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Northern Naturalist Certificate

Explore the natural environment — water, shorelines, woods, rolling landscapes, dunes, plentiful trees, birds, wildflowers, and wildlife are part of what makes this “up north” region so remarkable!

Take your interest and engagement to a new level by earning a continuing education Northern Naturalist Certificate. You can increase your knowledge for personal enjoyment, volunteer work, or employment, all while exploring the natural environment through classroom and hands-on field experience.

courses offered this semester

  • Entomology for the Naturalist
  • Botany Tour of Port Oneida
  • Aquatic Insects and Water Quality
  • Wild Mushroom Identification Basics
  • Glacial Erratics of Pelizarri
  • Fall Mushroom Foray at Grass River
  • Identifying Fall Mushrooms
  • Interpretation and Environmental Education
  • Birds Up Close
  • Michigan Mammals Up Close
  • Signs of River Otters & Other Elusive Animals

Different courses are offered each semester, and on a schedule so that the program can be completed in two years (likely sooner, if desired). And there is no time limit to complete the program. Register now by selecting your desired class from this list of all LIFE Academy classes » 

View Certificate Requirements here »

Enrollment and costs

It's easy and free to enroll; simply indicate your interest by filling out and sending in a brief enrollment form (PDF) »

Once enrolled, records will be kept for each certificate course you complete, and we'll help you follow your progress through the program.

Cost of the program varys according to the number and cost of the selected courses. Most courses range from $49 to $125. Payment is made at the time of registration for each course.


The instructors are experienced academic and area professionals with backgrounds in science, education, and the environment. Class time includes instruction and active learning; many include field trips.

For more information

We are happy to discuss this exciting program with you in greater detail. For more information, please call the Extended Education office at (231) 995-1700 or

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