On June 11, 2019, Environment for the Americas’ (EFTA) Latino Outreach Coordinator, and I completed a site visit at the Rocky Mountain National Park in Estes Park, Colorado. We were about an hours drive from Boulder, Colorado, where EFTA’s office is located, when the road turned into a two way and traffic crept along. We thought this was unusual, especially early on a Monday morning. The Park has become so popular, it is not unusual that traffic is heavy to the entrance.
We passed Mt. Olympus and Estes Lake on our way up to the Beaver Meadows Visitor Center, just at the park’s entrance. Here we met with our first intern of the day, Alejandro Ramos. Alejandro is an EFTA intern in the Latino Heritage Internship Program. He traveled from California for the position.
We sat down and had lunch outside of the Visitor Center while we spoke with Alejandro about the park. He was an intern at the Park in 2018, and now he’s back to further what he has been learning about ichthyology. He also works closely with the interpretation staff, all of whom had high praises for him. From his colleagues, we learned that he is a smart, committed, and engaging young man. But we all knew that! I took Dalia’s lead as she spoke with his supervisors and asked him questions about his internship, his work, and his living situation. We were happy to hear that all is going smoothly.
After we wrapped up our visit with Alejandro, we headed over to McGraw Ranch to meet our Mosaics in Science intern, Vishva Nalamalapu.
McGraw Ranch is a former ranch house which was once used as a base for horses to rest and while workers restocked for their projects in the backcountry. Each of us grabbed a rocking chair and headed for the porch of the ranch house. There, we got to know each other talked more about the project that Vishva will be working on throughout the summer. Though her primary focus is to assist with all citizen science projects in Rocky Mountain National Park, her primary focus will be the glaciers that are located in the park. Her work is to produce an institutional memory project that encapsulates a timeline of past research and scientific papers about these glaciers. Ultimately, a story map will also be created to be used by new employees, so that they may easily understand the history of this park.
I feel Vishva will do great in her role because she has two amazing supervisors, Carissa and Todd, at her side to lean on whenver she needs help. I am excited to hear more about her project this August.