As the 2017-18 academic year comes to a close, we at the Central Upper Peninsula and Northern Michigan University Archives have to say goodbye to our graduating seniors: Stefan Nelson and Lydia Henning. So we’ll be bidding a fond “hail and farewell” to them by giving each of them their own sendoff here on the blog. This week’s spotlight is on Stefan.
Stefan Nelson came to Northern in the fall of 2014 after graduating from Stillwater Area High School in Stillwater, Minnesota. According to him, he chose to attend Northern for three reasons: “First off, it had the major I was interested in – Fisheries and Wildlife Management. Secondly, it was a medium-sized school, not huge like some of the big public schools in MN, WI, ND, and elsewhere where I’d looked at. Thirdly, there was a tremendous amount of opportunities to do things in the area. I could hike, bike, shop, fish, walk to downtown from campus, or drive for a few minutes and be in the woods. This was pretty unusual for almost all of the other schools I’d looked at that had been in cities with large suburban areas surrounding them.” In regards to why Stefan chose to major in Fisheries and Wildlife Management: “I chose Fisheries and Wildlife Management as my major after taking AP Environmental Science in high school. I had a great teacher who was actively participating in environmental science but also wildlife in his professional and personal life with his peregrine falcon breeding program.”
Outside of school and working in the Archives, Stefan enjoys hanging out with friends; going out to eat; enjoying good weather in the outdoors in the form of hiking, biking, (ice) fishing, skiing, hammocking, and camping; and going to the PEIF. He’ll carry with him a lot of memories when he leaves Northern: “I know I’ll always remember the great professors at NMU, the fishing, hanging out with friends, the parties, night hikes, and other spontaneous activities I got to do. All of this would’ve been extremely hard to do anywhere else but here.”
After graduating from NMU, Stefan plans to go to graduate school to conduct research in the natural resource field on wildlife or fish ecology, dispersal and distributions, interspecific and intraspecific interactions, or population management. As of the date of this blog post, he is still waiting to hear back from four schools on six different projects, and has heard back from four already that have selected other candidates. Stefan would like to be able to apply the knowledge he’s learned at Northern and pair it with the summer experiences he’s gained over the last three years. Career-wise, Stefan would take a job working for a state, federal, or private agency in a wildlife science, research, or management position.
In closing, here’s Stefan, in his own words, talking about what working in the Archives has meant to him: “Working at the Archives for four years has been a great experience for me. I’ve enjoyed being able to learn about the vast breadth of resources available to the public here at the Archives. It’s also been cool to have been the first male Senior Student Assistant. I’ve been able to practice interacting with members of NMU staff and the public, drive a full sized (green) van, perform historical research, practice good data entry and management, plan and organize public events, learn what an archives is, how it works, what kind of records it keeps, and how records retention works, among other things. I appreciate having worked with some amazing coworkers who have supported me with both work and non-work related things, and for the opportunity to work a job on campus that’s taught me so much about the history of NMU, Marquette, and the UP in general. Thanks to Marcus, Glenda, and all the student assistants!”
This post was written by Lucas Knapp.