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Michelle Ashkin

Instructor | Pre-College Programs

Michelle Ashkin is the Founder and President of  Voices for Urban Wildlife Inc., an educational non-profit based in NYC. Her passion for protecting wildlife has taken her on expeditions to Hawaii to study damaged coral reefs, Baja California to collect data on endangered sea turtles, and New Jersey to study migratory shorebirds and threatened bobcats. Her mission—to inspire others to advocate for animals and the environment—has been the driving force behind her work. Michelle was a founding teacher at the High School for Environmental Studies, the first of its kind in New York, and later went on to become the founding principal of the Academy for Conservation and the Environment. Prior to starting her non-profit, Michelle was the Co-Director of Education at the Wild Bird Fund, a nonprofit wildlife rehabilitation center in Manhattan. Her interest in animal sentience has inspired her to delve into the science of ethology and to incorporate humane education into all of her curricula. Michelle holds a master’s degree in education from New York University and a master’s in conservation biology from Columbia University. She is a licensed New York State wildlife rehabilitator and advocates for animals through legislative change.