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Where are they Now?

Here's an idea of what some of fabulous past Naturalist Interns have gone on to do. You can also check our blog to meet new interns and see what the previous year's interns are doing.


Ed Wynimko

Ed was an intern at SOS in 2006-2007 and then returned as a Naturalists from 2010-2017. Now he is living in the Bay area exploring new careers and opportunities. 


Shani Gitter

2002-2003. After Shani left the RLC, she started a masters in biology focusing on marine mammals doing her research in collaboration with an Italian research group, Tethys Research Institute. For two summers Shani lived and worked aboard their research vessel collecting data on the marine mammals of the Italian Rivera and teaching volunteers. Then Shani worked for an environmental consulting company, GeoMarine, as a marine acoustics specialist monitoring anthropogenic noise. She moved to San Diego continuing work as a marine mammal consultant while simulatenously working for the education department at the San Diego Zoo Safari Park. She currently has two daughters and loves being a full-time mom, still doing consulting work when time allows.

"It has been quite some time since my internship at RLC, but it was a fantastic and life changing experience... I found that I really have a passion for the natural sciences and for inspiring a love of the outdoors in others."

Hilary Hobbs

2003-2004.  Hilary stayed at SOS to manage the internship program from 2004-2008. She now works for the National Park Service, managing the Partnerships program at Golden Gate National Recreation Area. Golden Gate is a dynamic, urban national park welcoming approximately 17 million visitors each year.


"I still live on a dirt road, on top of a big hill (only now it's a different hill, in San Francisco), so I continue to carry my Big Hill Pride and think often of my incredible time at SOS!"

Rachel Utzinger

2006-2007. Rachel is currently working for Trader Joe's Fort Collins. She was inspired by teaching with the raptors at Sierra Outdoor School during her internship. She has yet to land a full-time job working with animals, but has continued volunteering with conservation and animal education programs over the years. She has volunteered with the Schlitz Audubon Nature Center in Milwaukee and the Racine Zoo.


"I have many fond memories of Sierra Outdoor School and hope to make it back for a visit before too long. Gotta meet the new birds after all."

Lori (Schaeffer) Pingle

2002-2003. Lori owns her own company that builds and inspects zipline courses throughout the United States. Check out her company Get a Grip Adventures.

"I hope it shows how I started it all . But seriously, I did. I had an amazing experience there and speak of it fondly!! Miss everyone so much!"


Jackie Fuller

2005-2006. Now a 4th Grade Teacher in Portland, Oregon!

Kendall Reiley

2010-2011. Currently a second grade teacher in Basalt, Colorado!

Lauren Schwartzman

2011-2012. Now Lauren is a member of the Peace Corps volunteering in Panama in the Community Environmental Conservation sector. She is returning to U.S. in April 2015.


Katherine Sheehan

2007-2008. Katherine got her masters in education and has been teaching high school biology and physical science for 4 years in New Hampshire.

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Dani Mazzota

2007-2008. Dani is working for the Idaho Conservation League as the Central Idaho Conservation Associate based in Ketchum, ID. ICL is a state based advocacy and public policy organization the works to protect Idaho's water, lands, wildlife and clean air.

Carly Weinberg

2008-2009. After SOS Carly taught science and started an organic gardening program at a private school in Texas for three years. Carly is currently in Maine running Dulse & Rugosa, a seaweed and farm based natural beauty care line.

"I loved my time at SOS and all the wonderful people."


     Former intern Anna Gustafson (left) and Carly (right)

Nancy Harrington

2013-14. Immediately following her internship at SOS, Nancy drove back to the East Coast to finish hiking the second half of the Appalachian Trail. In walking from Waynesboro, VA (the southern end of the Shenandoah National Park) to Mt. Katahdin in Baxter State Park, ME, Nancy raised $7,000 for the Alzheimer's Association. Upon completing the trail, she moved back home to be her family before moving off to graduate school in the summer for education! While at home, Nancy is working at a local outdoor education school, who shares many of the same principles of SOS (including BEETLES!).


"My time at SOS is like no other experience I have ever had. I utilize what I learned at SOS everyday. Whether it be teachable moments, or spontaneous naturalizing sessions, SOS somehow pops up in my life daily, and I would not trade that for anything."

Linzy Fromme

2007-2008.  Lindsay is currently a Policy Project Manager at Forterra, which is the largest conservation and community building organization in Washington State. She works on projects to increase investments in ecosystem services, help cities and counties implement policies to promote land conservation and sustainable development, and contribute to other initiatives that are increasing community engagement in policy and planning. Overall, Lindsay is helping to make Washington a better place to be in the face of climate change and population growth - ensuring there are protected farms, forests and recreational areas, and that our cities are vibrant and livable places.


Jaime George

2007-2008. Jaime went to Cal Poly SLO for her masters on Behavioral Ecology and Conservation where she worked on kangaroo rats and monarch butterflies. She is about to graduate from UC Davis veterinary school and do a veterinary internship at Tufts vet school wildlife clinic next school year.


"Miss you all at SOS. Loving the pictures of the birds!"

Laura (Caputo) Newman

2004-2005.  Laura now lives in beautiful Vermont, working for UVM's Integrated Biological Sciences program, and raising two wonderful kids!

"I will never forget my SOS (then RLC) experience!"

Heidi Jones

2002-2003. Heidi teaches a few hours a week at her daughters Montessori school. She has a "farm school"/daycare at her house, where they have chickens and do a lot of gardening. She has two kids, 3 and 7, and a great husband.

"I just absolutely treasure the two years I spent at SOS, formerly RLC."

Caroline Dhillon

2003. "After interning I stayed in California for a couple years, then relocated to the Oregon Coast (Oregon's Bay Area) about 10 years ago. I now work for the state of Oregon as a department of human service child welfare case worker. My husband and I have one son, he is 7. We enjoy the Oregon coast very much. I recently found my binder from the then RLC, full of raps about trees and songs about nature. I had a ton of fun and learned a lot during my days the Sierra Outdoor School."

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