PO Box 10243
Fairbanks, AK, 99710




"Let children walk with Nature, let them see the beautiful blendings and communions of death and life, their joyous inseparable unity, as taught in woods and meadows, plains and mountains and streams of our blessed star, and they will learn that death is stingless indeed, and as beautiful as life."

~ John Muir

click image to see larger version


"Melissa is a broadly-educated, dedicated and wonderful instructor who is so good at what she does I want her to teach my kids everything she knows -- and I know she will ('cause she's their mom). She's right at home working as an integral component of an entomological research project, as a classroom instructor with any age group (including the handicapped) , and, her specialty, being immersed among the biodiversity of the great outdoors with a bunch of kids at her side."
~ Derek S. Sikes


Bachelor of Science, Outdoor Recreation
Unity College
Unity, Maine
December, 1989


"I am in love with this world. I have nestled lovingly in it. I have climbed its mountains, roamed its forests, sailed its waters, crossed its deserts, felt the sting of its frosts, the opression of its heats, the drench of its rains, the fury of its winds, and always have beauty and joy waited upon my goings and comings."
~ John Burroughs

NATURALIST - Pomfret Audubon Center, Pomfret, Connecticut
Developed and instructed week long environmental education day camp for ages 7-14. Also
served as Assistant Director and camp nurse.
June - August 2003

EDUCATION GRANT COORDINATOR - Connecticut DEP James L. Goodwin Conservation Center, Hampton, Connecticut
Grant coordinator for teacher training program (SNAP - School Nature Area Program) that provided teachers and schools with the support and workshop and inservice training to develop and use the school's nature area for hands-on interdisciplinary environmental education. Developed and wrote manual and curriculum based outdoor education teaching materials for teachers. Provided on-site modelling programs with teachers and students to encourage nature area use. Developed resource library and equipment loan kits and manuals for those kits.
June 1997 - June 2003

NATURALIST - Holiday Hill Day Camp, Mansfield, Connecticut.
Nature Specialist for summer day camp. Organized and taught programs on nature exploration for children age 3-14. Trip leader for week long backpacking trip. Created, organized, and co-instructed week long sessions of Spring Vacation Camp.Trained the camp's nature specialist for four years following full time summer employment years. Helped re-stock and re-develop nature center after fire destroyed equipment.
Summer 1996-2003, Spring 1997-2000

NATURALIST - Ragged Hill Woods Environmental Education Center, Pomfret, Connecticut
Instructed four hour environmental education programs on habitat ecology, ocean tidepool ecology, and insects. Also instructed overnight programs.
May - June, and September 1996

NATURALIST - Monterey County Outdoor School, Boulder Creek, California.
Instructed week long environmental Residential programs focused on cycles, conservation, energy, communities, adaptation, and change.
September 1991 - February 1992

INSTRUCTOR - Poko MacCready Outdoor Education Center, Willsboro, New York.
Instructed recreational and environmental educational classes for day and residential programs. Also taught living history 1812 homestead program. Created outreach school program .
September 1990 - May 1991

NATURALIST - Greenkill Environmental Education Center, Huguenot, New York.
Instructed three to five day residential environmental programs.
February - June 1990

NATURALIST - W. Alton Jones Environmental Education Center, West Greenwich, Rhode Island.
Field counselor for overnight summer camp. Instructed week long environmental programs.
June - September 1989, 1990

INTERN - Chewonki Foundation, Wiscasset, Maine.
Participated in Environmental Program staff training and assisted in week long residential environmental programs.
March and May 1989

LOGISTICS MANAGER - Hurricane Island Outward Bound School, Newry, Maine.
Responsible for upkeep and maintenance of field gear for twenty patrol cages and the resupply cage. Kept inventory on all gear in supply and in the field.
May - September 1988


"And the world cannot be discovered by a journey of miles, no matter how long, but only by a spiritual journey, a journey of one inch, very arduous and humbling and joyful, by which we arrive at the ground at our feet,
and learn to be at home."
~ Wendell Berry

SUBSTITUTE - Mansfield School District, Mansfield, Connecticut
Substitute classroom teacher and Instructional Aide for pre-school to fifth grade classrooms.
October 1996 - May 1997

HELPER - Kidderbrook Montessori School Ashford, Connecticut
Guided children through activities designed to promote independent learning skills.
September - June 1997

SUBSTITUTE - Meeting Street Center, East Providence, Rhode Island
Substitute classroom teacher for severe and profoundly handicapped children.
Assisted with field trips.
May - August 1995

SUBSTITUTE - Woonsocket School District, Woonsocket, Rhode Island.
Substitute for 7th to 12th grade classroom teachers in a variety of subjects.
January - March 1990, March - June 1992

SUBSTITUTE - Dixon Unified School District, Dixon, California.
Substitute for 3rd to 12th grade classroom teachers in a variety of subjects.
January - March 1992


"Never doubt that a small, group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world.
Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has."
~ Margaret Mead

Connecticut Outdoor And Environmental Education Association (COEEA)
Board Position of Windham County Representative - September 1997 to June 2003
COEEA Annual Conference Co-Chair - 2002 and 2003
COEEA Annual Conference Committee - 2001

Connecticut Schoolyard Habitat Committee
Board Position - September 1998 - June 2001

Ashford School Parent Teacher Organization
Courtyard Garden Project Coordinator - 2002-2003


"Those who contemplate the beauty of the earth find reserves of strength that will endure as long as life lasts."
~Rachel Carson

New England Environmental Education Alliance (NEEEA) Annual Conference
In Vermont October 1998 - "Schooyard Habitat Development"
In Massachussetts October 1999 - "Activities for Developing and Using School Nature Areas"
In Rhode Island Octoberf 2000 - "Using School Nature Areas - Two Models"

Recieved the prestigious 'NEEEA Program Award' in Maine in September 2001

North American Association of Environmental Education (NAAEE) Annual Conference
In Boston, Massachussets August 2002 - "Teaching Teachers About Schoolyard Habitats: Three Successful Models"

Massachusetts Environmental Education Society (MEES) Annual Conference
In Worcester, Massachussetts March 2000 - "Developing and Using School Nature Areas"

New England Wildflowere Society and Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University Education Programs
In Framingham, Massachussetts December 2000 - "Creating and Using Schoolyard Habitats"


"While we are born with curiosity and wonder and our early years full of the adventure they bring, I know such inherent joys are often lost. I also know that, being deep within us, their latent glow can be fanned to flame again by awareness and an open mind."
~ Sigurd Olson

CASHIER - Community Food COOP, Bozeman, Montana
Cashiered, closed store, and shelved products. Became bookkeeper responsible for daily and weekly totaling of sales and databasing breakdown of departmental sales.
February 1993 - May 1995

LUNCH AIDE - Bozeman Public Schools, Bozeman, Montana
Set up furniture for lunch cycles, patrolled lunch room, and supervised recess
activity following lunch.
August - November 1993

CAREGIVER - John Fogarty Center Group Homes, North Providence, Rhode Island
Assisted with daily living skills for residents of mentally retarded group home system. Assisted with Special Olympics.
May - August 1987


"We cannot remember too often that when we observe nature, and especially the ordering of nature, it is
always ourselves alone we are observing."
~ G.C. Lichtenberg

American Red Cross CPR/AED for the Professional Rescuer - Expires March 2004
American Red Cross Basic First Aid - Expires June 2005
CT Department of Environmental Protection's Master Wildlife Conservationist Certification - Completed April 2002

Visit my husband's website which lists all the websites he's designed (including a site devoted to burying beetles, tiger beetles, and the beetle fauna of Rhode Island, among others).

first posted 9 July 1997; last updated 4 August 2009
Page designed by Derek Sikes (so blame him if you find anything too tacky for your tastes).