What Naturalists Say About Their Experience at Glen Helen
The following testimonials are from Naturalists and Ecocamp counselors who have been part of the Glen in the past few years, 2017-2019.
NK: Wow! A lot has happened in 3 years! As my last day working here at the Glen comes to an end I can’t help but think about all of the amazing memories and friends I’ve made here. I’ve learned so much about myself, environmental education, raptors, wildlife rehabilitation and so much more. The memories I’ve created here will definitely stay with me forever. This place has fostered some of my most cherished friendships and provided me with so much love and laughter. As a kid I never would have imagined this Cali girl making her way to Ohio, but I’m sure glad things fell into place the way they did to get me out to the land of corn! This place and these people have helped me get through so many hardships these past 3 years, whether they know it or not. The community and support I’ve received here has been nothing short of life saving. I’m sad that my time here is ending but thankful that I was able to spend 3 amazing years doing what I love with people that make life so much fun! Thank you to everyone that’s been a part of my Glen journey! Y’all rock and I love you!
My next quest is taking me to Troy Ohio where I will be working with Brukner Nature Center doing more wildlife rehab and education and I’m so excited to see what this next chapter has in store for me!
MC: May 26, 2019
I can’t believe how fast ten months went by. Working at Glen Helen has been such a wonderful time, and I’m going to miss it dearly. All of the people in these pictures have become so much more than coworkers, they are like my family ❤️ I love you all very much!!!
The ember of my entire time at the Glen was getting to work alongside such incredible people. I’ve never had a group of friends like all of you and I cannot put into words how much every single one of you mean to me. This place, the kiddos, the people I’ve met and gotten close to, the experience as a whole, and the magic of the Glen saved my life. And I will be forever grateful.
“…over the past 10 months, you’ve helped me become so much calmer, resilient, and mature. My mental health is so much better now than it was in college and I attribute that to the incredibly caring workplace you created. Thank you so much for working hard and sacrificing other parts of your life in the name of our community. And thank you for teaching me about fire, joy and comfort for children. I will carry it all with me forever….I can’t neatly summarize everything you and the Glen did for me.”
Working as a Naturalist Counselor at the Glen Helen Ecocamp this summer was transformative, humbling, and incredibly fulfilling. Without a doubt, it was one of the most meaningful experiences I have ever had. I have never been more positive, or felt more at peace, with my decision to become a middle school teacher. I have my campers, fellow Naturalists, and incredible director to thank for that.
To the amazing people I had the honor of working/living with this summer: your love, support, ideas, and guidance have helped me grow in countless ways.
What I’ve learned while working as a Naturalist:
1. Be mindful, always. Of where you are, and of others.
2. Free exploration is indeed one of the most enriching experiences a kid (or adult) can have. Nature is so cool. Immerse yourself into it.
3. While magical moments of impact are often spontaneous, they can also be created. There is nothing better than watching those magical planned moments play out, and thinking to yourself, “Oh, yeah. They’re going to remember this for the rest of their lives.”
4. In the world of teaching, collaboration is absolutely necessary. There is power in creating a team of support.
5. Get to know your kids. Be a goofball. Laugh with them. Let them turn you into a meme. Listen to them, and they will listen to you.
6. Best job ever.
If life is like water, and you flow with it, it will lead you to where you need to be. And, I am sure, that Glen Helen was exactly where I needed to be. Thank you, Glen Helen, for reminding me of the endless possibilities of creating a rich educational experience for kids. For that, I am forever grateful.
Being a naturalist counselor at Glen Helen Ecocamp was one of the most magical and humble thing that I have ever done in my life.
I did not only teach kids about nature and its surrounding these past two months, but they have also transformed me. I had the best coworkers and the amazing boss to share this unforgettable journey. I think that everyone should live this kind of experience to remember how beautiful the world is. An harmony and cooperation between people and the rest of nature and between people themselves; instead of abuse and competition.
I will be forever thankful for this inspiration.