I’ve never been the person to broadcast my life on social media. I always found it a little obnoxious. Whether its twitter, facebook, instagram, tumblr, or a blogpost, it just seemed like a way to brag, or seek approval from complete strangers. I can admit I’m guilty of posting selfies and cheesy photos of my boyfriend and dog, but those have always been restricted to 200 people I consider to be my friends.
It wasn’t until I started my career in conservation biology that this feeling began to change. I walked through the doors of Columbia University on my first day of graduate school, and I realized I had no idea what I was doing. How do I make people passionate about what I do? Will my research make a difference? Do I even deserve to be here? I realized I had all this doubt and insecurity about starting this next chapter of my life because I had never heard someone in my field share their story. I didn’t take the time to ask others how they dealt with graduate school, what experiences they had and what they learned along the way. So that is why I am here! I want to share what I have experienced, good and bad, when starting off my career in conservation biology, and hopefully share what I have learned along the way.
I want to start off by briefly fintroducing myself (I really like marine puns … they will be used quite often, so I apologize in advance). I am currently in my second year of graduate school at Columbia University in NYC, completing my Master of Arts in Conservation Biology. My thesis work focuses on manta ray behaviour and conservation in Papua New Guinea and Fiji. I am from Canada, and have lived in Toronto most of my life, so get used to me apologizing multiple times in a post for absolutely no reason. I will stop here, because if I keep going I will get into my hobbies and personality quirks, and this post will feel more like a dating profile.
Thank you for reading, and I hope you stay for future blog posts 🙂
– Shannon Murphy
What did one ocean say to the other ocean? Nothing, they just waved.