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Career Services

Internships and Field Placements

Allison Garren ’17

Major(s)

Environmental Science

Hometown

Kenosha, Wis.

Name of Business/Organization

Hawthorn Hollow Nature Sanctuary and Arboretum in Kenosha

Internship Position

Ecologist Intern

Give three words that sum up your internship experience.

Magical, Informative, Exciting

How did you learn about your internship?

“I learned about the internship through people that have worked with Hawthorn Hollow before.”

Describe your internship.

“I am interning under the Ecologist and the duties vary greatly day-to-day. I have worked on their prairie restoration project and weekly I monitor the bluebird boxes on site. I have spent time monitoring the stream erosion in the Pike River and meeting with local watershed restoration project leaders. After we complete the data collection on the Pike River I will continue my research on finding grants in order to help them complete these projects.”

What do you enjoy most about your internship? What are some of the challenges?

“I enjoy most the quiet moments hiking through the forest or walking through the creek; collecting data midsummer in the heat can be hard work but when you look up from the clipboard and there’s five different species of dragonflies hovering over you and sun shimmering through the trees I’m reminded of why I am doing all of this.”

How does your internship fit with your long-term career goals?

“I hope to gain grant writing skills in order to help environmental groups realize the vast amount of funding available to complete their projects. I am also interested in more hands-on restoration work and since Hawthorn Hollow has so many various restoration projects happening this internship is a perfect fit for me to gain hands-on knowledge.”

During your internship search, how did you make yourself stand out to employers?

“I showed my motivation for helping this organization in the past by volunteering my time before funding for an internship was even in the picture.”

What did you find to be the most helpful during your internship search process?

“I found networking the most helpful in my internship search process. I began turning to my professors and brainstorming ideas. They helped me realize that even if an organization does not create a posting for an internship, that you should still reach out and express interest. You never know what kind of opportunities might exist unless you explore all options and ask questions.”

Do you have any tips to share with other students about your experience?

“If you truly want to work in a certain field, do not be afraid to get yourself out there to meet people and express your interest. You can fill out a dozen applications online, but creating a good impression by meeting people that work in your field and volunteering your time will really help you create opportunities for yourself.”

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