June 5 2013 Sierra Ramsey 1The Mississippi Valley Field Naturalists (MVFN) are pleased to announce that Maberly area student Sierra Ramsey is the recipient of the 2013 Cliff Bennett Nature Bursary Award for post-secondary studies. Sierra, a graduating student of St. John Catholic High School in Perth, was presented with the $500 bursary on June 5 and congratulated by MVFN Vice-President Cliff Bennett and Bursary Committee volunteer Lucy Carleton. Sierra has been accepted into the Fish and Wildlife Technician program at Fleming College in Lindsay, Ontario, for the fall.

In her application, Sierra states “I am very interested in and spend a lot of time in the outdoors. I take saving the environment seriously”.

Sierra’s love for the outdoors has motivated her to take a demanding workload of courses in math, biology, and chemistry at St. John’s Catholic High School this year. She knows that this academic focus will help her in attaining her educational goal of becoming a conservation officer. Her summer experience includes working outdoors at a local provincial park. Teachers at her school have commented that she is “passionate about becoming a conservation officer, and even a short conversation with her makes this very evident. She has earned the respect of many teachers at this school and certainly the admiration of her peers.”

The Cliff Bennett Nature Bursary Award is given annually by the MVFN to a local graduating secondary school student going on to post-secondary studies relating to nature or the environment. The Bursary Fund was established in 2007 by friends and family of local naturalist, MVFN founding member, and retired educator Cliff Bennett on the occasion of his 75th birthday. The bursary is intended to assist local students who have a love and appreciation of the natural world in following this passion towards a career in environmental stewardship and conservation.

The annual Cliff Bennett Nature Bursary is administered by the MVFN. Application forms and further details may be found on the MVFN’s website at www.mfvn.ca