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Congratulations to Blaire Smith, one of two successful recipients of the 2018 John B. Holdstock Scholarship!

“My passion for fish, wildlife, and habitat conservation is what drives my academic studies,” states Blaire. “This scholarship will help me pursue my academic goal of completing a Bachelor of Science.”

Highly driven in her studies, Blaire credits her academic achievements to being a diligent student. She graduated with honours with a Recreation, Fish, and Wildlife Diploma.  “The achievement that I am most proud of is the applied research project I completed. I focused on detecting Canada lynx in the Rossland Range of BC, by snow tracking, hair snare, and trail camera. I was responsible for proposal, field work, final report, and successful grant writing. My hard work was recognized and I was awarded the Student Excellence in Technology Award from the Applied Science Technologists and Technicians of BC.”

“My long-term career goal is to pursue work as a biologist in the Kootenay region of BC. I want to manage fish and wildlife resources and make science-based decisions to conserve habitat. It is very important to me that future generations have the opportunity to step into nature and connect with wildlife, just as I have. As a biologist, I want to protect and foster this relationship with nature for generations to come.”

“I am a traditional bow-hunter and an avid fly-fisher. Participating in these recreational activities gives me perspective and understanding of different view-points when it comes to management of fish and wildlife resources. I believe this background helps me interact with stakeholders and user-groups when completing conservation projects.”

“My employment history and volunteer work support my interest in fish, wildlife, and habitat conservation. In 2015 I was responsible for conducting terrestrial and aquatic invasive species work. From 2016-2017 I worked as a fisheries technician where I coordinated field activities for a Westslope Cutthroat Trout hybridization project and supported fisheries research and conservation. Currently, I assist in Northern Leopard Frog recovery work. I also participate in ongoing volunteer work for Bird Studies Canada and Wildsight, a local not-for-profit organization. These surveys include collecting data about nocturnal owls and waterbirds that will help shape future management decisions.”

Great job, Blaire, and good luck in your future goals!