- Author: Stephanie Collins
Internships are a proven way to gain relevant knowledge, skills, and experience while establishing important connections in the field. Learning doesn't just take place in the classroom — participating in internships can provide a wealth of benefits such as:
- Applying classroom learning in professional environments
- Gain exposure to a chosen field
- Establish critical networking connections
- Gain coveted work experience
DREC is partnering with a USDA program entitled: Water Resources Experiential Learning for USDA Careers. The strategic goal of this project is to measurably increase student research skills that ensure our national forests and private working lands are conserved, restored, and made more resilient to climate change, while simultaneously enhancing the sustainability of the Nation's water resources.
The internships provide an experiential approach to learning in the field of water resources and/or watershed management which helps students gain real-world experience in natural resource protection while developing new knowledge, skills, and abilities in problem-solving from a watershed perspective.
Mariana Gonzalez is currently interning at DREC. She is in her third year at San Diego State University-Imperial Valley Campus. She is working toward a bachelor's degree in mathematics with a minor in public administration.
During the internship, Mariana says she hopes to increase her overall knowledge in agricultural processes. She hopes to gain a deep understanding of agricultural research and its impacts. Mariana will be working with DREC's Farm Smart program and feels this will give her experience in working with K-12 students and developing K-12 curriculum. In all its programs, Farm Smart teaches about water, weather, sustainability and other natural resources. Through her duties in the Farm Smart program, Mariana will have the opportunity to help students develop an understanding of water and water resources through STEM activities. DREC staff will be working with Mariana to develop a capstone project that is multifaceted and serves as a culminating experience during the internship. As she explores her chosen topic in the area of water resources and management, she will be challenged to think critically and apply investigative skills.
Mariana helping kids with produce picked at the Farm Smart U-pick up garden.