CO-OP Student of the Month of June 2019
Master of Science – Environmental Sustainability
From a young age, I was passionate about wildlife and nature. That passion led me to pursue a profession in conservation biology. As a Graduate student, I was extremely fortunate to be part of a program that offered two terms of CO-OP placement. When I was given the opportunity to work as a Species at Risk Officer in the Species at Risk (SAR) Program at Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO) during both placements, I could not have been more excited.
The SAR Program under the Ecosystem Management Directorate at DFO is responsible for implementing the provisions of the SARA in order to protect and recover aquatic species at risk in Canada. During this placement, I had the opportunity to learn about government operations while carrying out my own project on threats to aquatic species at risk. This project aimed to produce a common threat language for SARA-listed aquatic species for use in the development of threat-response standards to parameterize known threats to groups of species (e.g., marine fishes, marine mammals) or ecosystems for application across taxa and recovery scenarios. I was also tasked with integrating threat data into species at risk distribution data using GIS software to produce maps to help identify priority areas for the implementation of recovery measures.
Following my placement, I was very fortunate to be offered student bridging into an indeterminate position with the SAR Program. I look forward to improving the status of Canada’s at-risk species for years to come!