What Happens in May… Continues on into the Next Month

May Shenanigans

Where to even begin- May has been one of the busiest months for this RA-ship that I’ve had! I am so blessed to have experienced every opportunity that came my way this month, and describing all of it would probably lead me to writing an autobiography, so I will spare MOST of the details.

This month kicked off with me being able to go to Idaho Youth Challenge Academy in Pierce, ID. Here, I participated in a career discussion for working for the Forest Service with freshman- to senior-aged students, and even served as an interviewer during a session of mock interviews for these kids! 

The next big thing took me all the way to Kalispell, MT, where I took a Certified Interpretive Guide course through the National Interpretive Association. This was one of my favorite parts of the month- I really learned a lot about myself and my presenting style. Here, we basically learned how to make presentations or short-talks really interesting and engaging for a variety of audiences. We spent three days talking about how to make our talks/discussions relevant for the listener, engaging for a variety of ages and backgrounds, purposeful, thought-provoking, and memorable. I HIGHLY recommend anyone who finds that they are talking to a small or large audience on a daily basis to take this course and certify- even if you are just giving informational presentations to a bunch of coworkers about numbers, this course can help you keep your audience alert and attentive to what you are sharing (definitely learn how to keep people from dozing off)! After the course, I got to visit my best friend in Glacier National Park, where she works as a Law Enforcement Ranger!

Wrapping the month up, I spent one day in Powell, ID at the Powell Ranger Station, performing as a public affairs specialist. Our Forest hosted the Northern Rockies Wilderness Skills Institute for 2023, and I was tasked with documenting the first day’s events to post on social media.

The week ended with me taking an intensive, advanced wildfire behavior course. I learned in much greater detail how weathertopography, and fuels impact fire behavior, and how this knowledge is critical in developing burn management plans and suppression tactics. The knowledge I gained from this course will help me to further explain how wildland firefighters use fire as a management tool, as well as how they make decisions when battling unwanted wildfires.

It is crazy to think that I have been in this RA-ship for almost four months now. By the end of July, I will have all my hours complete and looking for the next big adventure!

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