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      Teaming up with Tigers to Attack Nature Deficit Disorder.        
Midwest Region, February 9, 2009
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Recently, the Columbia National Fish and Wildlife Conservation Office teamed up with faculty from the University of Missouri-School of Natural Resources with the goal of providing new educational outdoor experiences to Missouri residents.  Dr. Sonja A. Wilhelm Stanis recently volunteered to assist technician Chris McLeland in the development of new programs, strategies and ideas that would encourage people to become involved in the outdoors as well as learn new skills associated with natural resources conservation. Wilhelm Stanis has utilized her expertise to assist in the development of the 2009 Wonders of Wildlife (WOW) outdoor school in Columbia, MO.  WOW is an outdoor recreation school that offers a wide range of outdoor related courses with varying degrees of difficulty.  WOW provides a foundation for novice outdoor enthusiast to learn a new skill, as well as offer new challenges for those more advanced.  Wilhelm Stanis has assisted in the development of new advertising approaches as well as offering her expert advice in the area of nature deficit disorder.  She has provided guidance in creating a scholarship program that will provide school groups and families the ability to attend WOW, despite financial burdens. 

Dr. Sonja Wilhelm Stanis joined the University of Missouri's School of Natural Resources in August 2008 as a faculty member in the department of Parks, Recreation and Tourism. Her primary work is in the human dimensions of natural resource management with an emphasis in the social psychological aspects of outdoor recreation and recreation resource management. Specifically, her research examines motivations for and benefits of outdoor recreation, constraints to outdoor recreation, the role of parks and other public lands in promoting physical activity and public health, and issues in outdoor recreation relating to diversity and youth.  Originally from Madison, Wisconsin, Wilhelm Stanis came to Missouri from the University of Minnesota where she completed her M.S. and Ph.D. in Natural Resources Science and Management as well as a minor in program evaluation.

Contact Info: Chris McLeland, (573) 823-8375, Christopher_McLeland@fws.gov



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