Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey

Laura Henson

Laura Henson, Environmental Policy Student Ambassador

Laura Henson

May 28, 2012

Laura Henson '12

Undergrad: Washington and Lee University

Major: English Literature and Environmental Studies

Hometown: Atlanta, GA

What is your favorite place in Monterey?

Under, in, or on the sea.

What internships or jobs have you had while attending MIIS?

I serve as the Monterey Area Research Institutes Network for Education (MARINE, a program of Stanford's Center for Ocean Solutions) liaison for MIIS, and I am collaborating this year on a project in the Spanish Mediterranean using passive marine bioacoustics to analyze fin whale migration corridors.  I also volunteer at the Monterey Bay Aquarium as a guide.

What are your career aspirations?

I am focusing my studies on biodiversity conservation, and upon graduation I would like to work closely alongside scientists in an international setting and effectively mediate between scientists and policymakers.  Ideally, I would like to do this for an NGO, though I am open to the private sector and government work as well.

Do you have a personal mantra or quote you life by?

"Not all those who wander are lost." --J.R.R. Tolkien

"In Wildness is the preservation of the world." --H.D. Thoreau

Fun fact about you:

I am a certified SCUBA instructor, and I teach courses through 7 Seas, a dive shop on Cannery Row.

If you were a food, you would be:

A pineapple. It is tropical, mostly sweet with a bit of a bite, and tough and vibrant on the outside.

What has been the highlight of your MIIS Experience thus far?

Going to Spain to participate in the deployment of the first hydrophone for the project in the Mediterranean mentioned above.  I learned loads about the process of using passive marine biacoustics, and I really enjoyed meeting and getting to know my four Spanish colleagues.  I cannot wait to return in June and September for the subsequent deployments.

And one more thing:

I am a sucker for fantasy or other worlds stories - The Hunger Games, Harry Potter, Lord of the Rings, Ender's Game, His Dark Materials, The Inheritance.