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Igniting the Passion for High School Nature Photography- NANPA Foundation

By November 2, 2015No Comments

 

I collect caterpillars at one of my field sites in California, using a 'beat-sheet' - a simple tool used for collection of insects on plants. © Moria Robinson

I collect caterpillars at one of my field sites in California, using a ‘beat-sheet’ – a simple tool used for collection of insects on plants. © Moria Robinson

Lifelong friendships – Opened my eyes to a diversity of perspectives – Inspiring – Everlasting impact – Remarkable environment – Cemented my passion for protecting the environment – Drastically changed the way I approach photography

According to past participants of the NANPA High School Scholarship Program (NHSSP), these words and phrases above describe their experience in the program.

In July, ten more students will get to experience the same community and learning opportunities as they participate in NANPA’s 2016 program in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

Combining classroom and field-based instruction, students will have the chance to improve their nature photography skills, learn about NANPA, meet industry professionals, and gain an appreciation of the Smoky Mountains’ rich natural history.

The program is based at the Great Smoky Mountains Institute at Tremont (GSMIT), a nonprofit resident environmental education center in the heart of the national park. Participants are selected through a competitive application process that opens on November 20. Scholarship recipients are responsible for a $150 registration fee and their transportation to/from Knoxville, TN.

This image of two caterpillars is of an uncommon color morph of a lonely little moth - Drepanulatrix falcataria. The caterpillars are feeding on a plant (Ceanothus jepsonii) endemic to serpentine soil - a unique soil type in California. © Moria Robinson

This image of two caterpillars is of an uncommon color morph of a lonely little moth – Drepanulatrix falcataria. The caterpillars are feeding on a plant (Ceanothus jepsonii) endemic to serpentine soil – a unique soil type in California. © Moria Robinson

All other program costs including events, lodging, food, local transportation, and photo instruction are covered by the NANPA Foundation, a 501(c)(3) charitable organization.

Seeing the different results that we students could create while working the same area was eye-opening. After the first shoot when we shared our pictures, I was astounded by how many different shots there were among the group that looked nothing alike. I also learned more about post-processing from the instructors, and the quality of my LR-edits when up significantly.” – Johan Doornenbal, 2011 NHSSP participant

Program Highlights

  • Photography Field Trips
  • Biodiversity Education
  • Classroom Instruction
  • Group Project
  • Pro for the Day

The structure of NHSSP encouraged a unique degree of contact and communication between high school participants and adults across a range of careers. I can remember meeting one woman who was both a wildlife and cultural photographer, as well as an advocate for human rights and development around the world. She spoke to us as though we were junior colleagues and capable of following any of the paths we were exposed to at NANPA.” – Moria Robinson, 2006 NHSSP Participant

High school participants have gone on to have a number of varied careers – some including photography, some not. Here’s a sampling of what former NHSSP students are now doing:

  • Environmental Photojournalist
  • Fashion Photographer
  • Accountant
  • Owner, Jewelry Design Business
  • Wildland Firefighter
  • Filmmaker
  • Adjunct Professor of Photography
  • Captain in the US Army Special Forces
  • Full Time Nature/Conservation Photography
  • Cinematographer
  • Information Technology Professional
  • Owner, Photography Business

Help Make the 2016 Program Possible

NHSSP has been life-changing for many students since the NANPA Foundation began supporting the program in 1997. It has helped create another generation of nature photographers and enthusiasts who truly embrace an awareness of and appreciation for nature through photography.

Consider making a tax-deductible gift to NANPA Foundation to bring in 10 more students for an inspiring and everlasting experience. Through December 4th, the Foundation is running a campaign to raise $10,000 for the 2016 program. Visit our campaign site and invest in the future of nature photography.

 Online fundraising for High School Student Scholarship Program