Ohio Certified Volunteer Naturalist

Welcome to the Ohio Certified Volunteer Naturalist Program

The OCVN program is a research-based education program of The Ohio State University offered in partnership with several host locations, such as, park districts and various environmental organizations .  The OCVN progam emphasizes hands-on natural resource and environmental education coupled with volunteer service. Participants in the OCVN program receive 40 hours of combined classroom and field instruction. Upon completing the OCVN course, participants provide 40 hours of volunteer service at any Ohio organization with a compatible program mission.  To get started, click on the Find a Course tab above.  If you cannot find a course close to you, please contact the state OCVN program coordinator, Anne Baird, at baird.41@osu.edu
After course completion, OCVNs typically volunteer in the following service categories:  Education/Interpretation & Outreach, Citizen Science, Land Stewardship, and Program Support.  See 'About Us' for more details. 


  1. Photo credits: Pat Biliter

    Friday, June 8, 2018 OCVN Conference: At The Edge: Protection, Restoring and Interpreting Ohio's Unique Natural Areas

    Dec 13, 2017

    Welcome to The Holden Arboretum’s 3,600 acres of woody plant collections, grasslands, mature forests and miles of beautiful walking trails. We are delighted to host Friday’s evening activities for the 2018 OCVN State Conference. Our first day activities include some spectacular hikes through some of the most unusual natural areas of northeast Ohio, followed by a herbivore and carnivore friendly BBQ and social hour, in turn followed by opportunities to explore our grounds.
  2. Butterfly House at Beech Creek Gardens, Alliance, Ohio

    Jun 28, 2017

    The Butterfly House at Beech Creek Gardens in Alliance is short of volunteers for the season. Contact Amy Barr for more information by leaving a message in her voice mail at 330-639-9157.

    All "Docent" (volunteer) shifts at the Butterfly House are:

    10:00am to 1:00pm or 1:00-4:00pm, Monday-Saturday

    12:00-2:30pm or 2:30-5:00pm, Sundays

    Summer season is June 12 to September 17

  3. City of Kettering Art Camp

    City of Kettering Volunteer Opportunities

    Jun 6, 2017

    The City of Kettering Habitat Nature Center and Rosewood Arts Center hosts several summer camps and special events that need volunteers through August 4, 2017.  Contact Brittany Davis, Assistant Volunteer Administrator for the City of Kettering, to volunteer and complete a background check.  The Adult Volunteer Application can be downloaded to complete at