Hi all! My name is Kayanna Turner (she/her), and I will be a senior in Ecology, Evolution, and Environmental Biology, with minors in Wildlife Science, Classical Studies, and Chemistry, at Purdue this coming fall. I’m from a very small town, think less than 1000 people, in the middle of rural Indiana.
I decided to join this year’s REEU for a variety of reasons. At the beginning of my college career, I was set on getting my bachelor’s degree in general biology and heading to vet school afterwards. However, after taking a break from working in the field of veterinary medicine, I realized that career wasn’t what I wanted for my future. I spent the next few years exploring the many disciplines that biology encompasses and learned that ecology was one of the subjects I found most engaging and interesting, especially after taking multiple classes on the subject. During these classes, I was able to get some experience doing fieldwork via labs, and I absolutely loved how hands-on each lab was. When I learned about the REEU, it sounded like the perfect opportunity to gain more fieldwork experience while learning more about potential careers in natural resources.
During this program, I’m most looking forward to learning all sorts of new field techniques and how to conduct a large-scale study in the field, not just through a research lab. For the REEU program, I am a member of the Streams group with Grace, my undergraduate partner, and Evelyn and Dr. Marisol Sepulveda, our mentors. I am so excited to learn from each of team members and can’t wait to get started creating our research project for this summer!