The next generation will love fishing, too, and we can thank Gary Williams, Extension educator and Southeast Michigan Urban Natural Resources Outreach coordinator, for having a hand in that. Gary coordinates a program run by the partnership of Michigan State University Extension and the Department of Natural Resources and Environment. This summer, Gary is teaching the basics of fishing to kids from all over Michigan at state parks and recreation areas. Gary believes that to get the kids to enjoy fishing, they need to be successful at it, so he makes sure every participant has the experience of catching a fish named Bubba. To read more about Gary and the work he is doing, click here. Although you may think that catching a fish may not be one of the core life skills that every youth needs in order to succeed in tomorrow’s economy, look at it this way: if every youth has a greater appreciation for the environment around them and the other creatures that share it, we have a better chance of still having vibrant and life-sustaining ecosystems in our Great Lakes, inland lakes and rivers that are so distinctive to Michigan. And if their self-confidence is enhanced by having learned a new skill that can yield some health protein, they’ll be better prepared to learn other skills that can sustain them and Michigan in the future.