Promoting Professional Development and Best Practice in EE
Roles at NAAEE:CCC Fellow
Environmental Education Manager
Parks & People Foundation
Sam coordinates environmental education programs at Parks & People Foundation, a Baltimore City nonprofit organization. His work includes guiding urban youth through Baltimore’s 1,200 acre forest—Gwynns Falls/Leakin Park—as well as coordinating service-learning stream restoration projects with middle and high school students and teachers. While at the University of Michigan’s School of Natural Resources & Environment, Sam concentrated on improving community outreach and engagement strategies in the Chesapeake Bay region with the goal of improving water quality. Sam is a believer in self-powered transportation (you’ll see him riding around Baltimore on his bike), and enjoys looking at maps, street art, and, of course, trees! Hailing from Bowers Beach, Delaware, Sam first taught about the biology of the oyster, ecology of wetlands, and 1930s sailing techniques on a restored, 1928 oyster schooner, A.J. Meerwald; serving as an environmental education living classroom for Delaware Bay residents. Sam is dedicated to cultivating environments that bring out the best in people and engaging Baltimore City residents in solving community issues. Sam encourages everyone to visit Baltimore and explore the unique natural and cultural history of the city with him!
Impacts of climate change are already being seen in Baltimore City and urban areas worldwide. Communities and businesses are feeling the effects of these impacts, including continuous flooding in and around Baltimore’s Inner Harbor, the collapse of an entire block of 26th street into a CSX railway, and abnormally hot summer months. The goals of Sam’s project are to engage high school-age youth in understanding climate change related issues and to identify appropriate responses based on what we know about Baltimore. Students will spend a school year investigating the science behind climate change and the challenges and responses unique to Baltimore. Ultimately, students will develop a community action project based on a mitigation and adaptation strategy of their choosing. The goal is to design the project to be scalable, to meaningfully involve youth in addressing climate change throughout Baltimore City, as well as other urban areas.