Nebraska Children’s Groundwater Festival recognizes Grand Island specialist as Outstanding Educator
LINCOLN, Neb. (KSNB) - The Nebraska Forest Service announced that Marcia Lee, Central Platte NRD information and education specialist from Grand Island, has been recognized with an Excellence in Conservation & Environmental Education Award as the 2023 Outstanding Educator. These awards recognize excellence in delivering Project Learning Tree and Project WET environmental education programs to educators, youth and the public throughout Nebraska.
The Outstanding Educator Award recognizes a Nebraska educator who utilizes Project Learning Tree and/or Project WET regularly in their instruction, curriculum, or educational programming. While educators of all types can be recognized, this award brings to the forefront those individuals whose execution of quality environmental education in their work with youth “sets the standard” in the state that other Nebraska educators should strive to emulate and achieve.
“Marcia represents the best of environmental education in our state,” said Jack Hilgert, conservation education coordinator with the Nebraska Forest Service and Nebraska state coordinator for Project Learning Tree and Project WET. “While Marcia does not work within the formal classroom, her education programs impact the instruction and learning for thousands of youths each year within the Central Platte NRD and beyond. She is always happy to explore innovative strategies, partnerships, and collaborations which inspire the next generation of conservation stewards in our great state.”
Within her role at Central Platte NRD, Lee organizes the Nebraska Children’s Groundwater Festival with partners using the Project WET curriculum to teach lessons on water. Since 1988, more than 31,000 students have been educated at the Nebraska Children’s Groundwater Festival and it has been replicated in 42 states, as well as Mexico, Canada, India, and the United Kingdom.
“Marcia Lee and her team at the Central Platte NRD consistently elevate high quality environmental learning opportunities for youth and the public in central Nebraska,” said Megan Grimes, Nebraska Association of Natural Resource Districts public relations director and Nebraska Project Learning Tree and Project WET steering committee Member. “Each spring hundreds of fifth graders learn about all aspects of groundwater and its importance to Nebraska by attending fun-filled, hands-on activities.”
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