Forests and Lakes – For People – Forever ®

“Acadian” Interns at Downeast Lakes

July 22, 2011

Please welcome Karena Mahung and Cara McGuire to Grand Lake Stream.  In their first week here with DLLT, they have already helped with an education program, blazed a hiking trail, surveyed brook trout streams with MDIFW for splash dams left from the river-driving era , and monitored the Farm Cove Community Forest for late-successional characteristics with Orion forester Kyle Burdick.  Cara is a University of New Hampshire student, originally from Massachusetts, and Karena is from Belize and now studying at the University of the West Indies in Trinidad.

They are participating in the 2011 Acadian Internship Program in Regional Conservation and Stewardship.  This is a new program program that combines formal coursework from the University of Maine with a four-week internship.  Downeast Lakes Land Trust is one of several host organizations across Downeast Maine and southwest New Brunswick.  The program is sponsored by the Quebec-Labrador Foundation, Schoodic Education and Research Center, the Frenchman Bay Conservancy, the University of Maine, and Unity College, and in partnership with Acadia National Park.

Look for Cara and Karena around town and at DLLT’s booth at the Grand Lake Stream Folk Art Festival next weekend!

Updated July 22, 2011 3 PM: Here’s a blog post from Karena Mahung:

Acadian Internship- Downeast Lakes Land Trust

by: Karena Mahung

With the start of a new adventure in the Acadian Internship in Regional Stewardship and Conservation Program, there is much to look forward to with the start of our actual internships with organizations in Downeast Maine. The primary purpose of this specific aspect of the Acadian Internship is to provide the group of students with hands on internship experiences with organizations actively involved in large scale conservation in Downeast Maine.

After the first day of my working internship, I am very thrilled with the prospect of working for four weeks with the Downeast Lakes Land Trust (DLLT). Through presentations made during our first week at the SERC Institute and orientation by DLLT’s Executive Director, Mark Berry, I have already gathered that DLLT is a great model of an organization working towards large landscape conservation and one that has already had true success in accomplishing this goal.

The main learning objective of my working internship at the Downeast Lakes Land Trust is to obtain a greater understanding of and experience in the broad range of activities involved in successfully maintaining a community based conservation group engaged in large-scale land conservation. This will therefore include learning how to:

  • more effectively interact with the organization’s key stakeholder- the community
  • complete on-the-ground practical tasks of resource maintenance (e.g. trail and water access campsite maintenance)
  • learn more about the ways in which this group integrates conservation and economic growth (e.g. forest management and recreation)
  • carry out and efficiently manage administrative aspects of running a community based conservation group

Activities that I will be involved at DLLT that will enable me to meet these learning objectives will include:

  • Direct interaction with community members and stakeholders of DLLT during the Grand Lake Stream Folk Art Festival, DLLT Annual Picnic & Canoe Race, and the Explorations and Adventures Program;
  • Inventorying splash dams and assisting with splash dam removal; maintenance of hiking trails and water access campsites;
  • Working directly with DLLT’s Community Forest Program Manager and Orion field forester in forest management activities;
  • Assisting the organization’s Executive Director and Office Manager.

There is so much to gain from the opportunity to work as an intern at the Downeast Lakes Land Trust. I am truly looking forward to the next four weeks!