Aerial view of the G. H. Gordon Biological Station.

G. H. Gordon Biological Station


Established through the generosity of Mr. & Mrs. George Gordon, the biological station at Rockwell Lake is Hillsdale College’s field research laboratory in northern lower Michigan. It is the largest private college biological station in the state of Michigan and the fifth largest among all Michigan universities (public and private).

The tract includes 685 acres of old fields, forests, marshes, swamps, bogs, a trout stream, and a lake (Rockwell Lake). It is located approximately 25 miles south of Cadillac near the town of Luther in Lake County.

Established in 1999, the station is the newest addition to the field biology program at Hillsdale College. The station is used by the Biology Department for weekend field trips, summer courses, and student and faculty research.

Educational activities are supported by the Plym Residence Village which currently consists of four buildings that house 60 students.


The mission of the Gordon Biological Station is to:

  • serve as a natural laboratory for field biology education and research
  • provide a natural sanctuary for the biota native to northwest lower Michigan
  • foster an appreciation for environmental stewardship and conservation based on sound scientific principles


Research and teaching activities are conducted at the Plym Residence Village as well as a modular classroom building. The center consists of four dormitories (60-occupant capacity), a cafeteria, laboratory, and a classroom with a small library and offices.