BA in Environmental and Sustainability Studies (CHSS)

This degree provides students with theoretical and practical knowledge of three aspects of environmental and sustainability studies: people, prosperity, and planet.

Katherine Russell, 2020

Katherine Russell

In 2018 I spent the summer in Homer, AK working with the Student Conservation Association.

For three months I interned at the headquarters for the Alaska Maritime National Wildlife Refuge as a member of AmeriCorps with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Here, I did over 500 hours of public service educating hundreds people of all ages about the flora and fauna of southcentral Alaska and the wildlife refuge they were visiting. I spent every day giving interpretive programs (lectures, educational hikes, demonstrations, and trips to tide-pools), creating educational materials and exhibits (on seaweeds, kelps, and marine invertebrates found in the inter-tidal zone of Kachemak Bay, AK), working on communications (creating flyers, Facebook posts, and newsletter articles) and assisting with needs at the Visitor Center. In this internship, I learned the importance education has in protecting our environment and the importance of being a role model and a leader for people of all ages. Some of the most impactful experiences I had were with small groups of people, on hikes or while walking in the tide-pools, and being able point out eaglets in a nest or sea stars in rocky areas. Moments like these inspire me to be a successful leader in the environmental realm in my future where I will utilize experiences from jobs and internships in my personal life as well as experiences at George Mason.