Master’s degree conservation study in Belize

by Emma Carey | SSC staff naturalist

I recently enrolleded as a graduate student in Project Dragonfly’s Global Field Program through Miami University in Ohio. I am pursuing my Master of Arts in Teaching in Biological Sciences, and focusing on conservation education. The two-and-a-half year program is conducted online and includes three trips to conservation hot-spots around the globe. My first trip, this past June, was to Belize, and next summer I hope to visit one of the program’s African locations–either Kenya or Namibia!

Visiting Altun Ha, ancient Mayan archaeological ruins

Belize is a country rich in biodiversity as well as conservation efforts, making it great place to start my fieldwork education.

During the trip, classmates and I hiked through caves, learned about community conservation efforts, and toured Mayan ruins. We conducted field work in the jungle and while snorkeling along the Belizean coral reefs. Manatees, black howler monkeys, parrots, bats, and spotted rays were just some of the species we got to see in their natural habitats, not to mention the multitude of majestic animals at the Belize Zoo. We met many inspirational people who have dedicated their lives to the conservation of the native wildlife and educating their communities about the environment.

Celebrating my birthday on Tobacco Caye, a tiny coastal island

I have already started to use my experiences to further my work here at the Seacoast Science Center, and am excited to continue to do so!

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