Environmental Policy Internships 

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Policy & Geology:

MICA Guides 

Mel Geisler, '21

As an Environmental Policy major with a geology minor, Mel Geisler ('21) has taken a number of courses that directly applied to his internship with MICA Guides in Glacier View, Alaska. In fact, Mel credits Prof. Doug Reusch as “an inspiration for me to get into the mountains and follow my dream of being a professional guide, but also to strive to learn more about the geology and glacial processes that have shaped much of Alaska. Without the knowledge I learned in his classes, not only would I not be nearly as knowledgeable on tectonic processes and glaciology, but I wouldn't even be able to look at mountains the same way as I do now.” Mel and his fellow interns now lead 3-hour glacier treks on Matanuska Glacier, a 26-mile long valley glacier, multiple times a day.

Mel Geisler ('21) trekking through Matanuska Glacier

during his internship in Glacier View, Alaska

Environment Policy:

Department of Public Works

Natalie Thomsen, '20

As a double major in Geography and Business Economics, Natalie looked forward to the opportunity to apply her classroom learning to a more "practical and real-life" experience through her Environmental Policy internship. "Working with the City of Gardiner’s Department of Public Works has offered a more engaging and insightful experience than I could have ever imagined. My internship has allowed me to explore my interests beyond my academic major in a way that will be beneficial to my future pursuits" in Environmental Policy. Natalie has since gone on to accept a job with CMP as a cartographer. "I would not have been offered the job without my internship with Gardiner. It was my experience mapping utility flows in Arcmap that sold me as the right candidate for them."

Natalie Thomsen ('20) working on a project for the City of Gardiner's Department of Public Works.


Policy & Geology

Kent Island Septic Runoff

Stuart Cole, '20

Residents in Kent Island, MD have struggled for years dealing with septic tank effluent runoff and its impact on their drinking water and nearby Chesapeake Bay. When Stuart Cole (‘20) began his internship, he strived to help eliminate the effluent runoff for the safety of the community and the environment. Stuart began by performing various aspects of septic tank installation, including homeowner consultation, documenting properties, and entering data into a GIS database. By “surveying roads to see if they had erosion problems, filling out surveys on an iPad, and taking pictures with a tablet,” he was able to perform almost all of the tasks in a course he took with Prof. Matt McCourt. Stuart's biggest takeaway was learning that there’s “a lot more that goes into big projects than just the project itself” as dealing with the public and government regulations “on a daily basis makes it a lot more complicated than what the goal of the project is.”

Stuart Cole ('20) worked to install various septic tanks in Kent Island, MD to eliminate septic tank runoff.

Last Updated August 2020 University of Maine Farmington - Office of Experiential & Global Education

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