Summertime Science — The Nature Conservancy in Washington



Q: What was your favorite part of helping the Science Team with their research?

A: Eileen Arata

The best part about helping the Science Team was by far getting to know all its members. Everyone was extremely welcoming and helpful at every turn, whether we worked with them directly or not. They took the time to explain their projects and get me excited about realms of environmental science that I didn’t even know existed before. If I had to get more specific than just the entire summer, I would say the wildlife study in Ellsworth was my favorite project to help with. This was my first time doing a wildlife study from camera collecting, photo tagging, all the way through to data analysis. It gave me unmatched experience to do wildlife research in the future. Speaking of unmatched experiences, I would like to specifically mention our direct supervisors, Ailene Ettinger, Michael Case, and Maia Murphy-Williams for making this summer so educational and memorable. I look forward to seeing all of the Science Team’s future projects aid in the conservation of Washington State.

A: Stephanie Schmid

The Washington TNC Science Team is truly a wealth of knowledge and every opportunity I had to benefit from that was truly appreciated. My favorite part of helping the Science Team was getting to help with so many different research projects in one summer. This experience has really helped me to find my footing in my new career in ecology. As an untraditional undergraduate / post-baccalaureate student who moved into science from a career in the art world, I’ve felt at times I was playing catch up and I was behind in some way. This experience has eased some of those anxieties and has given me a better idea of what research I’m interested in pursuing, what skills I will need moving forward in ecology and what to expect as a working research scientist. I would like to thank Ailene Ettinger, Michael Case, and Maia Murphy-Williams for their mentorship and guidance this summer. This summer internship with TNC has been so enriching. I am forever grateful!


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