Students’ Co-op Stories


Jillian Hubbard // Cape Town, South Africa (Biology)


“I work at the South African foundation for the Conservation of Coastal Birds (SANCCOB), in Cape Town, South Africa. My job as an intern includes hand-rearing penguin chicks that have been orphaned or abandoned, rehabilitating other sick or wounded seabirds like gulls, gannets, and pelicans, and participating in community outreach. I work closely with veterinarians, conservationists, and researchers who are dedicated to bolstering seabird populations. As an intern I am given a huge amount of responsibility – both in working with the birds and in supervising volunteers. I couldn’t have asked for a better co-op!”



Christina Potter // Kumasi, Ghana (Cell and Molecular Biology)

“My co-op is at the Kumasi Centre for Collaborative Research in Tropical Medicine (KCCR) at the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology in Kumasi, Ghana. I absolutely love my co-op where I split my time between the lab and the field for the Severe Typhoid in Africa project. My lab work consists of processing clinical samples from enrolled participants utilizing a mix of bacteriology and immunology methods. My field work is for my own project assessing typhoid-related behavior and knowledge of Ghanaians in rural areas. Hopefully, the results of my field study will draw attention to gaps in education or misconceptions related to typhoid fever in rural communities so that others can work to better educate the community and reduce the incidence of typhoid fever.”


Elena Crouch // Costa Rica (Environmental Studies/International Affairs)

Ann Marie Hulver // Three Seas in Panama

Haley Havens // The Bahamas (Marine Science/Conservation)



Out of Region:

Tony Gao // Cumberland, Ohio (Environmental Science)

“Here at the Wilds in Cumberland, Ohio, I help with many different types of research to conserve and restore native wildlife and vegetation. My field work ranges from performing surveys to identify trees, snakes, and other species, to assisting with the care and study of federally endangered species, as well as my own independent research on native bat species. Our work positively impacts the surrounding community by inspiring the local children to pursue careers as ecology researchers and conservation workers through their volunteer work with the various surveys; some of which I helped organize. The Wilds is a place where both protecting the environment, internationally as well as locally, and inspiring others to follow the path of conservation meet as one and I am proud to work here as a wildlife research apprentice.”


Greater Boston:

Keeyon Olia // West Roxbury, MA

“I am currently working as a Medical Assistant at Roslindale Pediatrics. I work closely with a team of five physicians and three pediatric nurse practitioners to provide basic primary care for patients from the West Roxbury/Roslindale area. My main responsibilities include preparing exam noms, rooming patients, taking appropriate vitals, drawing up vaccines, and performing in-house lab tests. I have had the opportunity to both observe the close bond our providers share with their patients, and also experience the tremendous developmental growth babies go through in their first several months of life. Those experiences overall have greatly reinforced my desire to pursue a career in medicine. 

Megan Reilly // Bourne, MA

“At the National Marine Life Center, we rehabilitate and release stranded marine mammals and sea turtles in order to advance science and education in marine wildlife health and conservation. We split our time between our hospital, where we give round-the-clock care to our animals, and our office, where we lead education programs for the community and maintain relationships with our donors. Co-op students also do their part to help preserve nature and protect wildlife in the Bourne community by participating in monofilament fishing-line clean-up and recycling.


John Syzonenko // North Shore, MA (Environmental Science)

Gwendolyn Schanker // Woods Hole, MA (Biology/Journalism)