The Museum was most fortunate to be the temporary workplace this winter of Laura Waterhouse, an American citizen born and raised in New Zealand, as she completed an internship program here during December, January, and February.
While interning at the Museum, Laura was engaged in both daily operations and research projects. From feeding birds and shoveling snow to researching and compiling regional museum data, updating signage for the endangered species exhibit, and developing materials for educational activities offered at the Museum, Laura covered a multitude of topics and tasks. Two very tangible and informative projects Laura completed were adding text and graphics to a comparative activity about birds’ feet and an origami mobile depicting bird migration. Laura met every assignment with clear purpose and focus and demonstrated great creativity and style with her independent projects.
Laura was referred to us by relatives in nearby towns who were familiar with the Museum and its mission. Laura completed her bachelor’s degree in Environmental Management and Planning with a major in Nature Conservation and Ecology through Lincoln University in Lincoln, Christchurch, New Zealand. She studied at Paraparaumu College in Paraparaumu, Wellington, prior to her university years and has amassed a variety of work skills and interests including wildlife management, GIS programming, landscape maintenance, and retail experience. Laura has garnered a number of academic awards including scholarships and the David Given Memorial Prize in Biological Diversity for originality and innovation in 2009. Associated with a long list of environmental conservation organizations, Laura has distinguished herself as a dedicated steward of the land with an emphasis on ecology and wildlife awareness and protection.
Enjoying a welcome opportunity to live with relatives in the area during her internship, Laura became well acclimated to challenging driving conditions over this wild Vermont winter and tackled the sport of snowboarding at Bolton Valley. It’s hard to pin Bob Spear down when it comes to identifying his favorite bird carving in the Museum, but Laura admitted she is partial to the Wild Turkey…and she spied plenty of them gobbling up corn below the feeding station this winter! During her time in North America, Laura planned to visit Montreal, Boston, and New York City with her boyfriend (also visiting from New Zealand).
We are grateful for being a part of Laura’s “summer vacation destination” and will continue to benefit from her presence and efforts on behalf of the Museum throughout the year. Thank you, Laura!!