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What students say:

"Through Wilderness and Civilization I have gained a vast knowledge of the natural world, communities, society, and many issues involving the environment. From Native Americans to gardening to environmental regulation, I now have a strong understanding of many processes facing the world today. The program planted seeds about how I'd like to live in the future."
~Andrew Henry, Denver, Colorado

College of Forestry and Conservation


Wilderness and Civilization alumni are currently working as wilderness advocates, environmental and outdoor educators, filmmakers, public-land managers, outfitters, researchers, writers, politicians, organic farmers, environmental consultants, and more. An education in Wilderness and Civilization with a minor degree in Wilderness Studies may lead in many directions.

Alumni describe the program


Eric Bergman (1994-1995) is a naturalist for The Nature Conservancy (TNC) along Montana’s Rocky Mountain Front and coordinates the Pine Butte Education Program. His work also includes directing sustainable operations projects for TNC Montana programs. Currently, Eric is cooking up biodiesel for vehicles at the Pine Butte Guest Ranch, which already has a solar array, wind mill and large summer garden. Eric feels fortunate to work with an organization that is proactively facing the landscape conservation challenges of climate change and is also committed to making the appropriate connections between these challenges and human behavior. Eric also enjoys life at large among the human and wild communities along The Front.
Jason Wilmot (1988-1989) is the Executive Director of the Northern Rockies Conservation Cooperative, an organization dedicated to preserving species and ecosystems by providing reliable scientific and policy information, bringing people together to formulate and implement sound, effective conservation policies, and building support from an informed public through education and civic engagement. Visit NRCC's site to learn more about Jason's great work.
Joanna (Tenny) Seibert (2000-2001) grew up in central Arkansas. She recently returned to her roots on Petit Jean Mountain in the Arkansas River Valley. There, she works for the Winthrop Rockefeller Institute as a program coordinator for environmental education in addition to Camp Mitchell, an Episcopal camp and retreat center. In her free time, Joanna enjoys taking classes from belly-dance and banjo to community-raised issues, especially around local food programs. Her favorite activity, by far, is exploring nature with her nieces and nephews.
Jen Kevil (1997-1998) is a Recreation/Wilderness Specialist on the Ketchikan-Misty Fiords Ranger District in the Tongass National Forest. For the past six years, she has been working in Misty Fiords National Monument Wilderness Area running the wilderness kayak ranger program and was recently promoted to her new position. She enjoys working on the complex wilderness management challenges that Alaska faces. When not at work, Jen enjoys getting out on the ocean in her kayak and exploring Southeast Alaska's remote places.

Matthew Houghton (1979) teaches at Shoreline Community College (Seattle) in an award winning program called Career Education Opportunities. This 10-credit class is exclusively for high school dropouts who, if they pass the class, get their college paid for until they are 22. Matt also teaches Human Development classes, and his favorite, Intro to Wilderness Camping.

On the side, Matt is working with others to prevent the city of Seattle from developing an area of public land that has the highest species diversity of any unprotected city property. The area includes nesting cooper's hawk and pygmy owl. Nice work Matt!

Matt lives in Seattle with his wife Lilia and daughter Malia. They enjoy the diversity of the city and still get out in the woods.

After four years teaching field science and assisting with soils research, Francine Farrell (1996-1997) decided to officially become a dirt bagger! She is working on a masters degree in Soil Science at UC Davis and hopes to apply her soils knowledge to restoration issues. To you Fran asks, "Did you know that a handful of soil contains hundred to thousands of nematodes (small round worms) and many carnivous fungi that trap and eat the nematodes?!" While her research focuses on a few small soil organisms, they each have large landscape affects.


Alumni Contact

If you would like to contact fellow alumni, please e-mail your contact information to and indicate the person you would like to reach. We will forward your contact information to them. The Wilderness Institute does not release information. Replying to inquiries is up to those being contacted.

If you would like to update your contact in the alumni records, please send any or all of the following information to

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