Jean McLaughlin Outdoor Education & Research Center

About the Center

The Jean McLaughlin Outdoor Education & Research Center (JMOERC) was first imagined by USAO faculty in 2015. The original floorplan was created using nothing more than PowerPoint, and much of the original design sketched by Dr.’s Rachel Jones and Jason Shaw is what you see today. In late 2019, through a generous donation by the McLaughlin family, that PowerPoint sketch was turned into a reality.

Three students looking at their microscopes in a classroom. A grant from the Kirkpatrick Foundation helped to outfit the center with educational supplies and equipment. Construction of the center was completed in late 2022 and saw its first outreach workshop series, the “USAO K-12 Teacher Outdoor Education”, take place that fall. The first university courses to use the space included the Fall 2022 Principles of Ecology Laboratory class, as well as Professor Blake Morgan’s Oil Painting class.

Student sitting outside with an easel drawing a building.

The center includes a fully functional laboratory classroom, abundant storage for field equipment, as well as a climate controlled greenhouse that can be used for USAO student and faculty research. JMOERC’s mission is to provide space for university courses focused on environmental or wildlife content, provide outdoor education for K-12 educators and student groups, as well as host community groups interested in learning more about Oklahoma’s ecosystems and landscapes.

To support the Jean McLaughlin Outdoor Education & Research Center, please use the "Give Now" button below. Options to donate include giving to the Habitat and Outdoor Classroom, Faculty Development and the School of Science and Physical Education. You can select a different fund by clicking the dropdown field under "I want to support."

Give to the Center

Photo Gallery

Students sitting outside and raising their hands.
Closeup shot of greenhouse planters.
Students mixing a solution in the lab classroom.
Turtle sitting outside in the grass.
Closeup shot of desks with a pond in the background.
Closeup shot of fermentation in the classroom.
Green plant leaves.
Two students working on a lab assignment.
Petri dishes.
Dr. Jones holding up a skeleton hand beside her own.
Closeup shot of test tubes.
Student working with liquid culture spores.
Outdoor view of pond and a turned over kayak.

Workshops and Events

Below is a list of available events hosted at the JMOERC. Click on the event you wish to learn more about for more details and a link for registration.