Each year the Science Program at RHA welcomes several summer interns to join their research team. Interns help to organize the stream monitoring corps of citizen scientists, conduct biological, habitat and chemical monitoring at sites throughout the Upper Raritan, participate in special research projects, GIS mapping, bird nest box monitoring and stewardship of our preserves. The interns make a valuable contribution to our work and in return they gain broad experience in science, its applications to water resource protection, and the role of environmental non-profits. This year we have four talented (and fun!) science interns we’d like you to meet.
Blair is from Woodbridge, NJ. She graduated in January with a B.S. in Environmental Biology and minor in Statistics from Kean University and before beginning her internship she was working on a study of increasing temperatures on soil at Lawrence Berkeley National Lab in California. In the fall, she will be continuing her education at Stockton University where she will work toward a Master’s in Environmental Science. She plans to become an environmental consultant working in wetlands. About the internship, she says, “I hope to gain more experience in freshwater ecosystems through macro and chemical sampling as well as increasing my communication skills with staff and volunteers. I have really enjoyed going out to our sites across the watershed for biological and chemical monitoring and doing visual assessments. Each site is unique and so beautiful. I’m very happy I’m spending my summer with RHA!”
Kevin is from Bridgewater, NJ. He is a senior at Rutgers University majoring in Applied Environmental Science. His plan is to go for his Master’s after he finishes his undergraduate degree. About his work this summer, he says, “I’m looking to further my understanding about benthic macro-invertebrates and gain more experience in the field while I’m interning here at RHA. What I’ve enjoyed most about working with RHA is helping protect my local watershed.”
Libby is from Short Hills, NJ. She is a rising senior at Hamilton College and is preparing for her year-long hydrology thesis on groundwater nutrients and cyanobacterial blooms to complete her Geoscience major. She plans to become either a hydrogeologist and/or work with communities to build Climate Change Mitigation Plans to foster resilience in the face of climate change related natural disasters. Prior to joining RHA as a summer research intern, she completed a semester abroad in New Zealand. Libby also worked with RHA to improve the butterfly garden at Fairview Farm while she was a high school student. About her work this summer with RHA, she says, “I am most looking forward to gaining more field and laboratory experience as well as a greater understanding of how non-profits operate. I’ve enjoyed spending my summer outside with people who care about our environment and community.”
Garrett is from Mount Arlington, NJ. He is a student at Paul Smiths College studying Fisheries and Wildlife Science and will be graduating in the fall of 2019 with a Bachelor of Science. He hopes to do fieldwork with a biological focus, possibly going on to graduate school. About his work with RHA he says, “I hope to gain valuable field experience and meet many professionals in the field from this internship. I’m really enjoying working on our bluebird box project, and kestrel box monitoring project.”