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I love getting people excited for SCA, but I also love visiting members in the field and checking out first hand all the amazing things our members do.
In early June, I had the privilege of visiting five different interns in the field in PA/NJ and learning about their internships. I visited members involved in two of our cool special initiatives: Aramark Sustainability Interns and Cultural Resources Discovery Internship Program.
SCA has teamed up with ARAMARK—a leader in food services, facilities management, and uniform and career apparel—to offer a broad spectrum of hands-on environmental internships at university, business and national park sites nationwide. Placements may include energy and water conservation, sustainable procurement, composting, facilities and waste management, and much more. These internships are designed to provide a career pathway into traditional operational roles throughout ARAMARK, where environmental expertise is of increasing importance.
Career Discovery Internship Program (CDIP) was created in partnership with Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) to help prepare the next generation of wildlife professionals and managers by introducing culturally and ethnically diverse college freshman and sophomores to conservation careers in the USFWS. CDIP students are assigned to a national wildlife refuge for a summer of hard work and experiential education, and learn about topics like public relations, invasive species, and resource conservation.
Here is a very quick synopsis of my visits:
I visited Kristin at the Steinberg Conference Center. She will be working at this first-class facility to figure out ways to continue to reduce their carbon footprint, including setting up a composting program. I took a tour of the facility and learned about many of the special processes they already have in place, like no plastic bottles of water (they have water taps everywhere and give guests water bottles), installation of greener lighting fixtures, timers to turn off lights when not in the room, and recycling of old furniture. Kristin also gets to work with UPenn on different sustainability initiatives on their campus.
I visited Bill at the Skillman NJ site. He will be working to help get the Green Restaurant re-certification, sustainable food tracking and procurement, and he gets to work in the garden on site. I took a tour of the facility and was really impressed with the healthy food options they have and all the hands on projects that Bill gets to oversee. There were also baby rabbits near the garden!
I visited Shanita at the Heinz Wildlife Refuge in Philadelphia. This is located right next to the airport and is a hidden gem in the city. I took a tour of the refuge and she pointed out all the animals there, plus the projects she hopes to work on this summer, like give tours, install new bird feeders, work with invasive plants, and learn as much about the refuge as possible. I saw her answer a question first hand from visitors, even though it was only her first week there!
I visited Yanique at the Cape May National Wildlife Refuge in NJ. She was on the beach telling visitors about the nesting shorebirds and why it is important to maintain their habitat. She also will work in the main visitor center and answer questions. She is excited to use this environmental knowledge towards a future law career.
I visited Sheyenne at the Forsythe National Wildlife Refuge in NJ. This refuge was right by Atlantic City; you can see the city from the Refuge. During my tour of the refuge, we would stop to get out of the car to help turtles cross the street. There were also tons of birds there. Sheyenne was sitting on the beach to talk to visitors about the nesting shorebirds. She was excited to use this environmental knowledge towards a career in health.
I've uploaded a bunch of pictures from my visits, so check out my page to see all the cool stuff our interns are up to this summer!