My name is Jacob Villalpando. I just started my new internship at the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore as a pollinator steward. This week was mainly training about the rules and ethics of the park. Working for a federal agency is a different job experience than other experiences I have had. This was the first time that I had to have a key card to log on any computer. My mentor laid out the plan for the summer and I am more excited to get started. Mainly this week we scouted for vernal pools in the woods for another intern’s project. These pools are a type of seasonal wetland that is a wet habitat during the wet season and dried out during the dry season.
On my first day I got to try raspberry cheesecake french toast for lunch. My mentor has been showing other interns and me the layout of the park and what to expect in surveying these areas. My main task for right now is to read primary literature about native bees species and start figuring out what areas in the park would be good sites to sample. Overall, it was a great first week and can’t wait to see what’s next.