“My name is Rebecca Jin, and I’m a fourth but not final year student doing a Bachelor of Science in Natural Resources Conservation, majoring in Science and Management, with a recent transfer from the Global Perspectives major. Reading beside a lake in the early summer with my 11-year-old dog Tony by my side is a favourite scene of mine, as is snow, or anything snow-related. Though I’m a born and bred Vancouverite, I would much prefer without rain.”
What drew you to UBC Forestry and the Natural Resources Conservation program?
“How I ended up in my current program was a rather short story: I saw a video of a polar bear struggling on melting ice; this was my first encounter with climate change. I was moved to action and went on to watch a documentary about the effects of climate change on the earth’s natural environment, that’s when it really hit me. Although it’s a simple encounter, it’s a deep one too. Because of this experience, I’ve decided to focus my career on environmental studies. I conducted some research online and found that the Natural Resources Conservation program was ideal for me, so here I am.”
If you could recommend any Forestry course to everyone, what would it be and why?
“WOOD 461. This course tackled issues around globalization and sustainability. I loved how this course was delivered, and that the content really provoked some thinking and not just from a conservation perspective.
‘Examination of globalization and its impact on sustainability, including social, economic, and environmental aspects.’
Being in this field, it’s really important to think from multiple perspectives instead of just one. The potential and difficulties presented by global interconnection; the impact of decision-making on people and the environment; the interconnectedness of human-made systems and societies; how local experiences mediate the global, all of which are important.”
What are you most excited about this upcoming school year?
“I’m hoping to become a VP internal for the Forestry Undergraduate Society in the upcoming term. I missed out on a lot of university life because I couldn’t participate in many faculty activities while taking online classes. I’m hoping that after years of volunteer work and other services, I’ll be able to add my own ideas. Being a part of a student society allows you to give back to the campus community by organizing enjoyable activities, providing networking opportunities, and allowing students to socialize with their peers. This greatly enhances the value of the educational process.”
What has been your favourite part of your time so far here at UBC Forestry?
“Supportive professors and Faculty members. Our professors genuinely cared about our mental health, hearing about our stress and offering utmost support, especially during the pandemic when everyone was stressed and there were many colleagues all over the world in different time zones. It touched me, and for that I am thankful. The ability to form relationships with your professors is a vital aspect of the college experience, and all Forestry professors have great minds and share the same enthusiasm for their research as any other Faculty member. I know this is a recurring theme, but it bears repeating: connection is beautiful.”
If you could say one thing to prospective Forestry students, what would it be?
“Try new things and don’t be afraid of them; be enthusiastic and keep an open mind. I was quite receptive to new experiences during my first two years of university. I made an effort to attend office hours, join clubs, and go to public events, but I failed in self-doubt. The only person that denied me was myself. The sooner I accepted that I need not run away from problems but rather confront them head-on, the better. Being an extrovert, I have a strong urge to interact with others, so when I come across an opportunity nowadays, such as a social event I’d like to attend or a conversation with a professor when ideas are floating through my head, I focus solely on how I can make it happen instead of letting it pass by me. Being connected with the Faculty and the university will soon make you feel at home, just as interacting with the Self Made Man statue.”