My first goal that I hoped to achieve was being able to communicate with my co-workers. Over the internship, I have been able to speak with my co-workers, and get to know them better. I talk to two of my co-workers everyday, and work with them at the same place no matter what we are doing. We are all together when we are out in the fields or inside doing computer work. My second goal is to be able to have more of a leadership role and help my co-workers. My goal was also to be able to be trusted with certain projects. I was able to help my co-workers when doing computer work, and also was able to do certain projects that were mine alone. My third goal was to improve at my networking skills. I was able to meet new people while on the job, and even at the retreat, I met many new friends.
Over the internship period, I had many different projects that I worked on. One such project was creating a database for many grants that deal with other water projects. They wanted me to make this database so when they had to look up info on a certain grant, it would be easy to look up. I was able to finish this database within about two months. I did have some difficulty in the beginning when I tried looking up the information. Over time, I was able to get better at it. I didn’t really fail at all while creating the database.
Another project I worked on as an intern was taking water samples. To do this, we had to go out, and drive all over La Junta, Rocky Ford, and McClave, Colorado to get the water out of many wells. It was difficult to get the hang of it at the start, but now, it is a piece of cake. We then send the water samples off to a lab to be analyzed, and the lab we send them to sends us the results back. When taking water samples, we also measured certain properties of the water, and recorded them down for another database that my co-worker Chase worked on.
One of the best perks during the internship was being able to learn how to fly a drone. We used the drone to take pictures of fields and other areas to either use for later or for mapping purposes. The first time I used the drone, I was a bit nervous because I felt that if I made one wrong move, it would plummet to the ground. Over time though, I was able to stop worrying so much about it, and be relaxed with flying it.
My co-workers and I had two ponds that we had to regulate during the internship. We had to make sure that the right amount of water was being taken from the canal/ditch into the pond, so we were able to replenish the groundwater that farmers used for their crops.
One of the last projects that we worked on during the internship was soil samples. We use a digging rod to collect the soil in the ground, and then put it into a bag. After collecting all of the soil samples we send off the soil to be tested for results.The results help us determine what is in the soil in certain fields. Taking soil samples was hard work. At every field, we had to take around 10 to 20 samples, and each sample took around 15 minutes. I didn’t get easier over time, and when taking the samples, it was really hot.
When looking back at the internship, I had a lot of fun and many learning experiences. Being able to work and learn at the Lower Arkansas Valley Water Conservancy District was a great experience for me, and I learned a lot. My bosses were all very understanding, and gave me lots of opportunities to do something that I had never done before.
At the Ogallala Commons Retreat, I was able to meet new friends, learn about Ogallala Commons, and meet my supervisors. I learned a lot about what was expected of me during my internship. I heard from many guest speakers, and took a few things away from them. My supervisors were very helpful and understanding if something happened, and I couldn’t turn something in on time.
Looking towards my future, I think this was a great learning experience for me. I can use what I learned from this experience, such as creating databases, to looking at chemical results, and use it in the future. I would be able to use it in the future because I want to go into something that deals with math and chemistry. Working for Ogallala Commons was fun, and I hope to do it again soon. Thank you.