Funds That Support the Therkildsen Field Station at Emiquon

Above: The Therkildsen Field Station at Emiquon, near Havana, Illinois.

Make a Difference for Programs at the Therkildsen Field Station at Emiquon

The Therkildsen Field Station at Emiquon is UIS’ field research station at the site of The Nature Conservancy’s floodplain restoration along the Illinois River. Your gifts will help us expand and enrich the field station’s impact.

You can choose from two funds that support Therkildsen:

Friends of Emiquon

This fund provides general support for the many activities and programs at Therkildsen.

Alfred O. and Barbara Cordwell Therkildsen Field Station at Emiquon Fund 

[donate_button “14770475/UIS Alfred O. and Barbara Cordwell Therkildsen Field Station at Emiquon Fund”]

This fund support student research at or related to Emiquon.

About the Therkildsen Field Station

Named for Alfred O. and Barbara Cordwell Therkildsen

Director: Tom Rothfus, 217-206-7418,

Brief history: In 2007, The Nature Conservancy began restoring 7,425 acres of land immediately adjacent to the Illinois River from farmland to its natural state—a large river floodplain.  In 2008, UIS dedicated its field station (named Therkildsen in 2009).

Facilities: Laboratories, smart classroom, conference room, sleeping quarters for ten people, kitchen, storage, and restrooms.


  • Research: Students from UIS and many other institutions, faculty, research scientists, environmental agency personnel, and many others use Therkildsen as their base as they do research on the wetland restoration. Part of this research is monitoring the microbes, invertebrates, birds, and fish in and around the restoration lakes.
  • Education: UIS offers an ever-growing roster of classes connected to Therkildsen, many cross-disciplinary.
  • Outreach: We offer almost monthly “Walk and Talk” events for the community, field trips for K-12 students, volunteer opportunities for youth, a site for community organizations to meet, and we will continue to add activities that enrich central Illinois’ understanding of the restoration and our connection to the environment around us.

Current Needs:

  • More housing: Therkildsen provides excellent–if limited housing–for ten people. We need a full-scale dormitory with a larger kitchen. We would be able to accommodate more of the researchers who want to study Emiquon. We would also be able to provide housing for summer teacher development and student enrichment programs and camps.
  • More personnel: Most field stations have a fulltime director and additional support personnel. We have a part-time (very part-time) director, a corps of volunteers, and minimal additional paid personnel. Use of Therkildsen is growing every year.
  • Support for Outreach: We have many requests for programs at Therkildsen, but many require materials, instrumentation, and additional resources. If you have a vision for people from K-through-gray learning science, experiencing nature, appreciating the environment, and more, please consider giving to Friends of Emiquon.
  • Travel funds: Our students are eager to work at Therkildsen, but the cost of traveling to the restoration creates an obstacle. Gas cards as small as $10, $50, or $100 would help. An endowed fund that generates money for student research would be ideal.


We welcome your inquiries. Please feel free to contact us.