Alumni Profiles - Meet Rebekka Schultz
Hometown: Havertown, PA
Year of Graduation: 2008
Major: Wildlife Conservation
Minor: Landscape Horticulture
Undergraduate Campus Involvement:
Co-President and Co-Founder of UD’s chapter of the Wildlife Society, Ag Ambassadors, Alpha Zeta, volunteer at the Delaware Nature Society in the Stream Technical Monitoring Program
Current Position of Employment or Education:
Education Program Coordinator, Wyck Historic House and Garden,
Master’s of Arts in Education candidate with a concentration in Environmental Education at Arcadia University with expected graduation in 2012
Describe your best Ag experience:
Studying abroad in Tanzania in January 2007 is the most lasting memory I have. The trip was incredible and I truly believe that I returned home with a different perspective on life, community, and conservation.
Which Ag course was your favorite and why?
Choosing to major in wildlife conservation at UD seemed the natural choice given my affinity for the outdoors. Towards the end of my time at UD, I began looking for opportunities that would allow me to inspire and connect others to the environment. I took summer positions at the Schuylkill Center for Environmental Education, worked as a teacher-naturalist, and interned in the education department at the Morris Arboretum of the University of Pennsylvania.
Tell us about your current position or program of study and what led you to that field.
I am currently working as Education Program Coordinator at Wyck Historic House and Garden in Philadelphia, PA. At Wyck I teach environmental, agriculture, and history-themed lessons to students pre-kindergarten through high school, serve as camp director, and develop continuing education programs, symposia, festivals, and tours for adults and families. Teaching environmental education in Philadelphia has increased my interest in urban environments and urban agriculture. Most of my current work utilizes an urban farm as a context in which to teach about the environment. My students are learning where their food comes from, how it’s grown, and making a personal connection with the environment that sustains them.
How did your College of Ag experiences prepare you for your current job or post-graduate education?
I loved that the wildlife conservation major exposed me to a range of fields, such as mammalogy, ornithology, entomology, and botany. This range of exposure has increased my ability to teach my students about the fascinating interrelationships that exist in the environment.
What advice do you have for students interested in your field?
Network, network, network! You hear it time and time again because it’s true. Volunteer, apply for internships, work for professors, and take summer jobs related to your field. Getting as much experience as possible not only helps you decide what you want to do, but it will build your reputation and increase your chances of landing a job after graduation.