Another refuge intern, Jackie Blakely (right), and Sarika Khanwilkar work with the Hobe Sound Nature Center and their animals on a daily basis. Says Sarika: "Being similar in age and interests, working with Jackie is a unique opportunity to exchange tips and advice for career advancement."
Open Spaces is featuring monthly posts by Student Conservation Association (SCA) interns working to promote, protect and study wildlife on public lands all over the United States. Since 1957, SCA has been connecting young people from all backgrounds with life-changing, career-making conservation service opportunities. Learn how you can get involved at www.thesca.org. Six months ago Sarika Khanwilkar “began an unforgettable experience at the Hobe Sound National Wildlife Refuge [in Florida]. Aside from some quality time spent on Google Earth before my arrival, I had no prior knowledge of Hobe Sound or the National Wildlife Refuge System in general. I was initially enticed by the thought of palm trees, year-round sunshine, and a huge diversity of tropical wildlife, a sort of grand adventure that I had previously only dreamed of. Little did I know that what I would learn and experience as an SCA biology intern would go far beyond my expectations. The things I’ve seen and the skills I’ve picked up have truly broadened my perspective on what is means to work in conservation.”