Emily O’Brien, ’22, B.A. environmental science, has truly embraced the education and resources that Niagara University has provided during her undergraduate studies.
O’Brien has amplified her passion for environmental science through her amazing accomplishments inside the classroom, involvement with outside research, and participation in a New York State Parks internship. O’Brien is currently pursuing a career in wildlife conservation, specifically with amphibians and reptiles.
“I have gained a lot of field and lab techniques. There aren’t many undergraduate programs in the country that you can actually get hands-on experience so that was really big for me about Niagara,” said O’Brien. “I have been able to visit field sights to conduct data collection, analyze my own data, and then present my own results.”
Niagara University’s affiliation with the Office of Parks, Recreation, and Historic Preservation provided O’Brien with the resources necessary to be considered a strong candidate for the Conservation Steward internship. Conservation Stewards help assist with ongoing environmental projects throughout the region which involve tasks such as surveying, mapping, and removal of invasive species.
The ability to apply lessons learned in the classroom while being present in nature provides a transformative learning experience. Students like O'Brien thrive as they receive hands-on experience and fieldwork.
“I took a stream ecology course my junior year and every lab day we visited a different stream using different collection strategies,” said O’Brien. “I love being outside and doing this stuff.”
To learn more about Niagara University's environmental science program, click here.