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Capital Area Master Naturalists

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Become a Master Naturalist

Photo by Mike Murphy
Photo by Mike Murphy

If you are interested in making a difference, we invite you to consider the training we offer each Winter/Spring. Volunteers are required to complete the Winter/Spring training course (usually 10 Saturdays),  40 hours of volunteer service and 8 advanced training hours each year. Many volunteer and advanced training opportunities make it easy to choose an area of study and service that reflects one’s expertise and interests. To retain your certification, completion of 40 hours of approved volunteer service and 8 hours advanced training is required annually.

Registration fees are $175, and are due at the orientation session. The fee covers the cost of the Master Naturalist curriculum text book, handouts given during the class, park entrance fees, space rental, mandatory security checks, a graduation luncheon, and certification materials (certificates, name badges, etc.).

Attendance is limited to 30 students to ensure trainees have a good class experience. We will receive many more applications than we have slots. Applications will be reviewed by the Applications and Admissions Committee to determine availability for volunteer service and coursework, as well as commitment to stewardship of our natural resources.

New Member Timeline

This is a generalized timeline; actual dates are finalized each year.

  • August 1: Applications become available on this website
  • August 31: Applications close.
  • Early October: Class chosen by committee, applicants notified.
  • Mid November: Mandatory orientation session for those applicants and waitlist people accepted.
  • Late Fall – Spring: 10 class periods, generally on Saturdays, ending April.
  • April: Classes end, new member graduation.
  • December: New Member required volunteer hours, advanced training and any make-up training to be finished and reported.
The application is available here.
To Transfer in From Another Chapter

The former chapter should write a letter (email accepted) at the member’s request to Capital Area indicating that the member is in good standing and has completed X number of hours of service and Y number of hours of advanced training. These numbers are credited to work achieved in the former chapter and subsequent work and service hours recorded by Capital Area. The cumulative hours for the year would be the basis for re-certification of the member and logged to the member for service milestone hours. Letters should be addressed to our membership coordinator,

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