Originally, I’m from the concrete jungle that is Chicago, which makes me an anomaly in my family, as the only one who really loves nature. It’s been my passion since I was a little girl drawing pictures of exotic animals wishing I could be a National Geographic explorer. I took a biology class in high school that truly made me realize I can make a career and a difference in this field (and get paid for it too!). Currently, I’m pursuing my M.S. in Wildlife, Aquatic, and Wildlands Science at Texas Tech University. Being someone who wants to leave her mark on this world, I have been studying endangered species. That passion of wanting to help also trickles into my personal life. I would love to influence my community in the most positive ways by contributing whatever I can. For my internship with Ogallala Commons, I am building a community garden in a Lubbock neighborhood richly diverse, with a lot of socio-economic difficulties. We believe this is the perfect area to place a community garden full of healthy fruits and vegetables. Having the neighborhood being more likeable will create a more inviting outdoor environment to combat crime problems and unite the residents. The benefits of having the community garden will be an opportunity for social outreach by gathering the community, provide delicious and nutritious food, engaging youth, learning about the importance of sustainability and gardening, and being able to facilitate a relaxing connection to food and the land. I will be residing in Lubbock for the next five years pursuing my Ph.D. so I plan to see this project grow for a long while. My long-term goal is to continue in the path of academia and become a professor working with endangered species. The Ogallala Commons internship can really benefit this goal by providing teaching experience, help me meet passionate people like myself, expand my horizons, and make a local change that will inspire others to keep the momentum going.