We are very proud of 2017 REU Scholar Amanda Ashby (a sociology major at University of Central Florida) for being hired (before graduation!!) as a Project Development and Environment (PD&E) Planner at Inwood Consulting Engineers in Oviedo, FL!  Amanda is a soon to be graduate of University of Central Florida’s Department of Sociology where she works closely with Dr. Hawthorne (REU PI).  We asked Amanda to share how the REU prepared her for this new career experience.

Amanda working in Hopkins Village with drones, GIS, and local youth.

Here is what she had to say:

“The REU helped to prepare me for starting my career in many different ways. While in Belize I learned the importance of an interdisciplinary and collaborative approach to problem solving and that it can sometimes “take a village” (pun intended) to overcome and achieve your goals. The REU also improved my critical thinking skills, GIS skills, and taught me how to be adaptable to whatever environment I may be working in. Most importantly though, I believe that the experience gave me the confidence to take chances and to go after my goals. Before the REU I don’t think I could have imagined how much my life would change for the better just by being given the opportunity but, here I am, months before graduation and I already have a great job that I enjoy going to every morning and I have an incredible support system of fellow REU Scholars and staff to share in all of the excitement with.”

Congratulations, Amanda!!  #citizensciencegis #ucfreu #ucf #ucfsociology #belize #nsf #inwoodconsulting #oviedo #florida

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