Hi! My name is Brock Bollen and I’m from a small town in southern Michigan called Hillsdale. Since high school, I’ve attended two years at Western Michigan University where I’ve taken many a class in biology and chemistry, working towards a Biomedical Sciences degree. My favorite class was more directed towards the interactions between plants and animals, so I’m quite hung up over pursuing my current degree or a regular biology degree concerning the outdoors.
I grew up as a kid entertaining myself in the wonderful world outside where I could “blow the stink off.” A day was usually spent climbing trees, fishing, riding bike, making forts, hunting for morrels, fishing, and whatever else the imagination could conjure. My appreciation for the outdoors has followed me as I’ve grown older. In college I would walk or ride my bike to school, use canvas bags at the grocery store, and hit the local farmers markets to get the real food. Revisiting the woods by foot or mountain bike helps remind me of the importance of the natural world left unadultered.
Working in the Umatilla National Forest this Summer in northeastern Oregon is a great opportunity for me to meet people who share the same interests and ecological values that I have. Most work that I’ve had has been manual labor oriented and getting sweaty on the trails so that others can appreciate and learn the value of the wild is getting me excited. A rewarding summer it will most certainly be.