I participated in the Juneau Icefield Research Program in Juneau, Alaska.
What did receiving the J. David Lowell Field Camp Scholarship mean to you?
My receipt of this scholarship was recognition for all of the work that I put into school over the past five years. It gave me the opportunity to actually apply what I learned in college by being in the field for a few months and working with professors and other scientists on interesting geologic problems.
What did that experience teach you about the geosciences, yourself, and your future career?
I learned a lot about glaciology, geomorphology, climatology, and polar science. I also learned about what is required to live and work in polar regions as a scientist. It was not always easy, but I loved being there for the whole summer. It helped me determine what I actually wanted to do as a polar scientist by exposing me to a number of different topics, including some that I didn’t know I might be interested in. Also, this model of field camp was helpful for me as a recent graduate as I am thinking about my next steps in life, and it helped me determine what that might be moving forward.
What opportunities did attending field camp provide that you wouldn’t have had otherwise?
Field camp helped me develop a large network of scientists with similar interests to my own who I will likely work with again in the future and will be a part of my professional network for my whole life. This network has already helped me as I start to think about graduate school. It also gave me the opportunity to get involved in more research and work on my science communication skills; for example, I was an author on an AGU poster for this fall, which was not something I expected to come out of participating in this field camp.
In your opinion, how important is field camp for geoscience students?
I think that every student who wants to attend field camp should be given the opportunity to do so. It is a great life-changing experience that provided me with a number of resources and opportunities that I would not have normally had. Most importantly, I made a lot of friends which makes me feel more included in the geoscience community.
Why should individuals support field camp opportunities for students?
Field camp is expensive—you have to pay for the program, travel, and equipment among other odds and ends. It adds up. In addition, due to the rigors of academic study, students are often not able to work or make money while they are in school, making these costs more of a burden. But given how important of an opportunity it is for students, . This is why I think that anyone who is able should support field camp costs.