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NWP Global Registry of Apprentice Ecologists - Howe Sound Secondary School, Squamish, British Columbia, Canada

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Howe Sound Secondary School, Squamish, British Columbia, Canada
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Registered: November 2013
City/Town/Province: Squamish, British Columbia
Posts: 1
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It was love at first sight, figuratively, not literally. That day rainy day back in grade one when Mrs. Pepper brought out a picture of sea birds caught in plastic rings, I felt a twinge of sorrow in my six year old heart. I wanted to help those naive creatures, and strived to find out how. Little did I know it would change my views drastically from then on; the urge to do everything I could to help out innocent beings and the habitat in which they live has become an everyday part of my life.
I chose to do my project on behalf of the Nicodemus Wilderness Project because many of my goals are the same as the Nicodemus Wilderness Project. I strive to get more youth involved in environmental preservation, by offering volunteer hours for those who would like to help with my project. I desire for more youth to be motivated to re-establish the ecological and communal welfare of not just my community, but the world. I hope to progress the local livelihood for wildlife through instruction and activism.
Squamish, British Columbia, Canada has an astounding environment; the ocean, mountains, rivers, lakes, forests and wildlife all thrive. There is one problem though: Squamish’s landfill is bursting at the seams. A few summers ago, Squamish’s district had to expand the landfill, but only large enough for it to last up to approximately five more years without having to expand it once again. The more habitats they would have to destroy for the landfill to expand once again is dreadful, not to mention the toxicity the garbage leaks into the environment.
This year, my project that I took on was making my school a more ecologically friendly school in general, especially in reducing waste. My efforts are both full of initiative and innovation in the sense that I have introduced many new things for helping the environment in my school as well as followed through with them energetically and determinately. I have introduced a new position onto my school’s Student Council, ‘Commissioner of Ecology’. I came across the idea of a ‘Commissioner of Ecology’ position on Student Council while doing research at the beginning of this school year. I then approached the principal of my school with the idea and through persistence and persuasion, she allowed it. As the Commissioner of Ecology I bring ecological initiatives to Student Council which, in turn, brings conservative habits to the school as a whole. As I have taken on this position I have restarted up the profitable recycling program at my school, as for the first two weeks of the school year, no clubs took it on. I spoke to a teacher who had previously run the ‘Climate Action Network’ at the school, and we decided to take the club on together, trying to get other students to become more environmentally aware. As the ‘Commissioner of Ecology’ on my school’s Student Council and as an active student in my school’s ‘Climate Action Network’ I decided to take on the school’s refundable recycling as well. I do get a few other students’ help, but usually it is between two other people and myself to collect, clean, sort, and return all of the recyclables every school week. Each week, we collect hundreds of plastic bottles, pop cans, tetra packs and milk containers. The satisfaction of keeping all of those items out of my local landfill is astonishing.
As a young conservationist, I am determined to get involved within my school and my community in an attempt to spark an ecological inventiveness in other’s minds. It brings a sense of joy that I have made a positive change in another’s life and the environment; as Mahatma Gandhi once said: “Be the change you wish to see in the world.”
I hope my efforts and determination inspire others to want to do the same. As this is the first year of the ‘Commissioner of Ecology’ spot on the Student Council, I hope other students decide to keep it going in the future, as well as keeping the `Climate Action Network` and recycling programs running, keeping ecological outlooks present within the student body. I anticipate my endeavours will help put a stop to ecological obliteration.
Being so involved with school and the community has really made a change not only on the environment, but on me as well. This whole project has helped me realize I want to study Environmental Sciences in university and hopefully get an ecological preservation job after that, either becoming a researcher or a teacher. I love being so involved; it gives me a sense of purpose and hope that I can truly make a difference.



END OF ESSAY



Post-project Interview with NWP:



WHERE DO YOU ATTEND OR PLAN TO ATTEND COLLEGE AND WHAT IS YOUR FIELD OF STUDY/INTEREST?
I plan to attend the University of Victoria this coming September, studying sciences, living in residence, preferably the ‘Sustainability Building’. I wish to eventually major in environmental biology of forest biology.


WHAT ARE YOUR FUTURE EDUCATIONAL, CAREER, AND LIFE GOALS?
I hope to obtain a Bachelor of Science, continuing to be an honours student while in university, and keep working towards a Master’s Degree. Once I have obtained my degree, I hope to do conservation work in botanic gardens, be an environmental researcher and possibly educate others on the environment at times. My life goals are to get other citizens more environmentally aware of their everyday actions, produce a few ecological documentaries, live completely off the grid one day and help contribute to the invention of something that will harvest the sun’s energy in a more efficient way.


WHAT DO YOU THINK ARE THE LONG-TERM BENEFITS TO YOUTH AND THE ENVIRONMENT MADE POSSIBLE BY THE APPRENTICE ECOLOGIST INITIATIVE?
The Apprentice Ecologist Initiative benefits youth not only financially, but it instigates motivation to continue to work on their ecological goals. Sometimes, one begins to doubt that their efforts actually make a difference on a larger scale, but when awarded something like the Nicodemus Wilderness Project Award, the doubt floats away. The motivation the Project and the Award provides benefits the environment; the individuals will continue to make environmental efforts throughout their lifetime due to the motivation.


HOW HAS YOUR APPRENTICE ECOLOGIST INITIATIVE PROJECT ENRICHED YOUR LIFE?
My Apprentice Ecologist Initiative has enriched my life via helping me feel like I am actually making a difference; actually taking environmental action in a bigger aspect of my life rather than just at home helps the environment even more. The Apprentice Ecologist Initiative Project prompted me to “practice what I preach” and bring ecological initiatives to both my school and community. All of this has led me to feel better about myself and my efforts.


WHY DO YOU FEEL IT IS IMPORTANT TO BE AN ACTIVE STEWARD OF THE ENVIRONMENT NOW AND IN THE FUTURE?
I believe it is important to be an active citizen who cares for and preserves our natural world because we are not the only species who inhabits Earth. We are not only bringing about the destruction of human beings, but of all the other innocent creatures on this planet as well. I believe that since human beings have made our Earth a giant trash can, it is also human beings responsibility to clean it up, and we need to protect the rest of the organisms on this planet.
Date: December 26, 2013 Views: 7062 File size: 17.0kb, 207.9kb : 968 x 1296
Hours Volunteered: 120
Volunteers: 5
Authors Age & Age Range of Volunteers: 15 to 30
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