Michigan Conservation Stewards Program - Capital Area Fall 2019

September 10, 2019 - November 5, 2019

Fenner Nature Center, 2020 E Mt. Hope Avenue, Lansing, MI 48910 (First Class)

Contact: Georgia Peterson, petersog@msu.edu, 517-353-9435 (program), Bindu Bhakta, bhaktabi@msu.edu, 248-858-5198 (program) or Cathy Morris, morrisc@oakgov.com, 248-858-1639 (registration)

Thank you for your interest in the Michigan State University Extension Michigan Conservation Stewards Program (CSP), a training program for those who are enthusiastic about learning science-based ecosystem management principles and sharing this knowledge with others to help improve Michigan communities. Through participation in this program, you will learn essential strategies to help restore and conserve ecosystems in the Capital Region (primarily Ingham and Clinton Counties), and throughout Michigan.

Becoming a Conservation Steward involves the completion of the following:

 1. Classroom and field-based training led by experts in various fields of conservation and natural resources, including lectures, interactive learning and field experiences; 

2. Self-paced online learning modules provided via Michigan State University's Desire2Learn course management system which participants will complete on their own time; and

3. Volunteer service in the form of an in-class Capstone (applied) Project and additional community volunteer service related to restoring and conserving Michigan’s ecosystems. 

Program Planners for the Capital Region Conservation Stewards Program

include Michigan State University Extension, Michigan Nature Association, Ingham County Conservation District, and Fenner Nature Center.

Instruction is provided by Michigan Natural Features Inventory, Michigan State University Extension, and a variety of local experts.

The first class will be held at:
 Fenner Nature Center, 2020 E Mt. Hope Avenue, Lansing, MI 48910

Tel: 517-483-4224

Site information is available at: https://mynaturecenter.org/

Throughout the course, you will be visiting many ecologically diverse locations that highlight the natural ecosystems of the greater Lansing area. 

The 2019 CSP Capital Area Fall Session consists of approximately 40 hours of instruction:

  • Seven in-person sessions (21 hours of instruction) will be held on TUESDAY EVENINGS from 6 - 9 p.m. (locations subject to change)*:
    • Sept. 10: Program Introduction- Fenner Nature Center, Lansing
    • Sept. 17: Michigan’s Conservation Heritage-MUCC office, Lansing (pending)
    • Sept.24: Ecological Foundations—Michigan Nature Association, Okemos
    • Oct. 1: Stream Ecosystems—Harris Nature Center, Okemos (pending)
    • Oct. 15: Terrestrial Ecosystems (Grasslands)—Woldumar Nature Center, Delta Charter Twp (pending)
    • Oct. 22: Restoration, Resilience & Conservation Planning—Potter Park Zoo, Lansing (pending)
    • Nov. 5: Capstone Projects & Commencement—Michigan Nature Center, Okemos
  • Two FULL-DAY FIELD SESSIONS (14 hours of instruction) will be held on SATURDAYS from 9 a.m. - 4 p.m.)*:
    • Oct. 5:Terrestrial Field Experience: Forests at Fenner Nature Center
Aquatic Field Experience: Wetlands at Corey Marsh (Bath)
    • Oct.12: Aquatic Field Experience: Stream Systems at Ingham Co. Conservation District

                                Terrestrial Field Experience: Grasslands at Ingham Co. Conservation District

  • Five SELF-PACED ONLINE LEARNING MODULES (approximately 10 hours of self-paced material) will cover the following content:
    • Michigan's Unique Conservation Heritage & Making Choices for Natural Resources Management
    • Ecological Foundations
    • Forest and Ecosystems and Management
    • Lake and Wetland Ecosystems & Management

To become a Michigan Conservation Steward, participants must fulfill the following requirements:

  • Attend all classes (indoor and outdoor field experiences) and complete online learning modules
  • Complete a minimum of 40 hours of volunteer conservation service within one year (including hours spent on in-class Capstone Project)
  • Comply with the MSU Extension Volunteer Agreement and Code of Conduct.

To maintain status, Michigan Conservation Stewards must complete the following annually:

  • 20 hours of volunteer conservation service on approved projects
  • 8 hours of advanced training
  • Comply with the Michigan Conservation Stewards Program Manual of Policies and Procedures and the Conservation Stewards Program Volunteer Agreement and Code of Conduct

Program Registration Fee: $250. 

Last date to register is Aug. 20, 2019. 
A full refund minus a $25 cancellation fee will be assessed to those requesting a refund on or after Aug. 20, 2019 and up to seven business days prior to the start of class. No refunds will be issued six or less days prior to the start of class. Partial financial aid may be available. Please see "Scholarships" section below.

For complete program details please visit the Michigan Conservation Stewards Program page.

*Transportation and/or carpool options may be available.



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