We want to thank our three AmeriCorps Members who did a fantastic job for us this year! This hard-working, Leelanau-loving trio leaves us in early November. They will be very much missed. In their own words, here’s what they loved about their time with the Leelanau Conservancy and what the future holds for each of them: (Photo taken at their last workbee, helping to create a new trail at DeYoung Natural Area. L-R Shelly Stusick, Andrea Hunt and Zack Pitman
I have thoroughly enjoyed the past six months serving at the Conservancy! I was able to participate in many amazing projects, including native plant restoration at Chippewa Run Natural Area. Most importantly, my term of service allowed me to see many of Leelanau’s special places and make lasting friendships within the community. Although I am sad to leave, I am extremely grateful for the time I spent here. Upon completing my service, I will return home to Mason to continue searching for my next experience in conservation and looking for any excuse to return to Leelanau!
I have been serving as a Huron Pines AmeriCorps member at the Leelanau Conservancy since January and will complete my service on November 9th. As a Leelanau native, I am very grateful for my time spent exploring more of the county and giving back to my community. This was a fantastic opportunity for me to gain professional skills and hands-on stewardship experience.
Upon completion of my AmeriCorps service, I have been provided an education award that will help me pursue a graduate certificate in Geographic Information Systems (GIS). In January, I will be moving to Denver, Colorado and attending the University of Denver. I am excited for this next chapter but will always hold Leelanau close to my heart.
I’m completing my service a week early in order to go on an extended road trip to the southwestern and western United States, a fantasy of mine since college graduation! With the dream of seeing the Grand Canyon and Redwood Forest, I plan on visiting as many national parks as possible as I make my way through Colorado, New Mexico, Arizona, California & Oregon over five weeks. I enjoyed my time in Leelanau so much that after my trip and the holidays I hope to be back in the county next field season aiding in preserving and managing the natural resources that we all love. It’s hard to choose, but one of my favorite parts from my time serving with the Conservancy was getting to know the natural areas so intimately through their management. Each area and preserve possesses so much history and uniqueness – it was so much fun to be out there almost every day. I’m going to miss the people here but the plants/natural areas as well!