Zac’s Video Story: Master’s of Science in Environmental Sciences & Policy

Zac grew up hiking, camping and fishing and has a great appreciation for the natural world. At UW-Green Bay, he is pursuing a Master of Science in Environmental Sciences and Policy to learn knowledge and skills to make a positive impact in a world that’s constantly changing. He appreciates both sides of the program, which features critical lab experiences and shows how environmental data and information gained can be used to enact real policy changes. Zac’s goal is to save native species and their habitats to create a sustainable future for generations to come.

[Note to reader: this video contains information about the Master’s of Science in Environmental Sciences and Policy]

Transcript: I grew up spending a lot of time outside. My family were really into hiking and camping and fishing. I just got this great appreciation for the natural world and growing up it’s something that I knew that I wanted to do. I wanted to do my part in terms of protecting what we have for future generations and getting this degree was a great step in that process of being able to actually make some positive change in a world that’s changing quite a lot. The program I think has been really great. In terms of the the labs I’ve been a part of, Aquatic Invertebrates has been great. Really allows me to get some hands-on experience in terms of learning the minutia of these different critters and when I go out into the field have an idea when I look at a stream and a sample of saying oh this is a pretty healthy stream or maybe a more degraded stream. So, that holistic experience that we get through this lab has been very very helpful. A great part of the graduate student research here is the fact that it’s all interconnected. And I’ve been fortunate enough to to help out with some uh some of the lake Whitefish work going on here and some of the Northern Pike work going on here in Green Bay. Essentially as graduate students were tasked with the research and monitoring design for Aquatic Invertebrates in Wequiock Creek. Doing an active restoration uh we want to get some data that says this is where the creek is now and then after we do our restoration and monitor throughout that process this is how it’s gotten better or how it’s changed over time and I feel like we’re going to make a demonstrable impact on on restoration here on university land is pretty cool. The policy side of the course really takes what we do in terms of our science, figuring out how the data and the information and the conclusions get out of that bubble and then get used by people who actually craft policy. And I think that what I learned here will absolutely help catapult me forward into to where I go next, native fish conservation, working for a natural resource agency but as long as I’m working to conserve native species and their habitats, I’ll that consider that a life well-lived.

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