Monica Nissen Receives National Award

Monica Nissen, local Nelson resident and Director of Wildsight’s education programs, was awarded a prestigious national award in Canmore last week—the 2015 Canadian Network for Environmental Education and Communication Award of Excellence.

Monica’s passion for the wilderness and her gift for teaching drew her into the field of environmental education where she has worked both inside and outside the classroom for the past 20 years.

Besides her role with Wildsight, Monica is also a teacher-on-call in School District #8, and an instructor in the UBC West Kootenay Teacher Education Program.  She serves on the Board of Directors for the Columbia Basin Environmental Education Network (CBEEN), is a Wild BC facilitator and member of a committee that recently provided resources and input to the Ministry of Education on the new BC curriculum.

Monica incorporates innovation in everything that she does. Through her work with Wildsight, she has played a major role in connecting over 60,000 kids to their wild backyards. Using a hands-on, inquiry-based approach that embraces community, connection and a sense of place, the programs she leads are not only inspiring, but also transformative.

“The best part of my job is actually being out there with the kids, watching those ‘Aha!’ moments happen. I love seeing the kids discover a love for nature and an appreciation for natural systems. It’s magical,” says Nissen.