Tuesday, March 01, 2016

Leadership lived: Student's passion for conservation grows at UIS


David Seidel has watched himself grow as a leader during his four years at the University of Illinois Springfield. At the same time, the biology major’s passion for a career in conservation has been growing thanks to the opportunities UIS has afforded him.

“UIS has shaped me as a leader, as a student, as a future member of society,” he said. “It really has benefited me and I’ve noticed a change in my four years here.”

The Altamont, Illinois native has severed as president of the Biology Club and vice president of Students Allied for a Greener Earth (SAGE) at UIS for the past two years. He's also member of the Capital Scholars Honors Program.

“Being the president of any student organization teaches you a lot about leadership,” he said. “It teaches you how to manage your time, how to schedule events, how to coordinate people and it just immensely helps you with your leadership skills.”

Thanks to his UIS experience, Seidel was able to land an internship with the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency in the Water Quality Standards division.

“The internship definitely gave me a good insight into how a government agency works and functions and it also fueled my passion for conservation work,” he said.

Following graduation, Seidel plans to earn a master’s degree in biological sciences and become a restoration ecologist, a person who goes into degraded ecosystems and tries to restore them to their original state.

He says it wouldn’t be possible without the knowledge and skills he’s gained at UIS.

“I’m very thankful,” he said.

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