Cohort Zoom

Greetings from Cohort VII

Our eager swarm of 25 got together on a windy Feb 27, 2020 evening for our initial class at Bridgewater College. At this intro session we “broke bread”, got to know some of our fellow mates, met some of the HMN officers and got the lay of the future land from our intrepid leader, Peggy Plass. Of course, this first meeting at McKinney Hall was our last, as the SARS-COV-2 viruses loomed their ugly little heads over the natural world. Although Bridgewater College closed, we all were hoping this disruption would be short lived & we’d be back at it soon. As we all know, life didn’t work out like that.

Over the summer, VMN pondered what to do with the ongoing training classes and decided they wanted to move ahead and to take the training online. We were given various options and 14 of us decided to continue. So, we became the Zoom cohort. We proceeded with nine sessions in the fall, from Forest Ecology to Fish. In addition to absorbing Master Naturalist bits, by default, we all became more efficient at Zoom. Our fall semester finished up with discussion of “The Nature Principle” by Richard Louv, an excellent reminder how much Vitamin N (Nature) is dearly needed in these pandemic times.

The spring semester began on February 25 this year with our project presentations, with ideas spanning from Astronomy to Wildlife corridors. Plus, a new (returning) member joined our swarm. Classes, still virtual of course, finished up April 8. We are now in the midst of our final exam, hoping Peggy is truly as empathetic as she appears on the computer screen!

Hoping to meet the rest of HMN soon, best to all from Cohort Zoom.

– Art Fovargue, Cohort VII, April 22, 2021

Top photo is Cohort VII in class. Screenshot is by Art Fovargue.

Update from the April 28 HMN board meeting:

Trainee field trips are being organized for May and June. HMN members who aren’t trainees may find CE opportunities with these trips that don’t fill with trainees.

With luck there will be an outdoor graduation in September!

HMNs are hoping to offer the next basic training class next spring 2022.