Meet the 2022-23 Student Team
Each school year, the Lilly Center employs Grace College students to help manage scientific studies, develop and execute K-12 programs, and help manage collaborative projects. Most of these interns major in environmental studies or environmental science. From mid-August to early May, our student team dedicates hours of excellent work each week to the Lilly Center.
Open the tabs below to learn more about each of our teams!
The education team is responsible for helping to deliver our K-12 programs. They develop curriculum, teach in classrooms, plan for Lake Adventure Days, and so much more!
Emily Anderson is starting her second year at Grace College studying environmental science.
“I remember teaching 2nd graders at Leesburg Elementary about fish anatomy,” Emily recalls. “They were so receptive and kept trying to give me their fish paintings. The kids were excited about learning which made me feel really awesome.”
On Emily’s bucket list is to visit every national park. This fall she is visiting Indiana Dunes, her 9th park!
Maintaining over 80 aquariums and keeping our 400+ fish, a turtle, frog, and mudpuppy healthy is a giant undertaking! The aquarium team also installs fish tanks in classrooms, a vital part of our education programs!
Intern Chai Spencer is a junior at Grace College and is completing a degree in environmental studies.
“One of the things I enjoy is doing school installs and talking to the kids about the fish,” Chai says. “The kids ask what fish it is and I’ll explain that it can be found in a river or lake nearby!”
Chai’s dream job is to work with animals at the SEA Life Aquarium in Australia.
The field team members are our “boots on the ground.” They sample 12 stream sites on a bi-weekly basis and, during the summer, 14 local lakes. When they aren’t in the field, the students review data and take care of equipment.
Freshman intern Ethan Smith is also studying environmental science.
“My work at the Lilly Center will help me proceed to be a conservation officer or work with the DNR,” Ethan says. “It’ll help me grow in a research capacity other than a law enforcement capacity.”
Ethan’s favorite national park is Yellowstone National Park and he hopes to serve in national parks!
L-R: Joshua, Landon, Ethan, Austin, Tat’yanna, Keiko, & Annalieze. Not pictured: Rachel, Mairwen.
The algae team takes the water samples the field team brings back from lake sampling and turns them into microscope slides. After counting and identifying the species in the slides, that data is added to the Lilly Center’s catalog and used for scientific reports like Beneath the Surface.
Annalieze Crawford is a sophomore at Grace College. Though she now studies nursing, she enjoys her work at the Lilly Center.
“I love using a microscope and looking at live slides,” Annalieze explains. “You can see the algae actually moving. It makes you step back and appreciate how life is so complex. The fact that we have microscopes to use for this scale of science is such a blessing!”
Thanks for helping us give the 2022-23 student team a warm welcome! Student interns are integral to the Lilly Center’s work and key to the future of our waterways. Students like Emily, Chai, Ethan, and Annalieze are future park rangers, zookeepers, and biologists.
Launch Environmental Studies Students
You can help launch students just like these into their chosen fields by investing in student fellowships: