CBF and the Maryland
Association of Student
Councils are supporting
each other and the Bay
By Jeff Rogge
cologists use the term symbiosis to refer to
the close relationship that two or more
organisms have with each other. One type of
symbiotic relationship, called mutualism
occurs when organisms interact in a way
that is mutually beneficial. Bees and flowers
have a mutualistic relationship. Flowers
provide nectar to feed bees, and bees transport the pollen to help flowers reproduce.
CBF and the Maryland Association of
Student Councils (MASC) have one of
these win-win relationships.
Three of MASC’s Executive Board—(left to right) Azeezat Adeleke, Charles County Association of
Student Councils President; Mark Ritterpusch, Maryland Association of Student Councils President;
and Evan McIntyre, Allegany County Association of Student Councils President—visited the Merrill
Center to work with CBF’s Education Department to design student leadership training programs.
Green Schools program ( www.maeoe.org),
increasing recycling, and reducing the use of
toxic chemicals on school property.
interest of students and the Bay. Ideas put
on the table included: viral social media
outreach, restoration projects, flash mobs,
and canoe-based leadership workshops.
As this relationship progresses, we keep
discovering areas where CBF and MASC
naturally complement each other. When
MASC’s Anne Arundel
County Chapter organized
a Lobby Day to learn about
local government, its stu-
dent Legislative Affairs
Committee endorsed three
bills and invited CBF to
help teach about lobbying and the environ-
mental significance of the legislation.
CBF knows MASC as a well-organized
group of motivated students who recognize
the importance of the Chesapeake Bay.” “
MASC is a student-run organization, composed of middle and high school leaders
from across the state. They
sponsor training sessions,
advocate for student rights,
hold conferences, and contribute to philanthropies.
When MASC selected CBF
as its Charity of the Year
for 2012, we realized the
potential of this relationship could become
much more and last for years to come.
As Charity of the Year, CBF educators have
traveled across the state delivering work-
shops and presentations to student groups.
Each presentation is part education session
Knowing CBF through field experiences on
education programs, the leadership of
MASC recognized that we could offer their
constituents opportunities in learning, serv-
ice, and leadership training. CBF knows
MASC as a well-organized group of motivat-
ed students who recognize the importance
of the Chesapeake Bay. MASC’s members
have a demonstrated commitment to envi-
ronmental issues, centered around an orga-
nizational platform supporting the teaching
of environmental literacy, promoting the
and part focus group, sharing the ecology
of the Chesapeake and listening to students
share their thoughts and experiences on the
Bay and in local streams and rivers.
Through crabbing, boating, or just kicking
around outside, the youth of this state have
a growing awareness about the environ-
mental legacy they will inherit.
Completing the circle of a mutualistic relationship, CBF invited several members of
the MASC Executive Board to help envision
a student leadership program. Students and
CBF educators worked together to design a
training program that would be in the best
There is another player in this mutualistic
relationship. The Bay itself provides the
inspiration for the MASC students, and in the
exchange will benefit from the projects, advocacy, and stewardship of this enthusiastic,
motivated, and well-informed generation.
Jeff Rogge is a senior manager
for CBF’s Education Department.
He supervises programs in
Maryland, the District of
Columbia, and Pennsylvania.