Squam Conservation Intern Journal

The Squam Conservation Internship provides skills and experience for future conservation professionals while working as the driving force behind the SLA’s conservation mission.  This volunteer internship provides hands-on conservation work experience and certifications over a broad range of activities.  Interns serve as campsite hosts and caretakers at our backcountry campsites, work toward the eradication of variable milfoil, engage both youth and adults in environmental education, and perform other conservation duties such as shoreline restoration and trail maintenance and construction. Squam Conservation Interns also regularly write about their experiences in the Squam Watershed.

Learn more about the internship program here. 

To view intern journals from previous summers, click on the links below.

     2016

     2015

     2014

     2013

June 26, 2017

Dominique

Picture this. I am fifteen feet underwater floating effortlessly still and breathing as comfortably as I would be on land. The only thing I can hear is the light hum of water surrounding my ear drum and the rhythmic bubbles released from my exhaled breaths. I am encompassed by sunbeams cutting through the blue green, crystal-clear water. The pond weed reaching from the bottom to the surface resembles an underwater forest from some parallel universe. To my left is Katri, my intern manager, and three feet to my right is an enormous spawning smallmouth bass. In front of us is a small patch of invasive variable milfoil, which together we dig out its roots, careful not to make any fragments, and place it in a mesh bag attached to our side.

This is what I experienced on my second dive day while hand-pulling here at the Squam Lakes Association as a conservation intern. Luckily for me, scuba diving for the prolific variable milfoil is one of the more common things that we do as interns for “work” and it is quickly becoming my favorite. Variable milfoil was first identified in Squam in 2000, but a new infestation has not been observed since 2007. This is largely due in part to the work of SLA staff, numerous volunteers, past interns, and of course Millie, the boat that is home to the Diver Assisted Suction Harvester (DASH), which was designed by the SLA’s own Director of Recreation, Brett Durham.

The immense satisfaction of clearing a patch of milfoil is enough to keep us coming back day after day to do it again. After three dive days in a row I started dreaming about pulling it from the floor in our intern cottage. Another intern went on a run and was taken back for a moment when a blown over tree resembled a milfoil stem swaying in the water a little too closely. I don’t believe I speak for myself when I say that the lakes beauty has had a profound impact on all the interns and it is that beauty that drives us to work towards keeping it pristine for years to come.

So far, I have been personally tormented by a raccoon that always seems to be one step ahead of me (her name is Betsy), cleaned out numerous buckets of composted poop, and moved a lot of stuff from one place to another, and then often to another. Even with all these misadventures, it is the tangible results that we can already see from our work that puts a smile on our face, even when we are up to our elbows in knee deep backed up drainage below a composting toilet. Stay tuned.

Dominique is rising junior at Plymouth State University studying Environmental Biology and minoring in Sustainability. Click here to read Dominique's bio.

June 23, 2017

Eric

In the first week of our training we interns had a cheesy moment when during one session of training we were told not to be responsible, but to be response-able. This was accompanied by a nice visual of response-able spelled out on a large easel, with the able part underlined in red marker. The idea behind ‘response-able’ is that we, as interns, are not trained to know the exact solution for every problem we encounter, but rather we are able to solve problems using our own individual methods, i.e, we are able to respond. Much of our training reflected this ethos, with emphasis placed on figuring solutions out to problems instead of memorization. Training in this way felt much harder than the more traditional methods I have grown accustomed to over years of schooling, where teachers gave me all the needed information and walked me through the steps. However, training in this fashion allows for us to be more independent, encourages creativity, and favors practical solutions over theoretical ones. ‘Response-able’ training involves making mistakes (which we have made many of), and learning from them, figuring out what went right and what went wrong.  

With the summer schedule in full swing it now makes sense to me why we were trained in this fashion. As I write this I am preparing to spend my first solo weekend on Bowman Island. I will spend three days on an island, with no cell phone service and no internet. The problems I face I will have to solve on my own. I won’t be able to Google for a solution or phone my dad. Hopefully there won’t be any massive issues needing immediate attention, but even so, I feel prepared should one occur, as training in this fashion builds one's self-efficacy, one's belief in their own ability to finish an objective.

Looking forward, I expect my fellow interns and I will have to be quite response-able this summer. We have already managed to break a number of things, from windows to boats, and I only expect this list to grow. We raised a mouse and caught a squirrel. Have had to fend off raccoons from our food supplies. Every day I wake up and head off to work I have no idea what to expect, the only certain is that I know I am prepared, and able to respond.

Eric is a rising sophomore at Bates College where he hopes to major in environmental economics. Click here to read Eric's bio.

June 21, 2017

Steve

These first four weeks have gone by fast. During my time at Squam, I have been certified in wilderness first aid, commercial boating, and just yesterday scuba diving. Even though I come from a water sport background, the scuba certification was most troublesome for me. Our first dives in the frigid waters of Winnipesaukee left me with a new standard for cold. Besides the relentless cold, I also had difficulty clearing my ears with the water pressure.

Now that I am scuba certified, I can assist in SLA’s mission to remove variable milfoil from Squam Lake. When not controlled, milfoil takes over shallow waterways and chokes out other aquatic life. If left, milfoil can become severed and entangled on the props of boats. Milfoil fragments can drift far distances, before anchoring to the bottom of the lake and creating a new milfoil infestation. Fragments that remain on the boat and then fall off in other water bodies also cause new milfoil proliferations. SLA has Lake Hosts who advocate the clean, drain, dry program, which is intended to prevent the unintentional spread of milfoil and other invasive species by boaters. Besides sending out divers and snorkelers to screen the lake for milfoil SLA also utilizes the Squam Keeping volunteers to help detect milfoil by kayak. Preventing the spread of milfoil is crucial to conserving the aesthetics and biodiversity of Squam Lake.

Being an avid runner, I spend much of my free time running the 50 miles of trails maintained by SLA. As I found out earlier last week, while doing level one trail maintenance with Brian, the trails and rock formations do not grow out of the mountain. These trails are maintained by SLA volunteers. Running the Squam ridge is one of my favorite runs because of the near panoramic views that overlook the lake. From this vantage point, I can see the SLA headquarters, Bowman, and Moon; I know my fellow interns are working hard to preserve the natural beauty of Squam Lake.

Steve is a rising junior at Virginia Tech where he studies Fish and Wildlife Conservation. Read his full bio here.

June 17, 2017

Tamara

Just three days ago, I celebrated my 22nd birthday on one of the few days off that the interns have during our month of constant training for the summer months to come. It was a beautiful day: clear skies, sun, an occasional breeze, and, most importantly, no rain. I spent the day exploring Plymouth, shopping, and going to the movies to live my day to the fullest and escape the difficulties of the day. You see, I have a twin sister, and this year was the very first time her and I have been apart on our day of birth celebration. It was an emotionally tough day with tears and heartache for Minnesota, but it was a day that I lived through despite all of that.

With a month of the internship under my belt, I can easily say that I have experienced a multitude of arduous moments, tasks, and days. The interns first scuba diving session in Lake Winnipesaukee was one such day. The day started off with excitement from the interns (100% nervousness for me), but that quickly changed when all nine of us (Elizabeth was already scuba certified) were sitting in Lake Winnipesaukee’s horrendously cold 55 degree waters on that grey and overcast day. The cold that consumed the interns and I was unlike anything I have ever experienced. The lake rapidly stole the warmth from my body and left me without feeling in my hands and feet for an hour after I got out of the water. By the time I finally descended to the bottom of the lake following my fellow interns I could barely see three feet in front of me, and I was panicking. My first panic stricken thought was that I could not do this. I am going back to Minnesota. It felt too overwhelming and impossible to do.

The second time I thought that I was not capable of going on was my first day trail work. It was a hot, sunny day, and Dom, Alice, Riley, Nate, and I cleared out water bars and lopped tree branches up to Mount Morgan. The hike itself would have been manageable if not for the two heavy tools I had to carry on my tiny self and the consistent energy that I used doing the actual trail work. That added weight left my barely fit self, stopping to just breathe on the ascent, and my legs felt like they could barely take the next step. I truly thought I did not have the muscle power to get to the top.

Cut to the picture attached of me smiling on top of Mount Morgan with Squam Lake and Lake Winnipesaukee off in the distance behind me. I somehow survived the strenuous work, heat, and mosquitoes (barely), and it made me a little bit stronger physically and mentally.

The difficult work that the interns and I are doing from trail work to diving for invasive variable milfoil is crucial. Crucial for the intern's personal growth. Necessary for the conservation of the Lakes region of the state. Needed for the protection of the watershed. The only way to draw people into the conservation of this planet and actually protect it is to put in work and effort. I wholeheartedly believe this after being a part of the SLA team for the past month.

Being away from home is challenging, diving still gives me a shock of anxiety, and the thought of trail work makes me feel like I am Bilbo going up against Smaug (LOTR til death). BUT, I know in my heart that all of these challenges and all of the work that the interns are doing will force me to grow in all aspects of my life.

Tamara is from Minnesota. She is currently attending the University of Minnesota- Twin Cities where she is majoring in Fisheries, Wildlife, and Conservation Biology. Click here to read Tamara's bio.

 

June 15, 2017

Riley

Windows down, wind rushes through my overgrown hair and beard. There's a song on, I don't know its name but it’s pretty and the car seems to move to its sound. I am surrounded by good people, fellow interns Stephen, Dom, Elizabeth, and Becca. We are on our way home to the cottage after a long day of hiking in the White Mountains. We are close now, as my eyes recognize the forests of Holderness as they fly by. I have always enjoyed riding in cars in the summertime, but I certainly have never felt like this. 

Memories take me back to long drives with my family during my childhood. My mother and father man the front two seats, my brother is beside me, and my dog, Boomer, is trying his very best to find the perfect wind accessing point. I feel connected to all of them, we are bonded by love. But never do I remember feeling connected to the world beyond the car in the same way, to the forests, lakes, and towns that passed us by. 

I notice now that this has changed. As we roam through Holderness and approach SLA, I am hypnotized by the natural beauty that surrounds us. On one side of the car lie the woods, and Squam rests on the other. I feel connected to both, a bond forged through my interactions within them. The first three weeks of this internship have required us to actively participate in conserving both woods and water. I have aided in the upkeep of trails, working towards maintaining the natural integrity of the forests encompassing Squam Lake. Similarly, I have begun to help in SLA's mission to control invasive milfoil within the watershed, through hand-picking it while scuba diving. 

I have dirtied my hands in the worlds that currently whiz past me. I know those woods, I know that water, and I know the people sitting beside me. I have never felt so connected in one moment, and certainly have rarely felt so alive. 

Riley is from New Jersey. He is a rising sophomore at Bowdoin College in Maine and plans to major in environmental studies and political science. Click here to read Riley's bio.

 

June 12, 2017

Elizabeth

I am crouched on slightly rotting wooden boards with my head dipped under the composting toilets on Bowman Island, inspecting the horribly flooded system from the seemingly endless rain as the mosquitos dive-bomb me and my shoes slowly become soaked with questionable water and muck. Needless to say, not my favorite moment on the lake thus far. To throw fuel on an already burning fire, my arms aren’t long enough to reach the clips necessary to remove the bin full of the solid waste, though I had of course managed to stir up enough silt so that I was now flying blind as well. Overwhelmed, incredibly frustrated, knees burning from squatting for what feels like an eternity, and tired of smelling decay, I am ready to quit.

But then I remember I’m not alone – Stephen is hovering nearby doing other tasks and luckily for me is 6’3” and has much longer arms then I do (though I know this is hard to believe since I tower over most at a lofty 5’4”). And he is willing to help with my job, though he has already serviced two other toilets today. Together, we quickly got everything taken care of and moved on to other things. Key word, together. Alone it was a daunting task, but as a unit it became manageable. After a quick dip in the lake, and generous amounts of hand sanitizer, I found myself wrapped around a big pine tree, and smiling. Picture attached.

Riley calls that afternoon #2 fun (pardon the pun). When I asked, I learned it’s a day that’s not your favorite, but when time has passed you look back and laugh. I’m not sure I’m there yet, though I have definitely learned a lot about myself and about what it takes to make this glorious lake function. I had always assumed that Squam existed in large part due to the gentle footprints left by those that visit. My time at SLA this summer has proven me very wrong – in fact there are people all over the lake fighting tooth and nail to keep Squam a pristine ecosystem. They do not necessarily end up on the evening news, but from sky to summit to “sea” their determined efforts defend and protect this lake. I am part of that quiet army now, and so everything we do as interns is important – from the toilets to diving for milfoil to trail work to lake hosting. The jobs are just too important to quit. The mission – both SLA’s and the one everyone who puts a toe or a prop into Squam must adopt – is greater than any one of us. So, day in and day out, we do what needs doing. And more times than not, I go to bed sore from laughing, full of group dinner, and fall asleep to the lullaby of bullfrogs from our open window. Most importantly, ready to do it all again (and more) the next day.

It is in these moments of grit that I begin to grasp the depth of my love for this lake and its wildlife and the people it attracts. I have been on Squam every year I have been alive, and I thought I had a pretty good understanding of the lake, both with regards to its ecology and culture. These three weeks have deconstructed – and rebuilt – my appreciation and understanding for this magical place. I know this is only the beginning, this summer will inevitably be a continuous process of dismantling and reassembling. We are just getting started.

I sit here, in a rare moment indoors and under artificial light, watching Alice and Tamara in the kitchen preparing food for our upcoming camp out, playing Phantom of the Opera and singing along. My fingers and forearms are sore from an evening session of rock climbing at the Fisher Barn with Jon (who’s since been renamed Jojo), Becca and Dominique are laughing downstairs as they fill their dry bags to capacity for our camp out this weekend, and Eric and Nate sit with noses buried in books. All is well. I know while each day will inevitably bring its challenges, it will also bring its moments of joy and appreciation for this golden lake, and the lifelong friendships I will forge over the coming months.

I am a tree hugger, this is my crew of ten, and we are* the keepers of Squam Lake. 

*(some of)

Elizabeth is from Connecticut. She currently attends Washington-Lee University and is a double major in Economics and English. Click here to read Elizabeth's bio.

 

June 9, 2017

Becca

The cold never bothered me anyway... and luckily, the rain doesn’t either.

This song lyric rings very true to the first few weeks out here on Squam Lake. It is not only relevant to the weather conditions, but this song has been played and sung around the house on more than one occasion. One night a few of the interns, myself included, sang a beautiful rendition of the entire Frozen soundtrack, in addition to the High School Musical soundtrack. Well, I guess I shouldn’t really say beautiful, as some of us, again, myself included don’t have the greatest voice ever. It’s not easy competing with Alice’s lovely voice. We should save both the singing and the cooking for her!

The cold and rain have not stopped us from getting any work done and definitely haven’t stopped us from having fun on days off either. On our day off this week, four of us climbed Mt. Morgan in the pouring rain. This was the beginning of our quest to become Squam Rangers. The Squam Ranger program here at SLA encourages you to get out and hike all 50 miles of trails surrounding the lake. Part of the work we will be doing this summer is focused on maintaining all of these trails. There is a lot of time and effort that goes into making sure all of the trails are marked, cleared and disturb as little vegetation as possible. Volunteers are also a huge part of maintaining the trails. I have only worked one day of trail maintenance this summer, but that alone has already given me a new appreciation for all the hard work that Brian and all the volunteers put in. Together our efforts allow the public to enjoy all the trails here on Squam. I am very much looking forward to not only working to maintain the trails, but also spending my off days hiking them for pleasure.

It has only been just over two weeks since we arrived here, but with how much we have learned it feels like months have gone by. The work is certainly not always easy, but it is all extremely rewarding!

Becca is from Chicago, Illinois. She graduated from Illinois State University in 2015 with a BA in Biological Sciences and a minor in Environmental Science. Click here to read her bio.

June 6, 2017

Nathan

So, the first two weeks are the hardest right? I don’t actually know the answer to this question. I sit here hopeful they are not. I always like a good challenge and these two weeks have not disappointed. I can now say that I am Wilderness First Aid certified, CPR certified, Safe Boating Certified, I’ve passed all the requirements for a New Hampshire Commercial Boating License, and the biggie: I am SCUBA Certified! So as cliché as it sounds, hard work pays off.  Lo and behold there are more certifications on the horizon! I’m not afraid of hard work and manual labor, because it does the body good and the sense of accomplishment afterwards is one of the best rewards- probably another cliché but I’m being honest here.

I know this is going to be a great summer based on the people I’m spending the summer with! I love my fellow interns and that is normally a difficult statement for me to make after only knowing people for two weeks. There just seems to be a rapid bond that emerges when you live and work with nine other people. Coming into this internship I was hesitant to share my life with this many strangers but I’ve found that it comes naturally. The personality clashes, control issues, and disorganization I was a little fearful of has yet to manifest itself and at this point. I can confidently say that manifest they shall not! We just mesh too well. Everyone seems to be finding their roles within the group be it the group mother, the one you can always count on for a good laugh, the one you can’t have a bad conversation with, and so on. I could honestly go on and on to describe each person’s role within the group but I would exceed any readers’ patience at that point.

As for me, I can’t say what my role is yet. Maybe it’s the music guy, whom you can count on to have a song for every situation- despite the cringes from his housemates. Maybe it’s the nature know-it-all who gets distracted way too easily by a pretty bird or a tree he can’t identify- again to the cringes of his housemates. Ultimately my fellow interns will guide me into a role whether I like it or not, but no matter what I will embrace it- so they best be careful.

It has taken me forever to figure out how to put these last two weeks to paper from my perspective, because I find myself at a loss for words. I’ve had a blast so far and I see it as a sign of good things to come this summer. So long as my fellow interns- whom I feel I will be referring to as my family come summer's end- can put up with me, this will be the summer of a lifetime.

Nathan is from Indiana. He graduated in May of 2017 from Ball State University with a degree in biology. Click here to read his bio.

 

June 3, 2017

Jon

I sit here, exhausted after a scuba class, to write about my experience as an intern for Squam Lakes Association. I almost don't know where to begin. We have done so much already. From learning how to clean composting toilets, to getting lost trying to navigate around the lake, we have barely had time to breath. And I have loved every second of it. I go to bed exhausted every night entirely satisfied having accomplished something that day. Today I walked back to the intern house on a path that my fellow interns and I had created, in a field that we had cleared of brambles.

I can't wait to see what else we accomplish throughout the summer. We get to learn how clean the lake of all the milfoil, take water quality tests, and do loon conservation! What could be better than that? I will be making a difference in the conservation field. All while working in a beautiful place with amazing people.

We have really bonded as a group this past week. We share glances through our fogged up goggles as we shiver at the bottom of the pool during the scuba class. Two birthdays (including my own) have been celebrated in the week and a half that we have been here. Both have been amazing moments shared by everyone. I was even serenaded with the Swedish version of “Happy Birthday.” I think that sums it up.

Doing amazing worthwhile work for the summer. Check. Learning new things. Check. Having an amazing group of people to share this with. Check. I think this summer is going to be one to remember.

Jon is from Georgetown, Massachusetts. He is studying Wildlife and Fisheries Management at Unity College where he will be entering his senior year this coming fall. Click here to read his bio.

 

May 30, 2017

Alice

This past week I graduated college, drove to New Hampshire, moved into a house with nine strangers, got my boating license, drove a boat for the first time, got my wilderness first aid certification, and raked poop from an outhouse on an island in the middle of a lake. To say the least, it has been quite a whirlwind experience. This absolute flood of new experiences is drowning me in a sea of thoughts and feelings. These range from tearful farewells as I said goodbye to my college family, to jaw dropping astonishment as I rounded the corner on the highway and got my first glimpse of the northeast and its expansive mountains. If I could paint you a picture of the breathtaking beauty of Squam Lake, I would. As the English idiom goes “A picture is worth a thousand words.” Unfortunately for you, I am not a good painter. I can suggest Googling or searching Bing (for the 5 people out there that may use that), pictures of Squam Lake.

A standout highlight of my whirlwind week involves food: a thing that brings me endless joy and happiness. Food is not a new concept to me, however it is something that I missed preparing. I spent my four years at college living in a dorm and living off my college meal plan. Though a meal plan was thoroughly more time saving than cooking, I missed the joy of walking down grocery store isles and dreaming of the endless possible recipes I could concoct. I missed filling my living space with the beautiful aroma of sizzling vegetables and warm baked goods. I missed the looks on people’s faces when I tell them that the food is ready and their delighted exclamations as they ate. However, this week that all changed.

I have the pleasure of making platters of fresh veggies and cheese, brownies, pasta salad, and Belgian waffles. My cooking addiction, as that is what it is, and love of feeding people earned me the house name of “mom” within the first 24 hours of my arrival. How else would we have the energy to tackle that days tasks without a full and prepared belly? I bonded with my house-mates through hours of talking and snacking in the kitchen and living room. Constantly munching on something or other as we moved from ten strangers to ten friends.

I am excited to see how this summer unfolds. I know there will be lots to discover, pounds of milfoil to excavate, people from far and wide encountered, and new and lasting relationships forged. All, I am certain, with a constant and ever evolving menu.

Alice is from Durham, North Carolina. She graduated from Goucher College in May of 2017 where she majored in biology and minored in chemistry. Click here to read her bio.

 

2017 Intern Bios

Alice

It's Alice, like Alice in Wonderland. I hail from Durham, North Carolina, although I have spent the last four years of my life living in Baltimore. I attended Goucher College, where I majored in biology and minored in chemistry. I kept myself busy by playing tennis on my college team and working odd jobs around campus. Perhaps my favorite job was acting and eventually managing the school mascot: the gopher. I spent my entire childhood adventuring in the woods, I'm excited to have some more adventures this summer at Squam Lake.

 

Becca

My name is Becca and I am from Chicago, Illinois. I graduated from Illinois State University in 2015 with a BA in Biological Sciences and a minor in Environmental Science. My passion for the environment stemmed from a love I have had for turtles ever since I was a little girl. Some of my hobbies include running, going to concerts, tossing a frisbee, and doing puzzles. I am very excited to trade in my life in the concrete jungle this summer for diving, camping, hiking and connecting to the beautiful land that surrounds us!

 

 

 

Dominique

My name is Dominique and I am from small-town Francestown in southern New Hampshire. I am a rising junior at Plymouth State University studying Environmental Biology and minoring in Sustainability. Within my studies, I have found myself to be particularly interested in conservation as well as the many ways that humans have an impact on species diversity and ecosystems. Learning about animals and how they interact with their ecosystems has become a passion of mine. I hope in the future to have a career where I spend my time outside pursuing that passion. In my free time I enjoy hiking, playing field hockey, reading, cooking, and bird-watching. I also enjoy learning about living a sustainable lifestyle and taking small steps every day to implement those ideas into my own life. I am beyond excited for our summer as interns with the Squam Lakes Association to start!

 

 

Elizabeth

My name is Elizabeth Wolf and I am a rising senior at Washington and Lee University in Virginia. I'm a double Economics and English major. I've done substantial work in developing cost valuation structures for marine habitats in the Caribbean, mainly coral reefs. My last project was focused on Marine Protected Areas in Cuba. I have conducted field biology work for Massachusetts Audubon and after studying several species of Lepidoptera and getting to know the organization, I was asked to work with the Director to develop a Capital Campaign which has recently reached it's goal!

I'm from Connecticut, but I've been coming to the Lake every summer I've been alive, and I'm so excited to spend three months on Squam. I love everything to do with the Lakes Region and I want to do my part in helping conserve it. I love SCUBA diving, sport rock climbing, hiking, kayaking, sailing, horseback riding, and swimming. Basically I'm a fan of anything that brings me outside. After graduation in May of 2018 I hope to pursue a career where I can put my business and economics training to work in a way that can have a positive environmental impact. In the mean time, it's time to jump in with both feet to Summer of 2017!

 

Eric

Hi, I'm Eric Glover. I am from Meredith, NH, and am currently enrolled in the Bates class of 2020. Although I have yet to declare my major, I am leaning towards environmental economics, and longer term, environmental law.  The majority of my 19 summers have been spent in New Hampshire, either at summer camp or my grandparent’s lake house.  I like to spend my free time reading, hiking, or hanging out with my friends. In the winter I am an avid skier. I also like hockey, and play for the Bates club team. 

 

 

 

Jon

Hi I'm Jonathan Brock from Georgetown, Massachusetts! I am currently attending Unity College in Maine and will be a Senior when I return this Fall. I am currently studying Wildlife and Fisheries Management with a focus on the fisheries aspect of the major. I enjoy hiking, fishing, and I am an avid rock climber. I plan on becoming a fisheries biologist after graduation.

 

 

 

 

 

Nathan

You can call me Nathan or Nate, it's your preference. I'm a born and bred Hoosier having grown up in central Indiana. I just graduated with a bachelor's degree in Biology with a concentration in Wildlife Biology and Conservation and a minor in Natural Resources from Ball State University-also in Indiana. I have an interest in forest ecology and wildlife management-especially with large mammals. I've always had a love for the outdoors. Since I was 5 years old I've known that I was going to work with animals and the outdoors in some way and I consider myself blessed that this has evolved into my life-long passion. My number one rule: if it moves, catch it. If it doesn't move, still catch it. Outside of the outdoors I am a music fanatic and you can usually find myself singing or playing something as I play an assortment of instruments.

 

Riley

My name is Riley Harris and I am originally from South Brunswick, New Jersey. I am currently a first-year at Bowdoin College in Maine, working towards majors in Environmental Studies and History. I have always been a lover of the outdoors, and I especially enjoy hiking, preferably with an adorable pitbull named Frankie by my side. I'm incredibly excited to work with the Squam Lakes Association this summer, as I hope to gain an appreciation for the amount of time and effort needed to protect the delicate ecosystems that encompass the watershed. When I'm not worried about the environment I enjoy playing rugby, watching Netflix, and engaging in late-night conversations with close friends. I can't wait to spend the summer experiencing the sights and sounds of lovely New Hampshire!

 


Steve

My name is Stephen Ramage. I grew up in Fairfax, Virginia. I am a rising Junior studying Fish and Wildlife Conservation, and I am considering minoring in Watershed Management at Virginia Tech. I want to pursue a career improving the quality of natural and restored habitats while educating others on the value of maintaining a healthy environment. I see myself working as a Wildlife Refuge Manager, Wildlife Technician, or Park Ranger. Ultimately, I want to serve the community by securing natural resources for future generations. Most of my free time is spent running in the Jefferson Forest, biking, swimming, gardening, playing with Riley (family’s dog), and eating large quantities of food. I am a member of VT Trail Running/Ultramarathon Club and the American Water Resources Association at Virginia Tech (Water Club). I am also part of a community stream monitoring program that monitors upstream and downstream of the proposed Atlantic Coast Pipeline crossing sites on Mill Creek and North Fork of the Roanoke River. Other interests of mine include cooking, playing Jenga, and creating the ugliest Easter egg. I am very excited to meet the other interns and begin working at Squam Lakes.

 

Tamara

Hey there! My name is Tamara Few. I was born and raised in Burnsville, Minnesota which is a suburb of the Twin Cities. I attended a community college for three years and received an Associates of Art degree before transferring to the University of Minnesota - Twin Cities in the fall of 2016. I am a rising senior pursuing a major in Fisheries, Wildlife, and Conservation Biology with an emphasis in Conservation Biology. I have been working in a local school district for the last three years with students ranging from 7th to 12th grade, but I am really excited to explore environmental education with young adults in my future. In my free time, you can find me with my nose in a book or outside doing anything from gardening to camping with friends. I have never visited the northeast before, so I am pumped to be able to live and learn in a new region of the county!

 

 

 

Katri, Intern Manager

I grew up spending two weeks every summer on Squam. Every year I eagerly waited for those two weeks of bliss. Who knew that years later I would not only be living on Squam, but would also be working to conserve the lake for future generations. The most gratifying aspect of  working for the SLA is meeting first-time visitors to the region. People are amazed by the beauty of the watershed and are genuinely interested in hearing about the conservation efforts taking place in the region. I can't wait to introduce Squam to the interns so that they may cultivate their own love for the region. For those interns who already know and love the region, I can't wait for them to experience the lake from a different perspective. There is much to be done and many tiring days ahead but all of the work is incredibly rewarding, especially when sharing the experience with others. 

Katri was an intern in 2016, and returns to the SLA as the Conservation Intern Manager in 2017. She is from Arlington, VA and graduated from Colby College in May 2015 with a degree in the field of Government.