Master Naturalist Program

Master Naturalist Program

final UMD extension wordmark Master Naturalist

Welcome to the Master Naturalist Program!

The Maryland Master Naturalist Program is a state-wide program sponsored by University of Maryland Extension. The program educates residents about the natural history of the state and provides structured training on a diverse assortment of natural history topics.  Additionally, the program empowers residents to share and care for natural places in their communities. 

Program Specifics

The program held at the Anacostia Watershed Society focuses specifically on the plants and animals of the Anacostia River Watershed and how human activity has impacted the Anacostia River over time.  Session topics include an introduction to Maryland's natural history, an exploration of how humans have impacted the local environment, the "science of science", teaching and interpretation basics, birds, mammals, reptiles, amphibians, fish, insects, and botany. Participants will be taking part in field trips to local areas throughout the watershed and will engage in hands-on work that supports the restoration of the Anacostia River.

The program consists of 60 hours of training, followed by 40 hours of volunteer service to become officially certified.  The program cost is $250, due upon acceptance to the program.

5.26.18 hike at the fall line2019 cohort at Kingmand
The 2018 cohort enjoys a hike at the fall line along the Northwest Branch; the 2019 cohort enjoys a stop at Kingman Island.

The next Master Naturalist program at AWS will be held on Saturdays, once per month, from 9:00am - 4:00pm, June 2020 - May 2021.

Applications for the 2020/2021 program can be submitted February 1st - March 31st via email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Click here to download the application.

Do you have questions before you apply? Email Maddie Koenig, Senior Environmental Educator, at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call 301-699-6204 x. 112. 

Visit the blog to learn more about  the program, training, and subsequent volunteer service.

Read about the experiences of one 2018 participant here!  

Please stay tuned for updates! Click here to sign up for the Anacostia Watershed Society's weekly email newsletter.

More in this category: « Watershed Stewards Academy
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