Volunteers needed for volcano naturalist program

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CHELATCHIE — Applications will be accepted until Wednesday for participation in the second year of the Mount St. Helens Volcano Naturalist Program.

The 12-week adult science education program teaches participants the fundamentals of Mount St. Helens’ geology and biology.

It involves 11 classes from 6 to 9 p.m. on Wednesdays at the Gifford Pinchot National Forest headquarters, 10600 N.E. 51st Circle, between Feb. 19 and May 14, plus three weekend field trips.

Participation costs $200, paid to the Mount St. Helens Institute. The money pays for books, course materials and refreshments.

Participants commit to a minimum of 60 volunteer hours at Mount St. Helens within five months of the completing the course. Volunteer opportunities include visitor services, interpretation, help on trails and climbing routes along with school and community presentations.

Second-year participants are eligible for advance training and a chance to fill leadership roles in Mount St. Helens Institute programs.

“As we work to expand education and recreation opportunities, including the opening of the Science and Learning Center at Coldwater, we will increasingly engage volunteers to help us welcome and educate visitors,” said Tom Mulder, manager of the Mount St. Helens National Volcanic Monument.

For more information and to apply, go online to www.mshinstitute.org or call Amy Tanska, institute volunteer programs manager at 360-449-7826.

Her email address is atanska@mshinstitute.org.

Applicants will be notified of their acceptance on Jan. 31.