The Environmental Policy and Management (EPM) graduate program is a stellar gateway to establish a thorough knowledge base and skillset for a career in restoration ecology. My undergraduate study abroad experience in New Zealand sparked my interest in natural resource management. I was awed by the Maori indigenous populations as I learned about their deep reverence for natural landscape, water, and the force sustaining life. Further, I observed how the indigenous inhabitants channel ancient philosophy to support the environment. The Maori study information, passed down by ancestors, about their homeland. Strengthening relationship to a specific place empowers them to forage certain natural healthcare resources and show others how to use the materials as a remedy for various challenges to immunity. Moreover, my experience apprenticing on small-scale, organic, family farms emphasized, before planting a seed for growth, it is important to understand the sub-climate. That being said, before diving into ecological restoration, I need to develop a thorough understanding of the field. The EPM program’s emphasis on written discussion and research projects builds my repertoire of ecological restoration strategy and sharpens my ability to articulate it well. The result is effective collaboration in conducting efficient operations which nourish the planet’s health.
The EPM program aligns with my career aspirations. My goal is to plan and supervise forestry projects. With the graduate-level educational background specific to environmental policy, I am going to be well-equipped to negotiate conditions of contracts and monitor results of forestry activities so a project adheres to government regulations. A specific project may entail, for example, determining methods of cutting and removing timber with minimal environmental damage or monitoring growth of new seedlings. The EPM program prepares me for the journey.