Connecting people with nature in Ontario's Mississippi Valley

2019 MVFN Members’ Night and Annual General Meeting

IMPORTANT NOTE:  Start time is 7:00 PM!

The 2019 Mississippi Valley Field Naturalists’ Members’ Night and Annual General Meeting will be held on May 16 from 7:00 to 9:00 p.m. The meeting will start promptly at 7:00 p.m., instead of our usual 7:30, to allow some of our Young Naturalists to participate in Members’ Night prior to the AGM.

MVFN Members’ Night

7:00 Opening, Show and Tell                                                 Ken Allison
7:10 Presentation of CB Nature Bursary recipients                Michael McPherson
7:20 Presentation of Youth Summit Sponsorship                  Tineke Kuiper
7:30 Young Naturalists                                                           Patty McLaughlin
7:45 Previous CB Bursary Recipient                                      Laura Symon
7:55 Previous ON Youth Summit & CB Bursary Recipient     Brenda Boyd
8:00 – 8:10 Leg stretch

8:15 MVFN Annual General Meeting

1. Call to order                                                                      Ron Williamson
2. President’s remarks and committee reports                      Linda McCormick
3. Financials                                                                           Jim Atack
4. Nominating Committee Report                                          Jim Atack
5. Remarks of new president and introduction                       Pat Enright
of 2019/20 Board members
6. Other business
7. Adjournment

The AGM is a very important function in the life of any organization, so we hope you can stay and take part in learning about the affairs of MVFN during this past year. You will have an opportunity to vote on the selection of the new Board of Directors for 2019/20, the 2019/20 budget, and other policies and reports.

Date: Thursday, May 16th, 2019

Time: Doors open at 6:30, presentations start at 7:00, and the Annual General Meeting starts at 8:15.

Place: Almonte United Church Social Hall, 106 Elgin Street, Almonte

All MVFN members are welcome.

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Cliff Bennett Nature Bursary 2019

Cliff Bennett Nature Bursary

The Cliff Bennett Nature Bursary is offered annually to assist graduating high school students who will pursue post-secondary studies in a field related to the nat-ural environment. One or more bursaries of $1000 will be awarded each year to students from our area.

Information on the bursary awards program is usually updated in the Fall, so students are aware and can consider the awards as they begin to complete applications for post-graduate study after high school. Application deadline is May 1. Recipients are announced at MVFN’s Annual General Meeting in late May.

The Bursary is named for Cliff Bennett, a founding member of the MVFN. It was established in 2007 by Cliff’s many friends on his 75th birthday, to honour, with a legacy, his life-long contribution to nature education. To date $16,700 has been awarded to 21 students graduating from high schools in our area who have gone on to studies at colleges and universities across the country.

To be eligible, a student must be graduating from a high school in Lanark County or West Carleton (or must confirm individual or family MVFN membership) and be accepted into a college or university program related to nature and the environment. As well as academic achievement, the Committee will consider an applicant’s involvement in issues related to the natural environment. Previous recipients have demonstrated and actively promoted environmental awareness through school projects and volunteering in their communities.

Past winners of the Cliff Bennett Nature Bursary Award have pursued post-secondary studies in ecosystem and resource management, environmental sciences and engineering, marine biology and zoology. Others have followed their passion in environmental stewardship by studying fish and wildlife management or bio-technology.

Application forms are available from student service offices at area high schools, or here at mvfn.ca.

2019 Application Form

For further information, students may contact Michael Macpherson, Chair of the Cliff Bennett Nature Bursary Awards Committee at

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Congratulations to local students awarded nature bursaries in spring of 2018

2018 Cliff Bennett Nature Bursary Award Winners

UPDATE NOVEMBER 2018: Information and 2019 Application Forms for high school students currently in their final year of high school and considering college or university programs for 2019-2020 can find 2019 CLIFF BENNET NATURE BURSARY APPLICATIONS FORMS posted here.

In May 2018, the Mississippi Valley Field Naturalists’ Cliff Bennett Nature Bursary Committee awarded bursaries of $1000 to three graduating high school students, Sophie Anderson, Kaitlyn Johnson, and Shaily Walker. In addition, as part of a pilot project, continued bursaries of $500 were awarded to the two bursary award winners from 2017, Makayla Giles, and Andrew Van Campen.

“I am very pleased to learn about the interests and ambitions of these fine students, and hope that this award may help and encourage young people today to become environmental leaders tomorrow” said Cliff Bennett. “I consider it an investment in our environmental future.”

The successful applicants this year intend to pursue studies in Biology at Ottawa University, Architectural Conservation and Sustainability Engineering at Carleton University, and Ecosystem Management at Fleming College.

Congratulations to all our 2018 winners!

Winners of the 2018 Cliff Bennett Nature Bursary Awards (L-R): Kaitlyn Johnson, Shaily Walker and Sophie Anderson, were presented with their awards by Cliff Bennett at MVFN’s May 2018 meeting in Almonte, ON. photo by Brenda Boyd

About the Cliff Bennett Nature Bursary Fund

The Cliff Bennett Nature Bursary fund, which supports the award program, was established in 2007 by Mississippi Valley Field Naturalists’ members and friends of retired educator Cliff Bennett, for his 75th birthday. Since 2007, more than $16,000 has been awarded to 21 deserving students from high schools in our area.

Previous award winners have continued their education after high school in diverse fields including zoology, ecosystem management, marine biology, environmental sciences and engineering and technology, at both the university and community college level.

For further information about the Cliff Bennett Nature Bursary Awards, please visit the Cliff Bennett Nature Bursary page on MVFN’s website, or contact Michael Macpherson, Cliff Bennett Nature Bursary Committee Chair, at 613-256-3043 or by email at

MVFN encourages interested high school students to visit their school student services offices soon for application forms,  or to seek out more information at our website or by contacting Michael Macpherson, Chairperson for the awards program!

 

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2019 Cliff Bennett Nature Bursary Awards

Click here for pdf 2019 Application Form

The Mississippi Valley Field Naturalists are seeking graduating high school students who want to “make a difference” in meeting the environmental challenges of the future. The Cliff Bennett Nature Bursary is offered annually to assist graduating high school students who will pursue post-secondary studies in a field related to the natural environment.  One or more bursaries of $1000 will be awarded this year to deserving students from our area.

This year the bursary awards program for 2019 is being announced now, so students are aware and consider the awards as they begin to complete applications for post-graduate study after high school.

The Bursary is named for Cliff Bennett, a founding member of the MVFN.  It was established in 2007 by Cliff’s many friends on his 75th birthday, to honour, with a legacy, his life-long contribution to nature education. To date $16,700 has been awarded to 21 students graduating from high schools in our area who have gone on to studies at colleges and universities across the country.

To be eligible, a student must be graduating from a high school in Lanark County or West Carleton (or must confirm individual or family MVFN membership) and be accepted into a 2019-20 college or university program related to nature and the environment.  As well as academic achievement, the Committee will consider an applicant’s involvement in issues related to the natural environment.  Previous recipients have demonstrated and actively promoted environmental awareness through school projects and volunteering in their communities.

Past winners of the Cliff Bennett Nature Bursary Award have pursued post-secondary studies in ecosystem and resource management, environmental sciences and engineering, marine biology and zoology. Others have followed their passion in environmental stewardship by studying fish and wildlife management or biotechnology.

Application forms are available from student service offices at area high schools, or here at mvfn.ca. Click here for the 2019 Application Form The deadline for applications is Wednesday, May 1, 2019.

For further information, students may contact Michael Macpherson, Chair of the Cliff Bennett Nature Bursary Awards Committee at 613-256-3043 or via email to

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2017 Cliff Bennett Nature Bursary Award Winners

The  Cliff Bennett Nature Bursary Award winners for 2017 are Makayla Giles, Almonte and District High School (Almonte) and Andrew Van Campen, Notre Dame Catholic High School (Carleton Place). Both students received these awards in May of this year and are currently pursuing post-secondary studies in an environmental/science related field.

The MVFN Cliff Bennett Nature Bursary Awards are awarded annually to local graduating high school students set to “become the environmental leaders of tomorrow” with acceptance to post-secondary studies in a field related to the natural environment.”

The awards, named for award-winning naturalist, and retired Councillor and educator, Cliff Bennett, were established by Cliff’s friends as a gift to him and to honour his contributions.  Since 2007, more than $11,700 has been awarded to eighteen students, who have gone on to college and university in programs including ecosystem management, environmental engineering, zoology, fish and wildlife management, and others.

If you are a student, or know a student, who wishes to apply for this award next year, please check back next May for 2018 application information.

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