Teaghan Rose ’19, left, and Sidney Anderson ’19 are College of the Atlantic's 2018 Acadia Scholars.Teaghan Rose ’19, left, and Sidney Anderson ’19 are College of the Atlantic's 2018 Acadia Scholars. Credit: Junesoo Shin ’21

Teaghan Rose ’19 and Sidney Anderson ’19 will gain valuable, real-world experience in conservation, science, and interpretation skills as they undertake their 11-week internships with the park.

“This internship will be an amazing way for me to apply the many different things I have learned about Acadia at COA and to teach this to others,” Rose said. “I am really excited for the opportunity to interact with visitors; I hope to share some of my excitement about the park with them.”

Teaghan Rose ’19, will spend her 2018 Acadia Scholars internship working with the Acadia National Park's interpretation division.Teaghan Rose ’19, will spend her 2018 Acadia Scholars internship working with the Acadia National Park's interpretation division. Credit: Juneshoo Shin ’21Rose, who is from Pottstown, PA, will spend her internship working with the Acadia National Park’s (ANP) interpretation division, where she will take on the role of park ranger, helping summer visitors to the park make the most of the wondrous natural landscape. For Rose, working with the interpretation division is an opportunity to share what she has learnt from classes at COA such as Geology of Mount Desert Island, Trees and Shrubs, and Ecology: Natural History, she said.

Anderson, of Oakland, NJ, will spend her internship assisting ANP wildlife biologist Bruce Connery and his team researching snapping turtles in the park. She will focus on nesting patterns of snapping turtles and their use of the park’s carriage roads in place of natural nesting habitats. Anderson will assist Connery in analyzing the impacts of human disturbance and predation on the survival rates of the animals. This will help the team monitor the health of the overall snapping turtle population in the park.

For Anderson, this internship represents the perfect opportunity to further explore her long-held fascination in turtles. It is also an unparalleled opportunity to compliment her research and education at COA, she said, which has included every opportunity for experiential work with turtles, field ecology courses, and independent studies with faculty like wildlife biologist Dr. Steve Ressel.

“My education at COA has allowed me to pursue this passion to depths I could not previously envision, and this internship fits perfectly with what I have been studying and working on here,” she said.

Acadia National Park provides COA students with an optimal setting for studying ecology, natural history, conservation, biology, and a host of other subjects.Acadia National Park provides COA students with an optimal setting for studying ecology, natural history, conservation, biology, and a host of other subjects.

Along with her interpretation work, Rose will be participating in ANP’s Apple Orchard Documentation Project. It is a little-known fact that among Acadias iconic lakes, mountains and seascapes, there exist a host of historically important apple orchard. It’s a perfect fit for Rose, who has done a lot of work at COA with history professor Dr. Todd Little-Siebold  studying local apple trees. She’ll also be able to use the geographic information systems (GIS) skills she has learned to map trees for future reference.

Both Acadia Scholars said they see the program as an opportunity to step into the world of national park services, learn valuable skills, and pick up on-the-job experiences necessary to work in similar dynamics and work environments in the future.

Sidney Anderson ’19, will spend her 2018 Acadia Scholars internship working with wildlife biologist Bruce Connery to research snapping turtles in Acadia National Park.Sidney Anderson ’19, will spend her 2018 Acadia Scholars internship working with wildlife biologist Bruce Connery to research snapping turtles in Acadia National Park. Credit: Juneshoo Shin ’21“This internship is a really amazing opportunity that we have at COA, in addition to just being in such close proximity to a national park,” Anderson said. “It is also a great way to make contacts. I am very much in the mindset of thinking about what I will do after school so it is great to have contacts within the park service that could potentially be a resource for future opportunities.”

For Rose, who hopes to persue outdoor pedagogy, the internship with Acadia National Park will provide an excellent platform for developing communications and outdoor-education skills.

“I love the park, being outside, and telling and teaching people about nature. I think this internship will give me an opportunity to develop my skills in communicating about nature, a valuable skill that I will take with me to jobs in the future,” she said. “I am also just very excited to learn more about the park!”

The COA Acadia Scholars program is a pilot project to develop a cohort of COA students who combine a course of study in natural resource conservation and management with internships at Acadia National Park and Schoodic Institute. The competitive program is underwritten by a two-year, $30,000 grant from the Endeavor and Davis Conservation foundations. This funding supports internships, coursework, and independent studies related to the Park and resource protection. The students maintain the Acadia Scholar status for the remainder of their time at COA, and are likely to focus their capstone senior projects on some aspect of their work as Acadia Scholars.

“We are so excited to again partner with Acadia National Park and Schoodic Institute to offer this program,” said COA president Darron Collins ’92. “These institutions attract the very highest caliber of scientists, ecologists, and natural resource specialists. Placing our students in their capable hands for a summer is truly an incredible opportunity.”