Three Prince Rupert Northwest Community College (NWCC) students will be able to get out and work in their chosen field this summer, due to financial help from the Pacific Salmon Foundation.
The foundation announced last week that $31,000 will be contributed for bursaries and Pacific salmon conservation projects in Prince Rupert and Terrace.
NWCC students Haley Crozier, Cheri Herbert and Jamie Martz all won the Pacific Salmon Foundation’s Stewardship Community Bursary Program awards and received funding to help their endeavours to study and work in salmon conservation and aquatic stewardship. TransCanada Corporation helped make the bursaries possible, with donations to the foundation totalling more than $330,000 since 2014 for grants, bursaries and salmon data collection in northwest B.C.
Crozier, an Applied Coastal Ecology (ACE) student said Prince Rupert is one of the best places to learn about salmon conservation, thanks to its myriad opportunities to get out, explore and discover more about what makes her program so neat.
The student detailed her extensive volunteer experience in her application, including volunteering with Oldfield Creek Hatchery to set up and clean tanks, record water temperature, top the feeders and more, before releasing the fish back into the stream. She has worked in areas such Kloiya Bay, Diana Creek, Oona River and Silver Creek.
“The elementary schools here have a program with the hatchery where they get the eggs and set up tanks, so the kids could see the salmon develop and learn about the salmon’s lifestyle,” she added.
Martz worked along the Oona River as well, writing in her application the importance of wild salmon in her life.
“The plight of wild salmon is a real concern to me and I take the work that has to be done to protect this resource seriously … I anticipate a career, both professionally and voluntarily, in the stewardship of our oceans, streams and forests,” stated Martz.
“Volunteers are a critical component of salmon recovery in British Columbia and it’s important that young people get the support they need for a well-rounded educational experience that includes volunteerism. Oftentimes, student volunteers bring new science and conservation methods learned in the classroom to the programs they volunteer for outside the classroom,” said Pacific Salmon Foundation president and CEO Brian Riddell.