Goodbye to Shoshone-igans!

Everyone from this summer before entering Gypsum cave.

Everyone from this summer before entering Gypsum cave.

Things are coming to an end. The leaves are falling off of the trees. The plants are curling in on themselves. The sun is drifting farther and farther away. And my internship is passing along the last of its knowledge as I wrap up in Shoshone and prepare for my departure. It is a time for reflection.

My resume has grown exponentially as I’ve added experience in various vegetative protocols, Seeds of Success activities, and a multitude of side projects allowing me to dabble in new experiences. Most recently, my fellow interns, fuels crews, and I collected 235 lbs. of sagebrush seeds! We delivered them to Lucky Peak Nursery in Boise for cleaning. The seeds will be planted and grown into seedlings for future restoration projects!

All 235 lbs. of sagebrush seeds we collected!

All 235 lbs. of sagebrush seeds we collected!

The future is hopeful, yet slightly grim right now. I was unable to lock on a job so¬†I will be heading back to Kansas for the winter. I will find some work in my college town and I’m going to look around for some volunteer opportunities in wildlife to gain more experience. I am going to buckle down and study hard for the GRE and take the test this winter. I would love to get a Master’s program in bat¬†conservation (thank you to this internship for introducing me a little bit to bats)! I would love an opportunity to do this internship program again next summer, so there is that to look forward to, too!

I will miss the West in the mean time and hope to return as soon as I can! Living life in my 5th-wheel trailer makes picking up and moving easy.

I am so thankful for this internship and all of the experiences I’ve been fortunate enough to have. I will never forget the people I’ve met at my field office nor the beautiful lands of Idaho. I have been so inspired by this state that I hope to live here one day in the future. Idaho is a best kept secret. Thank you to the staff, the Chicago Botanic Garden, and my fellow interns for making this such an incredible experience!

Everyone from this summer before entering Gypsum cave.

Everyone from this summer before entering Gypsum cave.

Marissa Jager – Shoshone Field Office – Idaho

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