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Meet our Summer 2019 Naturalist Interns!

Meet our Summer 2019 Naturalist Interns!

By Emlyn Crocker
June 21, 2019

Nature Up North is pleased to introduce our 4 summer naturalist interns, Emily, Val, Grace and Lydia. We are thrilled to have them working with us this summer to bring more public events, citizen science, and outdoor fun to the North Country community. Read below to learn more about each of them and to hear what they've been getting up to so far!

Emily and Val

Photos: Emily Gerber (left), Val Maldonado (right).

Emily Gerber is a rising senior at St. Lawrence University majoring in Conservation Biology and minoring in Creative Writing. Growing up exploring the landscapes of Lancaster, Pennsylvania sparked her love for the outdoors. She now calls Odessa, Florida home and has continued to enjoy time outside through hiking, kayaking, and finding a nice shady tree to sit under and read a book. Emily is excited to share her passion for nature and the outdoors through her role as a Nature Up North summer naturalist intern. Emily is looking forward to exploring more of the North Country this summer while working in the area. She's also excited to lead paddles and hikes for the community/

Val Maldonado is a junior studying Psychology and Environmental Studies at St. Lawrence University. She is from Ponce, Puerto Rico and enjoys spending time relaxing at the beach, paddle boarding and taking pictures of the world around her! Val is looking forward to all of the wonderful adventures the North Country has to offer. She is excited to explore around with community members, and in programs such as paddles. 

Grace and Lydia

Photos: Grace Hines (left), and Lydia Dwyer (right).

Grace Hines is a rising sophomore studying geology and biology at Sewanee: The University of the South in Tennesse. She recently moved to Canton from Westminster M.D. in 2018. Some of her favorite activities include exploring the Cumberland Plateau region and squirrel watching. Grace looks forward to leading many of Nature Up North's water quality sampling events this summer and is also excited to lead a workshop on building bee houses. 

Lydia Dwyer, from Syracuse, New York, is currently a senior at St. Lawrence University studying biology and Spanish. When not attending school, Lydia enjoys spending time outdoors hiking, swimming, and learning about the environment! Lydia is very excited for her first summer in the North Country and plans to explore the area more thoroughly. She is also looking forward to teaching about the environment through programs about wild foraging and plant identification. 

In just a few short weeks, our interns have already helped sample water quality on several local rivers, led programs for k-12 students from Massena, Canton, St. Regis, Gouverneur, and Colton-Pierrepont, helped out at Indian Creek Nature Center's annual Conservation Field Days, and helped organize several community campfires and paddles. Here are some highlights:


Val works with 9th grade living environment students from St. Regis Central School to identify macroinvertebrates during a field trip.



Lydia talks with students at Colton-Pierrepont Central School about environmental stewardship during their annual Earth Week celebration.


Grace ICNC

At Indian Creek Nature Center's Conservation Field Days, we led activities on pond life and tree identification. Here, Grace explores the contents of a net with students.


Emily works with students from Bruston-Moira to collect macroinvertebrates from a local brook.

By Emlyn Crocker
Canton, New York

Emlyn Crocker is Project Manager of Nature Up North. An enthusiastic hiker and naturalist, she also enjoys skiing, cycling, and the thrill of an unexpected adventure in the woods.