University of Alaska-Fairbanks
Marine Mammal Researcher
I was born and raised in the PNW and have never wanted to live anywhere else. After earning my BS in marine biology from Western Washington in 2012, I took a job in Australia studying dolphins. To make a 6 month story short, I fell in love with marine mammal research. As someone who covets learning and who has trouble sitting at a desk (I have a jerry rigged cardboard stand up desk), marine mammal research allows me time in the outdoors, interacting with animals that are both majestic and more complex than we could ever have imagined.
Moving to Alaska from Washington state was an easy choice for me. The mountains are bigger, the outdoors more rugged, and the research more challenging. As a former collegiate soccer player, I am always looking to push myself, and Alaska seemed like an ideal place to test my boundaries.
If you have ever seen a humpback whale, it is not hard to see why I decided to study these creatures. My choice was only reinforced by the lack in physiological information on these animals. Thus in the fall of 2014, I embarked on a M.S. degree through the University of Alaska-Fairbanks, under the leadership of Dr. Shannon Atkinson.
I am excited by what this new year has in store. With 200 more archived samples to analyze I will be busy in the lab (and I can catch up on the podcast Serial season 2). I will also get to spend more time in the field, utilizing my crossbow skills to obtain biopsy samples, my photography skills for photo ID's, and getting a fantastic arm workout waving my 21 ft carbon fiber pole around to collect whale snot.
Thank you so much for taking the time to view my webpage. It means a lot that the general community is engaged and cares about the wonderful creatures that share our planet. Whether or not you choose to donate is your choice. I am simply happy to let others know what I am researching and hopefully to strike a spark in others to encourage a world where environmental stewardship is the norm.
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