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72degrees Back

MAY. 02. 2016

Working for the Natural World

At some point in our young lives we have to stop and really think about what we are doing and where we are at. Some of us may be content, others may have that itch for something new and exciting. Lauren Hurst, 21 of Bellingham, Washington, went through some necessary soul searching to figure out where she needed to be.

"I originally set out to earn a degree in business but found myself skipping class to hike (not advised...) when I became unenthused from learning about unethical businesses and 'accounting' ...bleh. I felt disconnected to the classroom after years of loving to learn in high school, so I took a break from college and decided to apply to work in national parks. I was overwhelmed with the possibilities to move and work in beautiful places and I ended up choosing to drive out to Glacier National Park in Montana, even though I had never been.

There, I met some of the most adventurous people, young and old, which inspired me to change my plans in order to set myself up for a future that I would truly enjoy. It's tough finding a balance between "enjoying your younger years" and building a resume or career, but I decided to leave the seasonal work to only the summers, and continue studying in college with a major that tied my passions together. I ditched my major for one in Environmental Studies, which has made all the difference in my academic career. I am now connecting with outdoor professionals and learning the ins and outs of our natural world to better my own understanding of the planet and outdoor recreation."

Lauren has turned her passion and love for the natural world into what she is studying at her University, allowing her to earn an education in a field she is so passionate about. That is what it's all about. She hopes to use her photographs and knowledge to bring others closer to the outdoors and increase environmental awareness in the ever growing "adventure" culture.

"This is our time to make a difference since people are becoming more aware of the magic that the outdoors hold for ALL of us!​"

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