This is the 2nd in a series of millenials who are seeking careers in environmental studies. Marra Clay is a Hopkins School District (MN) graduate. Below is Marra’s story:
This summer I have an internship through the Environmental Studies department at Whitman College, where I am a junior Chemistry-Environmental Studies major. I am working as an environmental photographer for the Grand Canyon Trust, a large environmental organization. Specifically, I have been with the Utah Forests Program photographing the landscape of southern Utah.
My interest in nature started when I was very little. I was always the kid who liked to play with bugs. I think that this interest was initially sparked by the beautiful colors and patterns on bugs. I loved looking for macro scale vibrant beings.
It’s discouraging studying the environment in our quickly deteriorating world. I also struggle with the feeling of hopelessness that many environmentalists must battle. What often keeps me inspired is talking with other individuals who have devoted much of their lives to the environment. On-the-side, I am also a journalist, and I have always loved interviewing people in my community, both to hear their stories and to see it with my own eyes. It amazes me how talking with one inspired individual can make me also feel inspired, and the passion for the environment can spread like wildfire, if you just have one person who is determined to make a change.
The plans for my future change from day to day. As of now, I would love to work for High Country News (a magazine that highlights environmental problems in the West) and then eventually pursue environmental law. However, I would also love to participate in an environmentally focused Peace Corps program. Before I settle on a career I want to take the time to apply some of my skills and interests around the world to help other nations in their pursuit of sustainability.
Readers respond to Marra’s story:
Mary Serdar: What an inspiring story. Marra, you were always an exceptional student. Your dancing was amazing and what about those highly designed tennis shoes I saw at your graduation party?! Now, here you are in the vast beauty of the wilderness with all your passion for life and amazing eye for photography.
Love and hugs and your very being is inspiring to us all.
Marra…congratulations!!! for following your childhood interest in nature…and bright bugs!
You are right when you say that sometimes we may feel hopelessness, but is always important to remember that we are not alone. If we just go out to the world, we’ll find many people in love with our planet that we can learn from…and in action to keep it healthy, in balance and protected from future irreversible harm.
Always believe in our own dreams and trust others that are passionate for the same cause