Hey…what are those kids doing: from the horse’s mouth

Recently, TaliaSpeaks wrote a blog about EPI’s programs. So we thought we would answer her question.

In a few words? Changing the world.

More specifically?

Here’s a story about Danacia GreyWater (right, in above photo), a teen who participated in EPI’s Yellowstone Wildlife Ecology Program last summer, which tells of the personal transformations that happen in the thousands of youth who participate in EPI’s courses:

Danacia is Sioux Indian from the Spirit Lake Nation in North Dakota. She lives with her mom and family in Wolf Point, Montana. An avid player in all kinds of sports, Danacia also loves the outdoors, including hiking and camping, and decided to take EPI’s Yellowstone Wildlife Ecology course to learn more about the natural world.

Danacia’s enthusiasm for science could be felt throughout the trip, says Montana Instructor, Katie Nelson. While the experience may have pushed her boundaries and comfort zone, she came alive during data collection, and was always the first to volunteer for the various scientific studies with our research partners. She demonstrated a passion and capability to achieve her dream of becoming a marine biologist. Although the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem is far from any ocean, the practical scientific experience she gained on this trip brought her closer to attaining this goal. Danacia also gained insight away from the typical daily distractions.

“What I learned about myself is I don’t need technology as much as I thought. The outside can be just as much fun as computers and phones! I don’t litter now and when I see people doing it I try to educate them on its consequences,” says Danacia.

Danacia says that the most important thing she learned was how human interaction affects wildlife and habitat.

“I will carry the EPI experience throughout my whole life. Being in nature for a week helped me find myself and I would recommend it to anybody.”

Danacia is one of our exceptional students featured in our new 2011 Student Yearbook…coming soon!