Umpqua Watersheds Blog


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Published September 5th, 2020 in Education-AmeriCorps

Ryan Kincaid is a native of the Finger Lakes region of New York. From an early age, she loved to explore the woods, creek, and lake and observe the numerous frogs, chipmunks, and other wildlife near her grandparents’ cottage. Ryan earned a Bachelor’s of Arts in Environmental Studies and a Master of Arts in Teaching from Hobart and William Smith College in Geneva, New York. During college, she created an after-school program in response to the low graduation rates of the local public school offering students a chance to get to know professionals in the field and learn about various career options. She also led after-school programs focused on reading/writing, environmentalism, and the creative arts. For 5 years after college, she taught science at a private middle school where she organized “eco” service days, harvest lunches, and coached cross country. As a teacher, she also coordinated “EcoFusion,” an after-school program which focused on environmental stewardship, community service, and the creative arts. Most recently, she participated in the ECO AmeriCorps program in Vermont, where she practiced plant identification, GIS mapping, and assisted with such projects as invasive plant management, native tree seedling propagation, community outreach, and landscape design.

Ryan has a passion for out-of-school and hands-on learning opportunities for youth and was first attracted to the Education and Outreach Leader position with Umpqua Watersheds (UW) because of its similarity to programs she has led and loved over the years. She strives to provide opportunities for others to develop an appreciation of nature while connecting with their local environment and its inhabitants. Ryan is eager to learn all she can during her time with UW and is excited to jump into a role where she can hone her skills as an environmental educator in Douglas County. She is looking forward to the variety of activities she will be doing, including programs on UW’s radio station, KQUA, and operating an educational drone; both will be new experiences for her. She is enthusiastic about brainstorming and implementing creative ideas and will be spending time developing at-home and socially distanced activities for local youth to engage with the environment. She feels that learning about and interacting with nature are crucially important and “when we closely observe something we get to know it a bit better, and begin to appreciate it a bit more. There is so much to appreciate about nature and I’m eager to help others see it.”



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