Instructors

DAVE SCOTT

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Dave Scott is the co-founder and a lead instructor at Earth Native Wilderness School. Dave found a lifelong love for the nature as a young child exploring Texas’ wild places with his brother, Michel. As a teenager, a passion for wilderness survival skills and self-reliance was kindled while he was involved with his county’s local search and rescue team.

After spending 5 years in the US Army, Dave began pursuing his true passions full time, studying wilderness survival, wildlife tracking, youth and adult mentoring,naturalist studies, and sustainable living skills at wilderness schools across the country. Dave has been involved in Environmental Education since 2003 and, in addition to Earth Native Wilderness School, has instructed at several wilderness schools across the country including the Wilderness Awareness School and Alderleaf Wilderness College. Dave is currently one of only 15 individuals in North America qualified as a Track and Sign Specialist through the Cybertracker Conservation evaluation system, an international standard for gauging and enhancing in-field knowledge of wildlife behavior and track and sign identification.  

Dave is the co-author of Bird Feathers: A Guide to North American Species and is currently working toward his Master’s Degree in Environmental Education. As an educator, Dave’s passion is to help his students reconnect with the natural world through wildlife tracking, increased sensory awareness, wilderness survival skills, and the development of a strong sense of place.


MICHEL ORION SCOTT

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Michel Orion Scott is the co-founder and a lead instructor at Earth Native Wilderness School. Michel spent most of his youth exploring the wooded areas of central Texas where he was born and raised. After earning a degree in film from the University of Texas, Michel went on to crew, direct, and produce numerous successful films that have been screened and distributed all over the world.

After 12 years in the film business, Michel has never lost touch with his childhood love for the nature and continues to use his career in film as a vehicle to learn from native cultures in various locations of the earth.  From Botswana to Bolivia, Namibia to Mongolia and many places in-between, Michel has studied with and been deeply inspired by the way of life of the indigenous peoples that he has been fortunate enough to spend time with.  It is with great humility that Michel passes on this wisdom to those who seek it. And he sees it as a great honor to learn much in the process from those who listen and share his passions.


GUEST INSTRUCTORS


MARCUS REYNERSON 

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Marcus Reynerson has lived close to the natural world throughout his life and some of his earliest memories include hunting and fishing in the muggy marshes and pine forests of south Louisiana. Thanks to a childhood of outdoor recreation, Marcus got an early start working in the environmental education field. After leading youth on backpacking trips during college, he earned a degree in Environmental Studies from Miami University in Oxford, OH.

Marcus went on to serve as a conservation programs directorfor Philmont Scout Ranch in Northern New Mexico and then as a lead naturalist at an outdoor education center in Southern California. He was drawn to Washington from Louisville, Kentucky, to attend the Anake Outdoor School in 2005 and followed up with a second year as an Apprentice Instructor with the that program. In addition to working as a Guest Instructor at Earth Native Wilderness School, he is a full time Instructor for the Anake Outdoor School at the Wilderness Awareness School in Washington state. Marcus enjoys backpacking, storytelling, fishing, playing music and singing, and any time spent near the ocean. Marcus is currently qualified as a track and sign specialist through the Cybertracker Conservation international evaluation system.


MICHELLE VAN NAERSSEN

Growing up traveling around the world, Michelle found a sense of home in nature wherever she was.  From swinging on rainforest vines and exploring wild gems in urban metropolises, to watching deer and collecting animal bones in the Pennsylvanian hardwood forests, she developed a strong sense of adventure and curiosity for the many ways humans connect to their landscapes. This interest has continued throughout her life, leading her to earning a BA in Human Ecology from Wesleyan University in 2001.  

Since then she has enriched her skill sets through four years of residential construction, apprenticing with a medicinal herbalist in Maine, and learning and teaching a broad range of naturalist studies, wilderness survival skills, and regenerative land design.

For twelve years she has been consistently drawn to work with youth and adults to find their gifts and enrich their lives through nature connection.  On land and at-sea, she has taught as an environmental educator in many schools across the country, including co-founding a nature-based education and rites-of-passage home schooling program for teen girls.

As a naturalist, she has contributed to research for NOAA, the US Navy and natural resource management organizations. A graduate of the Wilderness Awareness School's Anake Outdoor School, its instructor apprentice program, and the Wildlife Tracking Intensive, she is Level III Track and Sign qualified through the CyberTracker Conservation international evaluation system. Michelle enjoys riding horses, wooden boat building, playing music and singing, learning bushcrafts and making pie.






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