Gillian Smith Houston, a student from Eckerd College in Saint Petersburg, Florida in the United States arrived in Palau this week to begin her month long internship with Palau International Coral Reef Center (PICRC). Ms. Houston started her internship on the 19th of July and will be with PICRC until the 19th of August. In her time at PICRC Ms. Houston will work in the Research and Aquarium Department under the supervision of PICRC Communications and Outreach Officer, Anna Parker. Over the next month, Ms. Houston will work with the Communications and Outreach staff, assist the aquarium with tank renovations and conduct fieldwork with PICRC researchers.
Ms. Houston is currently a junior in college majoring in Environmental Studies with a minor in Coastal Management. Through this internship Ms. Houston is expecting to gain knowledge that she will be able to apply to future academics, internships and eventually her career. She is also eager to gain more hands-on experience working with marine life and learning research techniques.
Throughout college, Ms. Houston has become involved in numerous internships and volunteer opportunities so that she can broaden her view of what she has learned in school and how to apply it to the real world. “I found out about PICRC when I came to Palau last year to go diving with my family,” Ms. Houston says. “I fell in love with the scenery and the culture and am excited to start my internship and get back to the best diving in the world.” Ms. Houston hopes to one day return to school for a graduate degree and is taking this opportunity to narrow down her educational interests.
PICRC receives requests from interns and volunteers from all over the world in all types of academic institutions. These students work closely with PICRC staff on a wide range of projects in the field and in the office. The internship programs remain valuable to the Center by bringing in new ideas and engaging students in conservation efforts in Palau. In return interns learn from researchers and gain hands on experience in research and conservation work at PICRC.
To learn more about our internship and volunteer program, please visit www.picrc.org. [/restrict]