Wheaton College Norton, Massachusetts

Stephany Perkins

The assignment. I will be working as an environmental extension worker for two years. My duties will consist of teaching and implementing sustainable agricultural practices, working as an environmental educator in local schools and promoting resource conservation as well as technologies that assist in this.

The inspiration. My trip to the Himalayas during the summer before my senior year at Wheaton actually really inspired me to join the Peace Corps. I used my stipend as a Balfour Scholar, and I worked as an environmental intern in a rural Himalayan village in India for two months.

Course connection. I definitely think that my methods in field biology class and my senior independent research will be helpful to my work in Tanzania because they challenged me to think outside the box, recognize problems, ask the right questions and find appropriate solutions.

Applied scholarship. For my senior honors thesis, I studied the distribution and movement patterns of the eastern coyote on a Cape Cod barrier beach. ( I know, a mouthful- but actually really interesting!) I conducted my study with Dr. Peter Auger on Sandy Neck beach in Barnstable, MA. Every weekend I would travel to the Cape and count coyote tracks. I then compared counts across months and habitats. Wildlife management has become an increasing concern on the Cape and so my data could be applied to future wildlife management plans at the park.