The Cape Eleuthera Institute was born out of the growing need to expand both research and sustainable systems initiatives operating under the auspices of The Island School, an educational semester program founded by Chris and Pam Maxey in 1999. Capitalizing on the momentum generated by The Island School and the desire to address pertinent environmental issues facing The Bahamas and the Caribbean, core research and sustainable systems design initiatives were moved to the Cape Eleuthera Institute. This increases our capacity to undertake larger projects, create space for courses and workshops in tropical sciences and sustainable design, and facilitate more formal collaboration with other like-minded institutions and governments.
The completion of the first phase of the Cape Eleuthera Institute was celebrated on March 31, 2006 by the Rt. Honourable Perry Christie, Prime Minister of The Bahamas, in the company of members of his cabinet, other government officials, Cape Eleuthera Foundation trustees, scientists, educators, students from The Island School and the Deep Creek Middle School, and generous supporters.
Powered 100% by the sun and built from nearly 75% local materials, the campus of the Cape Eleuthera Institute demonstrates an unparalleled opportunity to live, work, and study in a cutting edge atmosphere. During the celebration, the switch was thrown on the power system, marking nearly five years of effort to develop the first inter-tie between solar and conventional power systems in The Bahamas. This renewable energy not only provides power to all buildings on campus, including a 5,000 square foot flow-through seawater system, we are indirectly using this renewable energy to channel seawater into help rehabilitate a mangrove creek on our campus that was once disturbed by previous development.
With the completion of two 12-bed dormitory buildings and a unique timber framed classroom and common space, the Cape Eleuthera Institute now has the capacity to provide unique opportunities for research scientists interested in the local terrestrial and marine environments, or for professors and teachers wanting to provide their students with a holistic experience that combines conventional research in tropical sciences with the message of sustainable development and design. The newest addition to our sustainable campus is the Anderson-Cabot Hall for Graduate Studies. The three-stories tall building has LEED certification, a testament to our devotion to sustainable design.
Our campus is located on a peninsula known as 'Cape Eleuthera,' separated by six miles of mangrove creeks and bush from our neighbors in Deep Creek (or 'Freetown' as it is named on Google Maps). Situated adjacent to an abandoned 100-acre+ golf course on a man-made, miniature peninsula of our own, the research community is intimately intertwined with that of the The Island School, a semester and summer program for high school sophomores and juniors from around the world. The two campuses are separated by a short bridge over a reclaimed mangrove swamp.
Our programs employ professionals from around the world and from settlements close-by on Eleuthera. A small child-care center on campus, the Early Learning Center (ELC), teaches little-ones between 2 and 7 years old. Our Center for Sustainable Development (CSD) leads the charge in innovating towards more sustainable systems on campus, creating a model for other communities in this island nation. Research scientists, interns and the Educational Programs team often engage with seventh- through ninth-graders at our affiliated Deep Creek Middle School (DCMS) through outreach programs in town.
All programs are supported by the Cape Eleuthera Foundation (CEF), a non-profit 501(c)(3) corporation providing charitable funding support for education, scientific research, community leadership, and sustainable technologies.