Cleveland - Euclid native and Shaker Heights resident Monica Marshall has been named outdoor and environmental manager -- a new position -- at Boys & Girls Clubs of Cleveland.
After high school, Euclid native Monica Marshall went to Alaska to study glaciers. Now she is back home showing kids in the inner city how much they can learn about nature in their own back yards.
Marshall has been named outdoor and environmental manager for Boys & Girls Clubs of Cleveland, a new position in which she will oversee nature- and environmental-based initiatives at the Clubs and coordinate programming at the Morgana Bluffs Nature Preserve and Learning Center. The preserve, set to open Oct. 18, is locate next to BGCC’s Broadway Club.
She previously worked at Lake Erie Science & Nature Center and at Footpath Foundation, where she helped run the Footpath Nature Club sessions at Clubs in Cleveland and Lorain County.
“My main thing is getting kids excited about exploring nature,” says Marshall, who lives in Shaker Heights.
The 2011 Euclid High School graduate surprised just about everyone when she decided to attend Alaska Pacific University, a small liberal arts college in Anchorage. “I wanted to study glaciers,” Marshall says with a smile. “I found out pretty quickly that glaciers are hard to study.”
But the university’s focus on hands-on learning was a perfect fit for Marshall.
“I believe that is the best way for people to learn,” she says. She did just that, helping start farms, working closely with Native Alaskans and becoming an activist in efforts to protect natural resources, including the sockeye salmon fishery threatened by a proposed copper and gold mine.
Marshall, who became known on campus as “the green girl,” graduated with a double major in environmental studies and psychology before moving back to Cleveland. At LESNC and Footpath Foundation, she learned how to prepare lessons for kids studying nature and teach them.
In her “spare” time, Marshall enjoys bowling – “I’m legit,” she says – birding and playing guitar.
Her father, who works for the Cleveland Municipal School District, and mother live in the same Euclid home the family has owned for decades. Her twin sister, Monique, works for the U.S. Postal Service.
Boys & Girls Clubs of Cleveland provides safe, fun places for kids ages 6-18 after school at 13 locations throughout the city, focusing on healthy lifestyles, academic success and character development. Each day, an average of about 1,000 kids go to the Clubs. BGCC is a branch of Boys & Girls Clubs of Northeast Ohio, which also includes Clubs in Akron, Lorain County and Erie County.
Photo courtesy of Boys and Girls Clubs of Cleveland
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