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Science-based Summers of Adventures

Hello! My name is Emma Frances Doherty and I am the 2022 St. Lawrence summer intern at the Henry’s Fork Foundation (HFF). I was born in Boston and have lived for most of my life in New Hampshire where I have become enamored with the absolute beauty of nature, animals, and the stunning white mountains we visit every summer. As the only non-environmental major, I was worried I might not be able to contribute the same level of knowledge and insight as my fellow friends, but I’ve begun to realize how important the difference in backgrounds, knowledge bases and personal experiences are to creating the dynamic environment here at HFF.

At SLU I am majoring in global studies, an interdisciplinary major that encourages and teaches you how to look critically at historic and current global practices as well as the institutions that benefit from them. Within the global studies major I am choosing my geographical focus to be on southeast Asia, as I am going to go abroad in Thailand this coming spring where I am doing a sustainable development program on the environmental or public health track. In the second part of the semester, I get to work with grassroots organizations for my internship which is a huge part of why I wanted to come to HFF, a nonprofit only as powerful and effective as it is because of the strength of their community partnerships. The second part of the Global studies track is choosing a topical focus, and since I have completed two, both environmental justice and peace studies, I still must formally select one. Additionally, I am working to fulfil both a sociology minor and a public health minor as I have been discovering that a life course in non-profit work seems to be what will be most fulfilling for me.

At HFF my project is a comprehensive review of the internship program which was established in 1989. I am compiling the data from the past decades of the program to see how previous interns experienced this program, while also considering diversity and socio-economic classifications (SEC) when exploring barriers or ways the program could improve in the future! Today HFF’s internship program connects both undergraduate and high school students from around the country with professional one-on-one mentorship and independent projects for 10-12 weeks in the summer. However, this wasn’t always the organization of the program as it has changed radically, especially within the past 10 years! I can’t wait to get in touch with alumni of the program and learn how this organization has shaped their future just as I foresee it shaping mine!

Now when it comes to our year of interns, driving across the country to a town with less than 2,000 people for the entire summer would feel a whole lot more daunting if it weren’t for the incredible people, I get to spend every day with. As an all-girl crew, it’s always been great to have friends to play cards, go on evening explorations of the town, or even get absolutely hailed on at Mesa Falls with. We visited Big Springs, had our first float adventure, went to an eventful Chukars game, enjoyed the Juneteenth celebration in Rexburg, and even went country swing dancing at BYU-Idaho! This weekend will be my first big adventure since my dad and I road-tripped from NH to the badlands and on to the Tetons as I am visiting a friend in Bozeman! But best of all I’ve been able to find a pupper to pet just about every day and can’t wait to find more furry friends!


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