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College program gets a facelift, hires new ABAC coordinator

COVINGTON, Ga. – Georgia Wildlife Federation has rebranded its college learn-to-hunt program as Academics Afield. 

Just this past semester deer, dove, squirrel and waterfowl programs were hosted at ABAC and UGA. Of those participating in the programs, nearly 70 had never hunted previously, and 67% of those new hunters were female.

“The program is gaining significant traction and honestly we felt like the name was a little bland. We wanted to rebrand the program in a manner that aligned with our vision of not only introducing students to hunting and shooting but also providing them with the social support necessary to continue,” Charles S. Evans, Georgia R3 manager, said.

Thanks to continued support from the National Shooting Sports Foundation, GWF hired Daniel Stout to take over for Parker Gerdes as the ABAC Academics Afield Coordinator. Daniel is pursuing a bachelor’s degree in Natural Resource Management. He is an active member of The Wildlife Society Student Chapter and enjoys volunteering with various other groups. Growing up, he spent the majority of his time outdoors fishing with family and eventually turned to competitive fishing in high school. 

After graduating high school, Daniel enlisted in the U.S Army as an infantryman and served a three-year contract at Fort Riley Kansas. As the academics afield coordinator at ABAC, he is creating programs to introduce students to hunting and the shooting sports that have never had the opportunity to participate.

The Georgia R3 Initiative is a cooperative effort between Georgia Wildlife FederationGeorgia Department of Natural Resources Wildlife Resources DivisionNational Wild Turkey FederationQuality Deer Management Association and Safari Club International.