We have reached the finish line and what a wild ride it has been. This past week was extremely intense as each group perfected their final presentations. I am very happy with the herps group’s presentation and poster. It looks extremely professional and I am excited to give our presentation.
This past Monday we said goodbye to Nigel as he left to go start his Ph.D program at Brown University. We are extremely proud of him and we know he is going to do great. I am extremely grateful for all the help and guidance Nigel and Dr. Bernal provided to us over the course of the summer. I felt I am a better researcher and scientist because of them.
I loved participating in this program. I found it extremely rewarding to conduct my own research project from start to finish. I made a lot of connections and friendships with the other interns. We experienced challenges as a group, and we overcame them together. We really grew close over the past 8 weeks, and I am going to miss each and every one of them. They made this summer one of the best in my life.
This program helped me figure out which career direction I want to pursue after I graduate. I am more comfortable in my research skills and I want to pursue a masters. However, I do not think I love research so much that I want to pursue a Ph.D program. In addition, I would like to work for a couple of years to gain experience and take a break from schooling. I really enjoyed the extension aspects of this program. I think a career as an extension specialist maybe a good fit for me because it combines my interest in people with my interest in research. This internship provided me with experience that will help me get a job in my chosen career. It provided me with a better understanding of what it takes to be successful in graduate school.
I want to say one last thank you to everyone who made this program possible. The USDA NIFA for funding us. Megan and Dr. Flaherty for organizing the program. Dr. Bernal and Nigel for being wonderful mentors. And the other REEU interns for making my summer wonderful:
-Maggie: The kind-hearted free-spirit
-Alyssa: The sweetest person I have ever met
-Garret: The youngest herp professor in existence
-Avery: The mom who is always there for everyone else
-Mia: Whose personality is as bold as her heart
-Taylor: The confident one who helps others around her grow
-Reece: the calm, cool, and collected
-Emily: Honest and individualistic grandma who loves her knitting
-Jenny: The best bike riding buddy