Nature and Me Scholarship/Contest Program



The Springfield Plateau Chapter of Missouri Master Naturalists is a community service organization whose mission is to engage Missourians in the stewardship of our state’s natural resources through science-based education and volunteer community service.

Not only do we want to pass on to our children the richness and variety of Missouri’s natural resources, but we also want to support students in their growth of the dispositions of caring, curiosity, inquiry, self-reflection, responsibility, and sense of community as these habits relate to the natural world. In this way, we can be assured that they will become good stewards of the land and its resources for the next generation.

One way we can support students to become good stewards is to invite them to write essays for the annual Nature and Me Scholarship/Contest Program and to recognize outstanding submissions.

We are pleased to know that students will be able to apply what they are learning in both language arts and science classes to current, real-world topics and issues.

We are inviting science teachers to partner with our scholarship/contest program. As partners, they would give their students one or more writing assignment(s) each school year that would address a topic appropriate for course content and related to the natural world. Each participating teacher will submit two of the best essays for judging and cash awards/scholarships. We will provide:

  • A teacher guide.

  • A Master Naturalist liaison available to answer questions and support individual teacher needs.

  • Availability of the Master Naturalist Trunks Program for classroom use.

  • A student packet consisting of a student guide, application form, and scoring rubric.

  • A panel of Master Naturalists who will judge all entries and determine recipients of the $1,000 scholarship (grade 12) and $50 awards (grades 5-11).

  • A Master Naturalist representative to present cash awards and scholarships at schools.



Nature and Me $1000 Scholarship Application

Teacher Guide for the Nature and Me $1000 Scholarship Program

Student Guide for the Nature and Me $1000 Scholarship Program

Scoring Rubric for Nature and Me Scholarship Entries


Nature and Me $50 Contest Application (Grades 5-11)

Teacher Guide for the Nature and Me $50 Contest (Grades 5-11)

Student Guide for the Nature and Me $50 Contest (Grades 5-11)

Scoring Rubric for Nature and Me Scholarship Entries

If you have questions please contact Jennifer Ailor ( and/or Kathryn Krudwig (