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Registration Open for 2017 Experience Your Smokies Tennessee

Registration Open for 2017 Experience Your Smokies Tennessee

As the 2016 Experience Your Smokies Tennessee class graduates, applications for the Experience Your Smokies Tennessee Class of 2017 are currently being accepted.

The Experience Your Smokies Tennessee 2016 graduation event, which occurred on Saturday, Feb. 4, 2017 marks the sixteenth year of Experience Your Smokies leadership classes in Tennessee. The program, which is a collaborative endeavor between the Great Smoky Mountains National Park’s Resource Education Division and Tennessee Gateway Communities, provides a unique perspective on the Great Smoky Mountains with behind-the-scenes, hands-on educational experiences related to the activities and issues within the park.

“The EYS (Experience Your Smokies) sessions have been amazingly educational and enlightening,” said 2016 Class graduate Jerry Cunningham. “As part of the 2016 class, my wife and I have gained a tremendous amount of insight and a deeper appreciation into the many different facets of the Smokies. We have been particularly impressed with the expertise and dedication of the park rangers and personnel.”

Cunningham and twenty-four other members of the 2016 class of Experience Your Smokies Tennessee enjoyed graduation activities held at the Great Smoky Mountains Institute at Tremont. Presenting at the event were Superintendent Cassius Cash of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Chief of Resource Education Nigel Fields, Supervisory Park Ranger Mike Maslona, and Chair of Experience Your Smokies Tennessee Ray Colclough.

Each year, Experience Your Smokies class members learn about topics including the Park’s air quality, historic preservation, experiential education programs, fisheries, wildlife management and dealing with the threats of exotic species. Class participants are selected based on their leadership within the community, interest in the national park and commitment to stewardship.  This is the sixteenth year that Experience Your Smokies classes have completed a service project that benefits the national park.

Applications for the Experience Your Smokies Tennessee Class of 2017 are currently being accepted.   For more information on the program and how to apply for this year’s class, visit www.ExperienceYourSmokies.org. The deadline to submit an application is February 24. You can also learn more about Experience Your Smokies Tennessee by visiting www.facebook.com/EYSTennessee.

Experience Your Smokies Tennessee class graduates

Pictured are members of the 2016 Class of Experience Your Smokies Tennessee. The 2016 Experience Your Smokies Tennessee graduation was held on February 4, at the Great Smoky Mountains Institute at Tremont.

Congratulations to the 2016 Experience Your Smokies Tennessee graduating class members:

Donna Alexander, Blount County resident

John Berry, Blount Hearing and Speech

Tonya Campbell, Great Smoky Mountain Institute at Tremont

Janis Cunningham, Blount County resident

Jerry Cunningham, Blount County Executive

Janet Desprez, Burlington Brands Sevierville

Simon deVente, Alcoa Public Works

Hank Dye, Townsend resident

Becky Gibson, Knoxville resident

Jessica Hill, Photographer

Joe Jernigan, CVS Health, Knoxville

Andy Kerr, Fly Fishing Guide

Jim Kirksey, Dr., Fort Sanders Regional Medical Center

Harry McIntosh, LeConte Reality

Sharon Oldham, Dancing Bear Lodge, Townsend

Mark Oldham, Dancing Bear Lodge, Townsend

Wendy O’Neal, retired Blount County teacher and GSMNP volunteer

Jay Schablik, Delta Airlines

Debbie Slizewski, Blount County resident

Jim Slizewski, Blount County resident

Georgiana Vines, retired writer

Joe Walsh, Knoxville Parks and Recreation

Don Whitted, United Grocery

Leigh Wilson, Wiseware LLC

Dewayne Wilson, Wiseware LLC

 

Feature Photo: Experience Your Smokies TN Chair “Bucky” Colclough (pictured left front) and Great Smoky Mountains National Park Resource Education Chief Nigel Fields (pictured left center) congratulate 2016 graduates during the graduation festivities held at the Great Smoky Mountains Institute at Tremont on February 4. Debbie Slizewski (pictured front) and Jim Slizewski (pictured back right) accept graduation certificates and Park pins.

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