University of Alberta, Tree Improvement Lab, Edmonton, AB
I was lucky enough to get a placement in my hometown, which greatly helped me navigate the transition from the academia to research. I primarily assisted with the set-up and organization of a large-scale greenhouse trial and learned a lot about the practical nature of research. To say I have a newfound respect for researchers is an understatement! I also had a chance to do field work, mainly measuring the height and diameter of a long-term genetic poplar trial near Athabasca. This term provided me with valuable experiences that I will take forwards in my career through co-op and beyond. I’ve learnt a lot about tree and forest genetics, which is an area of special interest of mine. Working in a research lab was invaluable and allowed me to explore a segment of the forest industry that I hadn’t considered before, and I believe that this type of involvement is why co-op is so important.