When I first decided to take co-op for a credit, I had no idea where I was going to go for a placement. I have always been interested in environmental issues but I never heard of a place near me that dealt with those kinds of problems. When I was searching up the possible places for me to attend for two hours each morning, I was looking for a placement that would teach me something about a topic I’m interested in. That’s when I found ACAP. I started in February and each day since I’ve learned something new, whether it was figuring out how to use a drill to put up the new coat racks or doing water quality monitoring in great locations where I had a blast.
Midway through my time with ACAP I began planning a climate strike/cleanup at my local town hall (Rothesay). It went over really well and I plan to have many more in the coming months. I met great friend and mentor Lynaya Astephen through ACAP and she has helped me and given me amazing connections to this line of work which I am forever in her debt; none of this would have been possible if I didn’t do my co-op term here.
Before this semester I barely knew how to garden, the employees here put their trust in me to get the seeds ready for the indoor containers right off the bat. Even though they didn’t turn out as good as I hoped it was still good considering my experience. It even inspired me to start my own garden at home!
My favourite week here was definitely the water quality monitoring just because I loved being out in the field and on the water. They were great teachers and let me do lots of things which I really enjoyed because some places only let you observe but I was allowed to conduct data which was amazing. They told me all about the tools and equipment and treated me like one of them. Despite falling in the mud and getting stuck several times it was still a fantastic morning.
Even on slow days inside when everyone was busy, I could always check my inbox and there would be a fish research paper waiting, which I thought was great and I really enjoyed reading them. I’m going into my first year of university this fall and am taking aquatic resources and I feel this has helped me tremendously prepare for that. Now I know some important things about this kind of work that I have experienced instead of just reading about it.
I am very grateful to everyone at ACAP for showing me how much fun this job industry is (at least at their office). I know now that I would love to do this kind of work later in life and that wouldn’t have been possible without them. I highly suggest volunteering with them on future projects and I promise you will not regret it; you will have fun and will be making a difference.