About the Program
Thank you for your interest in becoming a Texas Master Naturalist (TMN). As aspiring master naturalists, you recognize the benefits of connecting with nature, from personal health to experiencing joy. In the greater Big Bend area, we are fortunate to have national and state parks, nature areas, and open space that provide plentiful and gratifying opportunities to achieve our TMN mission:
provide education, outreach, and service dedicated to the beneficial management of natural resources and natural areas within our communities.
Our members have built and maintained trails, native plant and pollinator gardens, bird blinds, wildlife watering features, and viewing platforms. Members also help with visitor orientation and interpretive hikes in parks and natural areas. Our chapter projects have included wetland restoration and maintenance (Sandia Wetlands), restoration of riparian environments (Alamito Creek), working with the Dark Skies Initiative (reducing light pollution), and more.
We look forward to welcoming you as members of the Tierra Grande Chapter and collaborating with you during training sessions where you will experience the diverse ecosystems of the Big Bend area and gain the knowledge, skills, and connections needed to achieve our TMN mission.
Registration for 2023 is now closed. If you are interested in becoming a Texas Master Naturalist, please send an email to email@example.com with “Training 2024” in the subject line. Your name and contact information will be added to our list of prospective members and you will be contacted in March about training for 2024. Thank you for your interest and we look forward to welcoming you as a Texas Master Naturalist.
The Texas Master Naturalist book forms the basis of the statewide curriculum for new member training. A minimum of 40 hours of combined classroom and field experiences is required to earn the designation of Texas Master Naturalist. Tierra Grande has customized the curriculum into 9 training sessions focused on local ecosystems within the greater Big Bend area. To achieve the 40 hour minimum training time, members-in-training are required to attend at least 7 of the 9 sessions. Each session provides valuable information and experts donate their time to ensure that training sessions are professional and meaningful, consequently, all members-in-training are encouraged to attend every session.
The sessions will begin in July and continue through October. Each session will be held on a Saturday, generally from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Please review the dates and locations of the training sessions in the schedule provided. The first session—Texas Master Naturalist: Introduction and Overview—will be on Saturday, July 15 at the Alpine Public Library. During this session you will sign into your TMN account and learn how to record training and service hours—a skill that you will need throughout training, so the session is not optional. If possible, please have the electronic device (cell phone, tablet, notebook computer) that you are most likely to use for logging your training hours.
The first session will also include distribution of the training manual and TMN books, safety overview, and review of TMN operation and policies. Carpooling to all training sessions is encouraged and will be facilitated during the July 15 training session.
Note: Each trainee will be responsible for bringing their own food and water, including lunch, to all training sessions.
You will be provided additional detail on each training session before July 15. In general, each training session will be 6 to 7 hours long. Experts in botany, wildlife management, grassland management, and many other natural resource topics will present at each location. All members-in-training will participate according to their abilities in 2 to 3 hours of actual service and interpretive activities in collaboration with our partners at each site (such as State Parks, CDRI, and The Nature Conservancy).
Please contact Warren Shaul (firstname.lastname@example.org) if you know that you will have a conflict for attending the July 15 training. We will likely have an alternative Session 1 that will occur on a weeknight, either the week before or the week after July 15.
Class of 2023 Training Schedule
At this point in time, we plan to have 9 one-day training sessions with options for overnight stays at 2 specific locations. One-day sessions will make training more accessible and affordable to new members. Hands-on experiences will characterize all sessions, including hikes, working with our partners, learning about and enjoying nature. Experts will provide information on a range of topics, including wildlife management, habitat restoration, engaging visitors to parks and natural areas, and more.