Ripple Effect Ecotours, in partnership with University of Florida’s Whitney Laboratory for Marine Bioscience, offers the Coastal Module and the Uplands Module of the Florida Master Naturalist Program. The FMNP is an environmental education extension program offered through the University of Florida-Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF-IFAS) in conjunction with Ripple Effect Ecotours.
Once you complete a module, you will be registered with UF-IFAS as a Florida Master Naturalist for that module, and you will be prepared to share your knowledge about Florida’s natural world along with its ecological and environmental history.
The FMNP is not a degree-seeking program. It’s appropriate for both the novice and the highly skilled environmental professional. The classes are perfect for volunteers and staff members of nature centers, preserves and other environmental education facilities, ecotourism operators and guides, teachers seeking environmental education contact hours and anyone with an enthusiasm for learning about Florida’s environment.
The Florida Master Naturalist Program
Classes are held at the Whitney Laboratory in the town of Marineland, near St. Augustine, FL. The classroom is the 40,000 acres of the Guana-Tolomato-Matanzas National Estuarine Research Reserve. Each module consists of 40-hours of training which includes classroom instruction, field trips and practical interpretive experience in the ecology, habitats, vegetation, wildlife and conservation issues specific to Florida ecosystems. In addition, the program addresses the role of society in conservation, develops naturalist interpretation skills and discusses environmental ethics.