When the rain started pouring down, I didn’t make any move to find cover. We had just returned from a sweltering, dusty, who-knows-how-many-miles-long hike through the Sierra Nevada mountains, so the brisk thunderstorm was a welcome surprise.
Our intern cohort (plus several advisors) had scaled slopes through a charred forest in search of the vast meadows we knew to be at just a slightly higher elevation. The forest had undergone a controlled burn in an attempt to protect and restore biodiversity—as fire clears long-dead organic matter, it creates room for new life to recycle those materials into their own success. As the burn flickers on, the older, larger trees continue thriving and supporting other life, from their roots to their canopies.Continue reading
Six forty-five in the morning. Light has barely touched the sky, and I’m sitting in AP biology class surrounded by my half-asleep friends as we shuffle through our immense binders for fresh note paper. Our teacher mills around the front of the classroom prepping slides, video links, and in-class demos to fill our tenth-grade brains with exciting new knowledge (massive shoutout, she was/is the best).
During those high school biology days, I clung to the goal of having all the right answers at the drop of a question (yeah, yeah, I was another wannabe Hermione Granger, so what?). My favorite part of the class was when our teacher would ask us about connections– what other parts of the body may this impact? What other portions of the ecosystem are interwoven here? How may genes influence entire populations of animals? Before this class, I hadn’t considered any of these questions and more. Continue reading
“You can’t go backwards in your knowledge because you will learn something new every single day, whether you like it or not.”
That’s what my biology teacher constantly told us; even more so as the dreaded AP test rounded the corner.
Taking AP bio has changed me. First of all, my time management skill levels have risen a lot. There’s a ton of material to learn- lack of organization (and patience) in this particular course is quite nearly certain doom. Second, I really love to learn. Before, yes, I did enjoy picking up things, and school wasn’t that much of a bore for me, but I didn’t feel the actual urge to absorb more and more material.
(Sidenote: I actually think I’m learning songs in my music class faster because I’m going through New-Knowledge-Withdrawal or something. Huh.)