Stories from the Field

Staff Spotlight: Linnea Joy Pierson

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Linnea Joy Pierson- Environmental Science Educator at Yosemite

Whether it’s our national park classrooms, the incredible opportunity to impact our local communities through science and education or the life-changing experiences we get to witness when young people participate in our programs, at NatureBridge we have so much to be grateful for! For Environmental Science Educator Linnea Joy Pierson, the moments she cherishes most are the times when she can see the joy, curiosity and community developing in her students while exploring the Yosemite wilderness. Originally from San Jose, CA, Linnea grew up valuing the outdoors and even attended a NatureBridge program (then called Yosemite Institute) as a student where she felt the transformative power of connecting with nature first-hand.

As a former student of NatureBridge/Yosemite Institute, I am living proof that this is an invaluable experience that has untold ripples.
Linnea Joy Pierson, NatureBridge Environmental Science Educator, Yosemite

That has come full circle with Linnea now working as the evening manager at NatureBridge’s Yosemite campus. Linnea is thankful to be able to experience the excitement of investigating macroinvertebrates, the sense of accomplishment when hiking to the top of a waterfall and the transformation of students who have the opportunity to thrive in an outdoor environment. “I often chat with their teachers and chaperones into the night as they share about the changes they've seen in their students,” Linnea says. “My role as an evening manager provides me the opportunity to see the glow of group energy when schools return from their campfire programs on Thursday nights.”

During our closing circle on departure day, students often share what was most meaningful in their trip, both their connections to the land and to each other. It is an honor and a delight to be a part of their journey.
Linnea Joy Pierson, NatureBridge Environmental Science Educator, Yosemite

Linnea sums up her experience with gratitude: “I am grateful to have a job where I can make a difference. I am grateful to Jen Kidder (Olympic Campus Director) for being my Yosemite Institute educator in 2006. I am grateful for the many coworkers and supervisors who have inspired me to be a better version of myself.” We at NatureBridge are grateful for the many educators and staff who make these experiences possible and allow us to continue to live our mission to introduce students to the science and wonder of the natural world.

Linnea Joy Pierson in Yosemite
Linnea Joy Pierson conducting field science in Yosemite

Photos courtesy of Linnea Joy Pierson

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