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VM Story: Martha – Adkins Arboretum

Our next VM story takes us to the Eastern Shore where Martha was placed at Adkins Arboretum. She has worked as a biology teacher, science curriculum writer, and school administrator in the US, Austria, Belgium, and Ireland. “I am passionate about the environment and have trained as a Master Gardener and Master Naturalist in Frederick, Maryland as well as written several children’s books that promote biodiversity. I have a BS in Biological Sciences from the University of Maryland and an MA in Education from the University of Bath. I am a recent transplant to Easton and am happy to be assisting with the volunteer program at Adkins as an AmeriCorps member serving with Volunteer Maryland.”

Why are you doing a term of service with Volunteer Maryland and AmeriCorps? What motivated you to apply and accept this challenge?

“I have long been aware of the important land stewardship work of Adkins Arboretum and it has been on my radar screen as place where I would love to help out in some capacity. When I received a message through the Master Naturalist Listserv that Adkins was looking for an AmeriCorps member to serve as a Volunteer Coordinator, the opportunity to actually follow through with that desire became a real possibility. Through the interview process, I now have a great appreciation for and awareness of the role that AmeriCorps plays through regional organizations such as Volunteer Maryland in making a service year a viable option.”

“What are you hoping to gain from doing this? What skills are you looking to gain? How does this fit into your long-term goals?”

“As my long-term goal is to work for an environmental organization on the Eastern Shore of Maryland, serving as an AmeriCorps member at Adkins is an ideal vehicle to experience first-hand the workings of an environmental non-profit while meeting the many like-minded individuals and organizations that partner with Adkins. Over the course of the year, I will not only learn the administrative side of volunteer coordination but also the science content and understanding needed to train volunteers to teach the public about land stewardship. While my focus for the year will be on all aspects of volunteer coordination, ultimately my interest lies specifically in the area of environmental education.”