NOW June 13, 2019
Melissa B. Wilson, A.L.M and M.S. is an active conservationist and environmentalist who happily lives in paradise (the U.S. Virgin Islands) working to create STEM career pathways and networks for Caribbean students. As a former evangelical, a current climate activist, gay ally, and descendant of the Bohemian Reformation (the first Protestant Reformation) she speaks about faith, life, ecology, and our current political climate on her blog www.ecotheologist.com. She graduated from Harvard University in May 2019 with a Masters of Liberal Arts in Extension Studies-Sustainability and won the Harvard Dean’s Top Prize for Best Thesis in Sustainability. Her conservation research about wilderness, reaching Half-Earth, and STEM education can be found at www.melissawilson.net.
BEFORE June 13, 2015
When I was a child I had an old orange sleeping bag. Many nights under the stars were spent in that sleeping bag and there I perceived my smallness in the universe. The daytime adventures that followed, showed me the diversity and relationships in the natural world. I stood in wonder of the stature of the Redwoods, and the delicateness of the poppy blooms. I marveled at the depth of the Grand Canyon, and the ever-changing shoreline of Laguna Beach. I watched sea otters pry open studded urchins, and gawked at eagles circling volcano calderas. In the middle of nature, I understood the interconnectedness of all beings and the beauty of diversity. As Shakespeare eloquently states, “One touch of nature makes the whole world kin” and as a small child I experienced that all things were tied to me and I to all things.
Today I am an Instructor of Natural Science in both the Environmental Science program and Outdoor Education department at Montreat College. I earned my Natural Resource Management Certificate from Harvard University and both my Bachelor of Science and Master of Science in Environmental Education from Montreat College. I am currently an working on a second masters in Harvard University's Master of Liberal Arts in Sustainability. My work on “Green Play and Attention Deficit & Hyperactivity Disorder” has been presented at the Richard Louv’s Children & Nature Network International Conference and at the Environment and Design Research Association’s (EDRA) Research Symposium.
I believe that moving towards a sustainable future will take all of us, and that the evangelical community and the scientific community need to have some deep heart to hearts. May we dream of a “new world” where humans and environment co-exist harmoniously and where God is more fully understood through those relationships.