I came into FLCC just as the CCURI grant was awarded (Finger Lakes Community College Earns $3.35 Million Grant) and my professor/advisor (John at Backyard Beasts) is also a co-principal investigator of the grant. I began studying in John's Black Bear Management class at FLCC, and learning about this interesting and understudied type of marking and behaviors that black bears have been observed creating. I began reading everything I could about black bears, and eventually John suggested presenting our class's work at a local student science conference (Rochester Academy of Science). I put together a 12(ish) minute long oral presentation, and started on a "quest" of sorts. I didn't realize at the time that in a few short years, I would be applying and getting accepted to national conferences with this topic. Since that first presentation, I've presented at: the Finger Lakes Institute Research Conference, the Northeastern Natural History Conference, the State University of NY Undergraduate Research Symposium, CCURI's own 1st national conference, and the National Conference of Undergraduate Research. It's amazing to me.
I am just so grateful to John, and Jim Hewlett (the brilliant man who wrote the grant, and who is now it's executive director) for all they are doing for URs like myself. There are countless others who have made this thing possible for me and other students, and I give you all a shout out as well!
So off I go! If you're at the TWS conference this week, perhaps we'll run into eachother.
|John and I at the Quabbin Reservoir in Massachusetts this past summer, posing next to a bear-scratched and bitten red pine.|