Biologists with the Missouri Department of Conservation's (MDC) Big River and Wetland Field Station will go with the flow at this weekend's Southeast Missouri State University (SEMO) Homecoming parade. The MDC biologists have joined with members of SEMO's Biology Department in a cooperative partnership to further research efforts on Missouri's big rivers and wetlands while also helping to prepare SEMO students for future careers.
The community can get a good look at the biologists and students during SEMO's homecoming parade as they wave from a large river trawl boat.
"This cooperative helps us to further research efforts on our big rivers and wetlands and it's also a chance for these students to gain experience that will help to jumpstart future careers," said Frank Nelson, an MDC Wetland Ecologist with the Big River and Wetland Field Station.
Nelson said there are a lot of advantages to the cooperative work. It enables collaboration between the two organizations which creates a larger pool of resources to draw from. MDC staff benefit from interactions with university faculty and SEMO students benefit from field training for future job opportunities. He said the contact with the Conservation Department also helps direct students to opportunities with the department such as part time jobs, internships, and limited project funding.
Within SEMO's biology department, the Wildlife Society Chapter is made up of a group of students that are active in volunteering and promoting Missouri's wildlife resources. There are 44 students involved with SEMO's Wildlife Society Chapter from seven different majors across the university.
For more information about SEMO's Wildlife Society Chapter, go online to www.wildlife.org/who-we-are/mission. For more information about the Missouri Department of Conservation, go to www.mdc.mo.gov.