Bruce Peninsula Biosphere Association Summer Students Reflect on Their Experiences

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BPBA summer students Zach and Paul pose with the University of Windor’s David Ure outside the building that will house a new bioremediation experiment.

This summer, the Bruce Peninsula Biosphere Association (BPBA) hosted two summer students: Zach Rodgers and Paul Flanagan. They would like to share their experiences… 

While working with the Bruce Peninsula Biosphere this summer I learnt lots of useful and unique skills that I would never have had the opportunity to gain anywhere else. Working alongside the University of Windsor, we were able to continue an ongoing bioremediation project to remove phosphorus from fields through a customized filter located at the end of a tile drainage system. 

This summer we set up the very first biofiltration material facility right here on the Bruce Peninsula, that is commencing production this month. 

The BPBA assigned tasks to me that I would not have encountered in most typical summer jobs and that really gave me a sense of what being a project manager is like. 

In addition to bioremediation work, I was able to expand my drone piloting skills while documenting BPBA events such as farm tours, water quality improvement projects, and much more. It was a great summer and there was never a point where I wasn’t learning something interesting and brand new! 

-Zach 

I had a fantastic time working with the BPBA this summer. I was able to interact with members of the community through a variety of means, including in-person and online outreach, as well as several socially distanced events. 

I organized and conducted invasive phragmites cuts with volunteers from local communities to impede the spread of these destructive plants in our important wetlands. Included amongst these were cuts at Gauley’s Bay, Little Red Bay, and Sandy Bay. I was also given the interesting opportunity to participate in the setup work for the BPBA’s current bioremediation project. I learned a lot from the unfamiliar yet rewarding tasks that this hands-on activity demanded. 

Finally, I worked to update and expand the BPBA’s online presence. In order to provide a current and informative guide to the Biosphere’s activities, I updated the association’s social media profiles and website. 

Overall it was an awesome summer, and I’m looking forward to seeing the results of our work. 

–Paul