responsible for maintaining this off-grid, 5-acre property and all equipment in excellent condition, participating in collection of scientific data, hosting student groups, and advancing Inian Island Institute’s mission to provide unparalleled opportunities for research and education to the next generation of environmental leaders. Preference will be given to applicants seeking to create a sustainable life for themselves in Southeast Alaska. We are looking for an ideal commitment of three years, but invite short-term summer applicants to also apply for 2018.


Inian Work Party 2017

Inian Work Party 2017

4th Annual Inian Islands Institute Volunteer Work Party

May 28 – June 3, 2018

With the purchase of the Hobbit Hole property newly complete, the air is full of possibilities for creative improvements to our sustainable and educational off-grid homestead. This year we will build a new woodshed, continue landscaping and gardening efforts, and rebuild/re-roof the out-sheds of the warehouse. We will also make plans for constructing an outdoor kitchen, student bunks, and a floating greenhouse and sauna – possible projects to be undertaken by students during this year’s courses. We can’t wait to welcome our volunteers for the long work days and the nightly celebrations that have been a cornerstone of bringing this field school to life!


Inian is a living outdoor classroom!

Inian is a living outdoor classroom!

Nueva School, 2018

June 18-29, 2018

After the success of last year’s program, the Nueva School returns again to southeast Alaska this summer. This immersive, hands-on course provides students with a deep understanding of the mechanisms that conservation and environmental sciences use to understand the world. Using Southeast Alaska as a case study for the impact of climate, students will come to understand that social and environmental challenges are complex and inextricably linked. Through this experience, students extend their understanding that ecological and sociological systems are place-specific yet globally connected. As such, students are compelled to re-examine their values and alter behaviors in order to answer the complex questions of how we are to live sustainably.


Exploration by land and sea.

Exploration by land and sea.

UAS Environmental Rhetoric Course, 2018

June 30 – July 6, 2018

Join UAS professor Dan Henry in exploring the art of persuasive arguments that lead to positive environmental change. Hosted at Inian Islands Institute, this course is available for credit through the University of Alaska Southeast.  Through this course, students will learn how to become more effective environmental leaders through the art of rhetoric.


Disconnect with the outside world, reconnect with yourself.

Disconnect with the outside world, reconnect with yourself.

Leaf to Root Yoga, Retreat 2018

July 8-15, 2018

Join Seattle-based instructor, Jessica Lindmark (Leaf to Root Yoga) and Inian Islands Institute Executive Director, Zach Brown for a week-long Wilderness and Yoga immersion filled with hiking, kayaking, humpback whales, and naturalist guides to help you understand the local ecology of the world’s largest protected ecosystem. Blending mindfulness with opportunities for awe and adventure, this course will renew your connection to the natural world both outside and within. (6 spaces available)


Students will contribute their labor to help keep Inian running smoothly.

Students will contribute their labor to help keep Inian running smoothly.

The Arete Project, Glacier Bay Session

July 17 – August 13, 2018

We are excited to welcome The Arete Project this summer to Inian Islands Institute! Arete’s programs, modeled after Deep Springs College, offer an alternative educational model defined by physical labor, academics, and self-governance. Students from diverse backgrounds learn to live and work together while undergoing vigorous course work in Environmental Humanities. Learn more about The Arete Project in their recent feature article in The New Yorker. The Glacier Bay Session will mark Arete’s first co-ed program.

Past Events

Human Ecology: Our Place in Nature

June 13 – July 5, 2017

Ten high school students and two teachers from The Harker School in San Jose, California visited the Inian Islands as the culminating experience of their summer course in Human Ecology. The students conducted a comparative study of energy, agriculture, and fisheries between coastal California and southeast Alaska.

3rd Annual Inian Islands Institute Volunteer Work Party

July 6-10, 2017

The 2017 work party took care of some much needed projects including building a composting toilet and continuing landscape and gardening efforts.  We also planned the next phase of maintenance and development, including rebuilding/re-roofing the out-sheds of the warehouse, creating an outdoor kitchen, and designing a floating greenhouse and sauna.

Nueva School to Southeast Alaska, 2017

July 17-28, 2017

With a focus on hands-on, immersion learning, this 10-day course provided students with a deep understanding of the mechanisms that conservation and environmental sciences use to understand the world. Watch the video of their story here.

In the Age of Anthropocene: Coupled Human-Natural Systems of Southeast Alaska

September 3-22, 2017
Inian was visited by a group of rising sophomore students from Stanford who participated in a three-week field course on natural resource management and sustainability. The students learned about complex social-ecological systems through the lens of forestry, fisheries, tourism and energy by engaging with community members and the local ecosystem.

Yoga Retreat with Jessica Lindmark, 2016

July 23-30, 2016
Taking our practice into the Wilderness!  For more information on future retreats, please contact Jessica Lindmark at

UAS Environmental Rhetoric Course, 2016

July 11-16, 2016
Hosted at Inian Islands Institute, this course through the University of Alaska Southeast featured professor Dan Henry teaching the art of persuasive arguments that lead to positive environmental change.  Through this course, students learned how to become more effective environmental leaders through the art of rhetoric. Indie Alaska featured Inian and this course! Watch the video here.

Teacher Expedition with Discovery Southeast

June 12-16, 2016
For the first time, Inian Islands Institute partnered with Discovery Southeast to bring a group of teachers to the Hobbit Hole to discuss the intersection of people and place, education and the natural world.  What better way to reach more students than to teach the teachers?

Volunteer Work Party

May 2-6, 2016

Our second annual Inian Islands Institute volunteer work party was even more raucous than the first!  In 2015, our 20 volunteers got a huge amount done, including extending the boardwalk out to the dock, replacing the foundation of the workshop building, expanding the garden, and emplacing a drainage system.  Check out the blog post and video.  This year, we finished up the foundation replacement, set up a large yurt for more housing, built a kayak rack to hold our new fleet, and more.  All with good food, good beer, and good friends.

October Speaking Tour

In October 2015, after a break-out summer for Inian Islands Institute, Executive Director Zach Brown headed down south for meetings and presentations all along the West Coast — Seattle, Portland, and the San Francisco Bay Area — to keep spreading the word about Inian Islands Institute!

Stanford University Sophomore College Course

September 14-17, 2015
We were hugely excited that Stanford University returned to the Inian Islands after our first wonderful course in 2013!  In the second iteration, we learned about the interactions between social and ecological systems, focusing on 4 natural resources: fisheries, forestry, energy and tourism. Read about our first Stanford course here.

Yoga Retreat with Jessica Lindmark, 2015

June 7-12, 2015
Taking our practice into the Wilderness!  For more information on future retreats, please contact Jessica Lindmark at

Volunteer Work Party

June 1-5, 2015
It was time to get our hands dirty!  Fueled by good food and friends, we extended the boardwalk, put a new foundation under the workshop building, and worked on lots of other little tasks that need doing around the property.  We also found some time for music and volleyball and beer!

Earlham College Course

May 19-23, 2015
Students from Earlham College in Indiana made their way to the Inian Islands!  Their course, entitled The Ecology and Conservation of Southeast Alaska, led by the father-and-son professor team Brent and Quinn Smith, took them on a wild adventure to Juneau, Glacier Bay, Haines, and, of course, the Inian archipelago.  During their visit, we discussed issues of sustainability and local living in the context of what they learned in the greater Southeast Alaska region.





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  1. Paula Wolfson #

    Greetings Reader, My friend Duanni Hurd and I met Zach Brown on board The Sea Lion, The National Geographic-Linblad expedition tour of the SE Inner Passage: the July 19-26th tour.This was my first trip to Alaska and Zach’s first week on board the ship. We enjoyed having Zach as a naturalist on this sojourn!((It was wonderful to be in a Zodiac raft with him, while he discussed the wildlife. As it turns out we were in the Zodiac with him in a bay near to his hometown…I have a video of him speaking about the area, the otters, the seals…And shall post it soon…)….We hope to remain in touch with Zach to find creative ways to help support his fund raising efforts. And …miracles of miracles..we reside in Palo Alto and Los Altos. Hope to see Zach in October for one of his fund-raiser-presentations!

    Bravo to all of you in your fantastic labor of love!

    How does one come visit or have a mini-retreat?

    Zach’s fellow “Sea Lion – Polar Plunge survivor” – Paula Wolfson.

    August 5, 2015

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