About Us

The Humans in Nature (HIN) Project combines applied research with outreach efforts to connect individuals of all ages to the natural environment.  Researchers and students from the University of Illinois and San Jose State University provide stories of why individuals and families spend time in nature, video clips of parents and experts, and research-based information, breaking news, and commentary.

The HIN Project focuses on raising awareness of the benefits of nature to individual health and family relationships, and on inspiring people of all ages to #GetOutside. You can learn more about our staff and interns by clicking on their pictures below.

Project Staff

Dr. Aaron Ebata
Dr. Dina Izenstark

Spring 2023 Interns

Fall 2022 Interns

Previous Staff and Interns

Çağla Giray
Cagla Giray
Ananya Shrestha
Julianna Rogowski
Jessica Phillips
Jessica Phillip
Kajal Patel
Kajal Patel
Caroline Moulis
Michelle Cheung
Cherish Recera
Kathryn Smith
Jennifer Long
Jennifer Long
Jacob Morrow
Rachel Fox
Graciella Abbey
Adrianna Glissen
Maya Kusch
Abeer Misbahuddin
Brendan Murney
Sophie Schaffer
Sophia Mora-Fitzgerald
Daisy Patino
Lizzy Lasota
Monica Contreras


Research was supported by the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture, Hatch project 1007220.

Outreach and Engagement is supported by University of Illinois Extension, in furtherance of Cooperative Extension work, Acts of May 8 and June 30, 1914, in cooperation with the US Department of Agriculture by the Director, Cooperative Extension Service, and University of Illinois.

For general inquiries:

Dr. Aaron T. Ebata