Spring 2021 Training Course

Virginia Master Naturalists Course Information for Applicants

Holston Rivers Chapter – Spring 2021

Many of you have shown interest in knowing more about nature. Some of you have said you’d like to take the Master Naturalist training class— but couldn’t do the schedule. But guess what?? Our classes (Holston Rivers Chapter) are online this year! Aaaaand the cost is reduced. Aaaand you still get to meet the same great teachers. Aaaaaand you’ll be able to do outdoor assignments on your own time.

Thank you for your interest in becoming a Virginia Master Naturalist (VMN) with the Holston Rivers Chapter. The VMN training class prepares you to become a Certified Virginia Master Naturalist volunteer. The VMN Program is a statewide corps of volunteers providing education, outreach, and service dedicated to the beneficial management of natural resources and natural areas within their communities.

Please note: VMN is a volunteer training and service-based program. If you do not intend to be an active volunteer and help to support our local natural resources through your volunteer service, then this class and organization may not be for you.

The basic training course covers the background knowledge and skills to prepare you for service as a VMN volunteer. This includes a wide range of topics in many areas relating to the natural sciences. Initial certification, as well as annual recertification, requires 8 hours of approved continuing education and 40 hours of approved volunteer service within a year following completion of your basic training course. You can complete your volunteer service in any of four key areas: citizen science, stewardship, education and outreach, and chapter administration.

Basic Training Course details are provided below:

  •  Classes run March 4-May 27, 2021
  • We strive to keep safety precautions in place and follow the guidance of our state organization and CDC.
  • Classes meet virtually (online) through the Zoom platform.  Field trips are at various locations in order to highlight the locations where we will be doing service hours.
  • Attendance is mandatory for certification, but allowances can sometimes be made to make up a class. These are to be made up within 12 months of completion of basic training in one of the following ways: during the next training cycle if yearly, with another VMN chapter, or by making special arrangements with approval from the Basic Training Committee Chair.
  • It is highly recommended that trainees have an email address and internet access since program communications and volunteer hour reporting are usually done in this manner.
  • Program is targeted toward adults, 18 or older. Youth, age 14-17, may apply under specific conditions.
  • Class size is limited to approximately 24 trainees.
  • Course fee of $65 covers basic training and course materials. A limited number of need-based scholarships are available. To request a scholarship, attach a letter to your application stating your need and the portion of the course fee that you can pay.
  • Send your completed Applicant Questionnaire and signed Enrollment Agreement, along with a check for $65 made payable to Holston Rivers Va. Master Naturalists Application, c/o Monica Hoel, PO Box 877, Emory, VA 24327. It must be postmarked by March 4, 2021.

Download the Application/Enrollment Agreement here:  

Check out the schedule here!

VMN Volunteer Application – 2021

Individuals with disabilities desiring accommodations in the application process should notify the Chapter Advisor, Tanya Hall at 276-781-7413 or (TDD number 1-800-828-1120) by the application deadline.

All applicants will be notified by email of their selection status.

Questions? Send an email to Monica Hoel