Geoffrey E. Bishop, hails from the bush in North West NSW, Australia. After his childhood spent on his family’s sheep station he went to an agricultural boarding school for five years, and then to University in both Sydney and Melbourne where he studied Horticulture and Landscape Architecture. For the next 10 years he traveled the world, visiting over 80 countries, where he spent most of his time trekking in rural areas, learning cultures and understanding his place in the world. In 1996 Geoffrey started Nature’s Classroom Institute of Wisconsin, Inc. NCI is a residential environmental education program serving schools throughout the Midwest. The Nature’s Classroom Institute program helps students understand the natural environment, participate in ecosystem exploration and study, and work together with their peers and teachers as a community. The program includes activities such as confidence-building, group challenges, historical simulations, scientific explorations, and many more hands-on academic lessons. After developing a strong academic and environmental outdoor based curriculum, he formed Nature’s Classroom Montessori School that blends the core philosophy of Montessori with his environmental principles. The past Board Chair of the Wisconsin Association of Environmental Education (WAEE), he has been honored by WAEE as Wisconsin Non-Formal Educator of the Year. Nature’s Classroom is on 400 acres in the small rural community of Mukwonago, Wisconsin. Geoffrey’s passionate and sustained focus over the past 15 years has been on organics and sustainability in schools while promoting getting children back outdoors and helping adults understand the importance of instinctive play in the natural world.
Mirko Sever is the Director of Outreach – California for Nature’s Classroom Institute. Mirko will be leading the sales, marketing, and development of the EE program in California. Mirko grew up in a Serbian family and received a Master’s degree in Accounting and Finance from University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee. In his free time Mirko works with a number of nonprofits and volunteers with a local hospice organization visiting patients. Mirko is excited to take on the adventure and expand NCI’s teachings and values to students in California.
Brittany, also known as Peaches, cultivated her adventurous spirit and love for the environment as a child on her family’s farm in South Carolina. Her passion for the outdoors led her to Clemson University, where she earned a degree in Wildlife and Fisheries Biology in 2015. In 2017, she worked as a naturalist teaching people of all ages about the ever-changing natural world we live in. This past summer, she led conservation study abroad trips for high school students to Portugal and Botswana. Peaches’ love for various ecosystems has brought her to serve all over the world, from Florida’s coastal ecosystems to African deltas. Her free time is spent exploring the outdoors, photographing wildlife, tending to her garden, or with her nose in a good book.
Before joining the NCI team as an environmental educator, Cristina researched the marine environment and graduated from Western Washington University with a Master’s in marine and estuarine science. Throughout her academic career she combined her research interests with youth education and outreach opportunities. Why? Because to her, science education outside of the lab is just as important as inside the lab. She is an adventurer at heart and is always ready to go outdoors.
Ally was born and raised in central Iowa where she spent many weekends and summer breaks hiking and fishing with family. She started out her Environmental Career working with White Tailed Deer and Tree Swallows in the Midwest while pursuing a Bachelors degree in Biology at Iowa State University. Ally fell in love with how amazing it is to see animals interact with the environment around them and decided to pursue a career where she could help other people understand how awesome the world around us is. She began her career as an environmental educator in 2018 at Don Lee Center in North Carolina and is continuing to pursue her passion for the environment with us! Ally keeps the kids entertained with her outgoing personality and itch to explore new places with them!
Julieta is a new member of the Nature’s Classroom Institute. She attended the University of Redlands, and received a multidisciplinary bachelor’s degree in Geographic Information Systems, Environmental Studies, and Sociology. Her college experience allowed her to be both a student and an educator in the outdoors. After graduation, she pursued her passion of teaching by working as an environmental and spatial educator in many field study education programs in southern California, New Mexico and in the Pacific Northwest. She is excited to start this new journey with Nature’s Classroom, and engage with the students in California.