2011 Career Discovery Internship Program
Naira de Gracia
My name is Naira de Gracia but I usually go by Nai. I grew up moving around the world. My dad is from Spain and my mom is Mexican American. I was born in Santa Barbara and left when I was six months old, to Spain, and from then on I've lived in Mexico, Chile, Argentina, South Africa and Egypt. My experiences with nature have been as varied as the cultures I grew up in. There were the rolling mountains and savannah plains of South Africa, the glaciers and marshes of Argentina, the cordillera of Chile, the white and red desert of Egypt and Spain's picturesque forests and meadows. I always tried to get outside and get a taste of the wild side of wherever I was living, since we always settled in the capital cities.
After finishing school in Egypt, I went to a small liberal arts school in California, near where my mom's family lived, called Pomona College. I'm studying Environmental Analysis but am considering a minor if not a major in biology. I don't have many extra curricular activities, but in my free time I go camping and hiking in the surrounding national parks. I also work at my school's organic farm.
I applied to be a CDIP intern because I wanted to have the chance to see secluded natural areas of the U.S. and start my involvement in conservation. I love the outdoors and wanted to spend a summer surrounded by nature. I'm hoping to meet more cool and interesting people, help out by doing my part in projects and learn about the ecosystems of Maine, where I am stationed. This experience will also help me decide what career to pursue in the future- I have been contemplating being a wildlife biologist. My career goal is not to work in an office, and while I realize that that will probably be necessary, I hope conservation can get me out into the wilderness.
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