My name is Lauren Scull and I’m the Director of Education here at The Nature Institute. I joined TNI in June of 2021. My degree is in Ecotourism & Adventure Travel and my background is in environmental education. While I’m an Ohio native, my work has taken me to Michigan, Missouri, and now Illinois! I currently live in the St. Louis area with my husband and daughter. 

My environmental education career started at The Wilds in Cumberland, OH. I drove a 32 passenger open air bus through pastures of endangered species while wearing my Brittany Spears headset, giving interpretive tours. Since then, I’ve worked at several zoos, a nature center in Michigan, and a wolf center in Missouri. In my 10 years of working with children, I’ve served as an Educator, Zoo Interpreter, Assistant Camp Director, Camp Counselor, Junior Volunteer Coordinator, and Preschool Art & Science Teacher, just to name a few. I have numerous years of experience designing environmental education programs, as well as teaching them. 

Jumping headfirst into camp season at TNI, I was excited to see the community that has been built here. Many of our summer camp staff started off as campers here and have grown through the ranks. There are not many places that hold onto people so long, which really speaks to the impact that The Nature Institute makes! 

At the end of a long camp day, you’ll find kids covered in mud, wet from either sweat or water games, and happy. They spend the day discovering salamanders out in the creek, admiring cicadas that landed on a bench, and learning all about the animals and plants that live here at the preserve. It’s been amazing to be a part of such an enriching experience!


As we’ve moved into the fall, we’ve been thrilled to introduce new programs: Kids Night Out, Yoga + Hike, and Scout Badge Days. We’re currently working on revitalizing our field trip programs, as well as our tried and true TNI staples, like Knee High Naturalist and Discovery Nature Club. We are working hard to ensure the best possible experience for all of our guests!

Have an idea for a program? I’m always open to suggestions! Shoot me a message at