13 December 2023


Written by: Ashley Castillo

Hello, I'm Ashley Castillo, a recent graduate from Umass Amherst with a degree in the Natural Resources field. As I embark on my second year with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, I can't help but reflect on the incredible experiences that have shaped my journey so far. 

One recent highlight that stands out is the opportunity to take the lead on an educational program that can have deeply rewarding personal experiences. Being able to do this type of work brings wonders to nature and urban neighborhoods, breaking the stereotype that a career in the environmental field is limited to rural landscapes. Receiving warm comments and compliments from the community was truly heartening and it affirmed that the work we are doing matters not just to myself but to the people I was reaching. 

Educating others in urban neighborhoods has been a fulfilling aspect of my work. There's something magical about witnessing the curiosity and excitement in the eyes of individuals who might not have had the chance to explore the outdoors in this way before. Diversity in the field has always been a priority to me, being able to represent someone who is thriving and contributing to the environmental field. As I look ahead to my continued journey with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service I am eager for more opportunities to bridge the gap between urban communities and the natural world. Each day is a chance not only to protect wildlife but also to plant seeds of environmental consciousness in every classroom I walk into. 

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