Be an environmental steward and become a Master Naturalist!
The program educates and trains adult volunteers so they are better equipped to share natural resource information with others in their communities and to assist with environmental conservation and restoration activities. We all have a responsibility to protect the natural resources in the places where we live in order to ensure our world is fit for the future. University of Illinois Extension partners with local agencies to accomplish the Master Naturalist mission is providing science-based educational opportunities that connect people with nature and help them become engaged environmental stewards.
Throughout the 11-week program, participants gain knowledge and have a better understanding of the following topics:
Geology, Soils, Weather & Climate, Wetlands, Understanding the Natural World, Ethics, Entomology, Prairie, Botany, Forests, Rivers & Streams, Natural Divisions, Ornithology, Herpetology & Mammalogy
As part of the hands-on learning process, participants go on field trips throughout Illinois.
Previously visited sites include Great River Museum, Pere Marquette State Park, Emiquon Nature Conservancy, Rock Springs Nature Center.
Only 60 volunteer hours are needed for certification. Only 30 hours are needed yearly to remain certified. During the first year as a trainee, no additional continuing education hours are required. Only 10 continuing education hours needed yearly to maintain certification.
You must be 18 years or older, enjoy the outdoors, enjoy stewardship projects and have the desire to become a Master Naturalist. No previous experience is necessary to be a part of this program.
January 11 - March 29
Some Saturday Field Trips
Registration deadline is January 6!
While the cost of the 11-week program is $150, participants may be eligible for partial fee waivers from University of Illinois Extension. Please contact us for details.
If you would like additional information about the Master Naturalist Program or have questions, please email Extension Educator, Doug Gucker or call 217.877.6042.
If you need a reasonable accommodation to participate, please contact the event coordinator or call 217.877.6042. Early requests are strongly encouraged to allow sufficient time to meet your needs, when possible.