The Michigan Conservation Stewards Program (MCSP) is a volunteer training program that teaches individuals about all aspects of ecosystem management. Through this program participants learn how to understand, promote, support, actively contribute to and/or lead significant volunteer conservation management activities on public and private lands.
Classroom and field-based sessions offer hands-on learning opportunities focused on ecological foundations, natural resource decision-making, forestlands, grasslands, wetlands, lakes, streams, agriculture, land use and volunteer opportunities. Instructors include MSU faculty and MSU Extension staff, representatives from the Michigan Natural Features Inventory, Michigan Department of Natural Resources and Environment, and a variety of instructors from local organizations.
Requirements for becoming a Conservation Steward:
- completion of the core curriculum (40+ hours of in-class learning and field training)
- 40 hours of volunteer conservation service within one year
- 8 hours of advanced training and an additional 40 hours of volunteer conservation service are required for annual recertification
Examples of volunteer service:
- mapping and monitoring invasive species on public lands
- designing and installing a rain garden at a school to help manage stormwater
- educating individuals on strategies to manage invasive species (ex. phragmites, garlic mustard)
The next Oakland County Conservation Stewards Program is scheduled in 2015. Please contact Linda Smith at 248-858-0887 for more information.
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