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TPWD News Release — July 20, 2009

Master Naturalist Program Seeks Applicants

Statewide Fall Training Courses Offered

AUSTIN, Texas — Thirteen chapters of the Texas Master Naturalist program have announced fall training classes for volunteers wanting to help conserve our natural resources.

The Texas Master Naturalist program — now with 38 chapters across the state — develops a corps of well informed citizen volunteers who educate their communities about natural resource management. The Texas program has won numerous awards and helped spawn a similar national movement.

The main qualification needed to become a Certified Texas Master Naturalist is an interest in learning and taking an active role in conservation. Volunteers receive a minimum of 40 hours of training from educators and specialists with universities, government agencies, nature centers and museums. Training topics include interpretation and management of natural resources, ecological concepts, eco-regions of Texas and natural systems management.

Volunteers are expected to contribute 40 hours of service a year in community education, demonstration and habitat enhancement projects. They are also expected to pursue a minimum of eight hours of advance training in areas of personal interest.

Texas Master Naturalist Chapters offering volunteer training this fall are listed below with contact information. Enrollment is limited in most chapters. If a deadline has passed contact the chapter to see if seating is still available. Other chapters are planning to offer a fall class. Contact the state office of the Texas Master Naturalist program to seek other training locations.

Texas Parks and Wildlife Department and Texas AgriLife Extension co-sponsor the Texas Master Naturalist Program. Information about existing chapters or forming a new can be obtained by contacting Sonny Arnold, Assistant Program Coordinator, 111 Nagle Hall, 2258, TAMU, College Station, TX 77843-2258, sarnold@ag.tamu.edu, (979)458-1099. The program also maintains a detailed and diverse Web site.

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