Monday, August 29, 2016

My Summer with Save The Bay

By Communications Intern Abbey Greene

As a summer intern in the Communications Department for the last four months, I filmed videos about sharks and octopuses, conducted podcast interviews, wrote press releases to the media about new themes each month at the aquarium and more. The entire experience was extremely educational, and every task taught me something new about the world of communication.

However, one day in particular really stuck with me. Early on in my internship, I worked with fourth graders from John Wickes School in Warwick. These kids took a field trip to Save The Bay headquarters in Providence, and I filmed their day, even interviewing a few of them. For some, it was their first time out on a boat, and their jaws dropped when the boat started to pick up speed. Many squealed and laughed around the deck from railing to railing, leaning over the edge of the boat and letting the sea spray hit their faces. Seeing their eyes light up and capturing their joy on camera was really amazing for me. They wanted to learn so much from Save The Bay staff, and every single child was engaged in the activities. The kids wanted to know everything they could about the Bay, from the water’s salinity to the Bay’s animal life.

After the students pulled up the trawl net, I watched them run to the touch tanks and shout with excitement as they pushed aside seaweed and found hermit crabs. The kids grabbed their friends and dragged them over to see the fish and other sea life. I realized these children do not take the Bay for granted like so many other people do. Every single living creature was treated with care, carefully handled by each child as they ‘oo’-ed and ‘ah’-ed over them. The students kept pointing to new finds, whether it was an animal or a shore bird flying over head. The fourth graders saw how cool a flounder was and how fascinating a spider crab can be. Living in this busy, technical world, we can easily forget how magical the environment really is. These kids have not forgotten yet. I was honored that those fourth graders reminded me of the environment’s magic.

I want to continue working in the field of communications and pursue a career as an environmental reporter. I want to remind people of the importance of the natural world and educate the public about it, just like Save The Bay educates people about Narragansett Bay. I could write articles, appear on television or work online. I will graduate in May, and although my first step in my career path is not completely clear, I am sure of one thing: Save The Bay taught me what is important to me— reminding people of the magic nature can bring to their lives, just as a group of fourth graders from John Wickes Elementary School reminded me.