Less than a year ago, I was selecting classes for my spring 2018 semester with the intent to graduate. I was 2 courses away from graduation. Due to the unavailability of a second class in spring and summer, graduation was postponed until fall.

What was I going to do with a full summer gap? I thought to myself how I would love to do a cross country road-trip to explore the different national parks I had been studying in my coursework. I wanted to see all of the geological features I had been learning about as a geology major. How I would fund it was another dream.

Mosaics in Science appeared like a diamond in the rough. An e-mail read

The positions that you applied for have been filled…

My heart sank when my eyes gazed across the first words.

…but we do have a new position through this program in Mount Rainier National Park. It is an Interpretation position. I would like to set up a pre- interview with you for this position. It would be a phone call, tomorrow, time TBD.

“Mt. Rainier!? Oh my gosh!” I thought. “I have no idea what an interpretation position means, but it’s Mt. Rainier!”

Going to the other corner of the continental U.S. seemed daunting, but it didn’t last long. How could I pass up the opportunity to spend the summer in an area foreign to me? My dream of doing a cross country road-trip began to unfold.

Not only did my dreams to explore come to be, I also found a deep love I did not know existed for interpretation and for education in general. A quote from Dr. Seuss resonates and summarizes this special experience:  “You’re off to great places! Today is your day! Your mountain is waiting, so get on your way!”

Posing as a tree on the Tahoma Creek suspension bridge. Photo by Sav Sanford.

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