Morgan Watkins: Week 8 Recap
These past eight weeks have taught me a lot about what it takes to be a wildlife researcher. You must be organized, well-prepared, and able to apply critical thinking skills to solve problems during the research process. You also must be willing to put in a lot of work in the field regardless of the weather and spend a lot of time sifting through the data you collect. I learned a lot about time management and how to prioritize what’s necessary since we had such a short time period to conduct research. I also learned a variety of new skills including how to use GPS and a compass, how to conduct vegetation surveys, and how to work camera and sound traps.
This past week we finalized our research paper, finished our PowerPoint presentation, and added the last touches to our poster. It was fun getting to display our results and cool pictures in a more creative way for people to see. Presenting in front of people wasn’t difficult for me because I’ve spent the last eight weeks learning about my topic so I was very knowledgeable. The challenging parts included all of the stress of fitting a project into eight weeks and trying to work well as a group, especially when there were differences in availability and research goals. While I don’t think I will be pursuing a career in research, I will always remember the valuable information and lessons I’ve learned from the opportunity!