Archives for March 2017

NASA Kiksapa Internship

Last week, I was informed of my acceptance into the NASA Tribal Kiksapa GIS Internship for the Summer of 2017!

I have been vying for this opportunity for the last year and a half. It is the opportunity of a lifetime to be able to intern for a NASA program. I can’t really believe it really happened. All the work, sweat and tears have finally paid off.

The program will be centering on GIS and Geospatial work. **GIS is Geographical Information Systems. A mapping program at its core. I started off last year as someone who was severely technologically handicapped— hahaha. I had to work extremely hard to rise to the occasion. I may have crashed one…or two… or three…computers in my quest but I mastered that stinking program.

My acceptance email came on a Tuesday. The Tuesday that will go down in my baby scrapbook thanks to my doting mother. Just kidding, about the baby book. However, she was probably more excited than I. I may be slightly deaf in one year after that fun phone call. My mom isn’t a science person and isn’t really down on our lingo but she listened as I squealed in excitement over the phone. She lives a state away so it’s our only form of communication. Yes, I know I’m a grown adult with my own children but my mom is the proud mother to a college student, regardless of my age.

Many students in Science don’t realize the potential of having a GIS background. A large amount of available jobs have it as a requirement. Plus, if I must admit, it’s super cool to be able to interpret data. It’s a pretty SWEEET piece of software.

Honestly, I would just like to thank my mentor who has religiously stood by my side and fixed my computers along the way. With only one sigh in exasperation! A herculean task! He’s the real hero.

 

Love,

N.K.

Coffee With A Side Of Science

 

I love Science. Particularly, the amazing field of Environmental Science. My office is currently a Wetland that I’m in the middle of Restoring. It was once drained so the area could be used for Agriculture. So I have been given the gift of restoring it to its Natural Beauty. And Beautiful it is. It’s a diamond in the rough but the area is rich in history and biodiversity.

This diamond in the rough has stolen a piece of my heart. The first time I visited the site I could feel the potential. It was hard to access and I may have tripped over the makeshift pallet bridge on my first excursion into the area… But once I reached the marooned dock, I could see the amazing critters that happily called it home. I even found some hard to find vegetation thriving in the area. The area had been repeatedly disturbed– but there it stood. A little broken and in need of some “Earth Doctoring” yet it was trying in vain to adapt itself to its drastically changing world around it. (Credit to my daughter for coining that phrase) So I picked up the reigns and headed it’s Remediation and Restoration Efforts. Through that decision, I found myself Rainboot deep in the scientific community. Because after that day I ran out, bought the cutest pair of rainboots I could and started the process of designing it’s revival.

My Wetland is located on the Haskell Indian Nations University Campus. It’s around 100 acres. Some of the Restoration efforts I have implemented have been a Prairie Restoration, Monarch Habitat Creation, and Sustainable Design Principles. I love that this job isn’t too Scientific Oriented but also Culturally Relevant. I have had the opportunity to connect with Tribal Entities that I had no idea existed. The United States Tribal Community is large and diverse. With so many different cultures associating with the natural wonders of each climate region. I found that I loved the Prairie work. Learning what simple plants and trees means to area tribes has been fascinating to learn. I hope to continue this work and catalog this process with you all.

Stay Tuned…

Love,

N.K