Virginia Master Naturalist Program classes start February 16

The Holston Rivers Chapter of the Virginia Master Naturalists is enrolling students for the 2012 Basic Training Class. The thirteen-week course offers diverse classes on all aspects ofSouthwest Virginiaecology. Local experts will teach subjects such as local geology and karst systems, groundwater systems, aquatic biology, native animals, ornithology, forestry, wildflowers, and more. Related field trips visit interesting sites such as Pinnacle Natural Reserve, the Appalachian Trail, Buller Fish Hatchery, and the Mount Rogers Naturalist Rally.

The $100 tuition fee covers registration fees, field trips, books and other resources, and Holston Rivers VMN chapter dues for 2012. Classes start on Thursday, February 16, 2012, and run through Thursday, May 10. Classes meet from 6:30-9:30 p.m. on Thursdays at the Southwest Virginia Higher Education Center in Abingdon. Field trips are scheduled on Saturdays.

The training class is open to allVirginiaresidents. No prior experience in the sciences is necessary, merely an interest in the natural world.Tennesseeresidents are welcome to participate. The class is great for teachers.

After completing basic training, class members can choose to be a member of the Holston Rivers Chapter and pursue certification as a Virginia Master Naturalist.

The Virginia Master Naturalist program is a statewide corps of volunteers providing education, outreach, and service dedicated to the beneficial management of natural resources and natural areas within their communities. Interested Virginians become Master Naturalists through training and volunteer service.

FAQ, information about chapter activities, and an application for the 2012 Basic Training Course can be found on our website: For more information and an application, contact:

Monica Hoel –

Shauna Russell –

“Virginia Master Naturalist programs and employment are open to all, regardless of race, color, national origin, sex, religion, age, disability, political beliefs, sexual orientation, or marital or family status. An equal opportunity/affirmative action employer.”


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