World Salmon Council

Monthly Archives: December 2017

Volunteer Spotlight: Lessons from Lifelong Learning with Jana Grote

Jana Grote is a retired fish and wildlife biologist. She worked for 32 years with the US Fish & Wildlife Service. Jana has been a longtime Salmon Watch supporter, trainer, and volunteer educator.

How did your interest in biology first develop, and how did that lead to your chosen career path?

My interest in biology can be traced back to a couple of really special teachers and mentors. My 6th grade teacher did lots of science demonstrations which I always enjoyed.

But when I got to college, I started out as a drama and psychology major. But I had a friend who was going into nursing, and so we visited the biology department and met with a professor. And that professor contacted me afterwards and said, “I noticed you didn’t sign up for one of my biology classes.” And I said, “No, I don’t like biology.”

But he continued to encourage me to take one of his classes. So I took his class, and the rest is history. He really encouraged hands-on, experiential learning. We took field trips around the country. We went to Oregon, the Florida Keys, and Colorado. We did projects and experiments. And it got me hooked, and that’s how I became a fish and wildlife biologist.

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