Winter quarter marks my sixth quarter as a graduate student. I’ve completed all of my required courses, piloted a community science program aimed at increasing environmental literacy amongst historically excluded scholars, and done a ton of outreach work. I supported my larger UW community as a Community Assistant in Family Housing as well as my SAFS community by coordinating the Graduate Student Invited Speaker lecture and lunch. I attended professional development panels and weekly topic lectures from field experts, I basically did everything but prioritize my own skill building. What on earth am I waiting for?

As the holder of a few minoritized intersections, I have had a difficult time prioritizing myself and my learning because it feels selfish when there’s so much work to do around the science. I have to actively reframe how I look at what is in front of me - it isn’t selfish. What is selfish is limiting your accomplishments and ability to give back by half-assing an opportunity as excellent as this. January 2023 is my opportunity to clearly identify my degree goals both long term, interim, and short term.

My long term goals are going to evolve around community science, mentorship, environmental literacy, and educating. We’ll check in on these throughtout the year. My interim goals are the focus of this post. For my next four quarters of study I want to accomplish the following:

  • Quarterly skills goals assessment and adjustment
  • Publish my first paper
  • Design and execute a complementary experiment to the WDFW mussel work
  • Apply to at least 4 grant or extension opportunities
  • Execute the reworked Yellow Island program in such a way that we have functional, usable data
  • Submit abstracts with intention to present my work at a minimum of 2 conferences (including SICB 2024) where I am showcasing my science, not just my diversity

Here is to an exciting 2023, the sky is the limit!