Carter said students from Science Hill Independent School and a student from Northern Middle School have already pitched in and volunteered at the center as it prepares for the move between locations.
Kinney said although the Liberty Nature Center will be open to volunteers in seventh grade and above, one-on-one interaction with the raptors will be designated to the older students.
Kinney said the excitement is tangible, but he said some details, such as transportation, are still being worked out for those students located in other parts of the county.
“We’re trying to work all the kinks out with that,” said Kinney.
But there is still some time to work out the details — although Kinney and Carter both have their hands full with the transition.
Carter is still working full-time as a SWHS teacher, and Kinney, who worked in the club as a Southwestern student, is a full-time biology student at the University of Kentucky.
“I try to come home about three or four times a week and work on this,” said Kinney, who laughed and said it can be “tough” to balance both.
Kinney is just one in hundreds of students who were affected by their time with the raptor rehabilitation program.
“What I did in high school was exactly what I want to do with the rest of my life,” said Kinney, a 2012 SWHS graduate.
Carter is often visited by former students, and the club’s yearly open house is often a homecoming of sorts for many of her former pupils.
“We have so many who have gone into veterinary school, business — the club is a business, in a way — environmental law, biology ... I want to give (students) that opportunity,” said Carter.
The club is a non-profit organization, but it’s nonetheless a complex one that requires full commitment from students in both caring for the birds and dealing with the public side of things.