Importance of Natural Resources

Daniel Crawford – Geography, Environment and Society Undergraduate

My name is Daniel Crawford. I’m a
sophomore and majoring in Geography and
Environmental science. I actually came to the University planning on
majoring in engineering. I took a course in the Geography Department, it
would have been a requirement for an engineering program and it really peaked my interest in the program and
I was really becoming interested in a lot of what the faculty were doing. The course that I took
was “Biogeography of the Global Garden” and I was taught by Scott St. George. Toward the end of the semester
he actually put a slide up on the screen calling for applications for new
interns in the Dendochronology lab that he runs. So I decided to go out on a limb
and apply for that and I wound up getting the job, and that I
sort of threw me into the discipline of geography. There were students of all
different majors that had worked in this lab for all four years of their college
career. Some studying law, some studying English,
and they still went on to graduate with those degrees but they got to have this awesome experience of
learning how to read tree rings, and going out doing this
actual field work that professionals do. There are students there
who have use the tree rings to look at flood
histories, as well as fire histories, as well as
temperature and precipitation patterns. So just that there are so many
different applications of this one small part of Geography. The best piece of advice I
could give would definitely be to try to get on good terms with the
professors and don’t be a stranger to them because I’ve definitely found that all that of them
really eager to help you learn, especially when you express an interest
in what they teaching. Geography takes on very interdisciplinary nature,
its taking these ideas from so many different natural sciences and combining them into one group of
knowledge. Ithink that’s an idea that’s really at the core of a
liberal arts education. If you really have any interest in the
natural sciences than this might be the major for you.

Reader Comments

  1. Dan!!! So wonderful to see where your interests are taking you. I was actually teaching my students about biogeography and Wallace's line this week. I'll be passing this on to my students for some inspiration! Maggie (Will's mom)

  2. Also, VERY good advice about not being shy to connect with your professors. They are there to teach you and do enjoy sharing their interests and research. It makes a difference in your college experience.

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