Virginia State Parks: Lifelong Learning Opportunities
Rappahannock Community College offering Virginia State Parks focused
Lifelong Learning course!
This fall Belle Isle State Park on Virginia's Northern Neck. Lifelong learning is a new buzz-word in education and community service circles. These affordable non-credit overview courses can have topics that range from Introduction to Computers and How to Sell on eBay to Modern Philosophy and Civil War Foundations. The concept is that individuals who are not interested, or have completed formal, for-credit degree programs, may still be interested in semi-formal education opportunities on a variety of interesting topics.
CivilianConservation Corps-era cabins atWestmoreland embody the nation's history
The course, "Discovering Your Northern Neck State Parks" will help students understand the Civilian Conservation Corps, specific recreational and educational opportunities in those three parks, and information about the park's master planning process.
Westmoreland Park Manager Ken Benson (left) with Resource Specialist Paul Billings (right) is well versed in the park's natural, cultural, and historic resources.
With participation of Park Managers Ken Benson and Steve Davis of Belle Isle, the courses will feature on-site trips and access to ask questions of the park staff.
Exploring theVirginia State Parksin this new type of format would be a great fit for seniors who are looking to become more active in RVing, recreational, and outdoors activities. It would also be a good fit for homeschool leaders and teachers who are interested in taking children on field trips to these parks or creating a lesson plan or lesson unit about outdoor recreation. Many parks offer off-site and ranger-led programs for private, public and home school groups.
Belle Isle State Park Manager Tim Shrader (left) gives a tour of the park's new canoe-in campground to Resource Specialist Erik Moleen (center) and District Manager Fred Hazelwood. The four waterside primitive campsites came about through a master planning session with the National Park Service.
Even if you can't take this course, you can schedule a private tour or program about the parks with each park's education/interpretive staff. Current schedules of ranger-led programs can be found the park's events database by clicking here.Private programs may have attendance minimums, but are very affordable and will give you an opportunity to explore the park on your own schedule. For a private program, please contact the education/interpretive staff at the park you are interested in visiting.
A guided hayride tour of the parkwill be the highlight of the course trip to Belle Isle
The "Discovering Your Northern Neck State Parks" is being offered in late September through early October through Rappahannock Community College at [email protected] for information about the course and how to register.
If you are interested in hosting a course like this at your local community college, please contact your local college's Lifetime Learning office and put them in touch with the Virginia State Parks Environmental Education Manager, Christen Miller at [email protected].