The Michigan Chapter’s Continuing Education Committee (CEC) had a productive year in 2014. We started things off right with an Intro to ArcGIS 10 for Fisheries & Aquatic Sciences workshop at our annual meeting in Holland on February 24th. The workshop was instructed by Lacey Mason and Danielle Forsyth from the Michigan DNR Institute for Fisheries Research. The workshop attracted 19 participants and received great reviews. A slow summer followed but on October 18th and 19th the CEC struck again with a Fisheries Gear for Students and Young Professionals Workshop in Gaylord. The workshop was instructed by Pat VanDaele, Tim Cwalinski, Wayne Heinzman, and Dan Traynor from the Michigan DNR and Billy Keiper from the Michigan DEQ. We received plenty of interest in the workshop, quickly filling the quota of 15 students plus several more on a waiting list. It was a blustery weekend for the field portion of the workshop but we still managed to have a great time and look forward to holding similar classes in the future. We were in the field again nine days later for a Stream Habitat Restoration at Channel Crossings workshop on October 28th and 29th in Grand Rapids. This time Ralph Reznick and Bethany Matousek from the Michigan DEQ and Chris Freiburger from the Michigan DNR instructed the class of 19 participants.
2015 is again looking to be a good year for continuing education. In late 2014 the CEC sent a survey to the membership to determine its continuing education needs. The subjects which received the greatest interest were non-game fish identification, fisheries statistics, fish population dynamics, fish habitat assessment, and fish population modeling. Based on the results of that survey the CEC is hosting a Statistical Aspects of Sampling Freshwater Fish Populations and Habitats workshop at our annual meeting on January 19th in Bay City. The one-day class will be instructed by Dr. Daniel Hayes from Michigan State University. We are also in the process of planning non-game fish identification and larval fish identification courses for the upcoming year. We don’t have any details on those courses yet but either way I know we’ll have a lot of fun!