When I first heard about the In My Backyard program, I was instantly intrigued. It seemed like the perfect balance of youth development and environmental stewardship, two of my greatest interests. When I was asked to interview for a Mentor position, I was excited but equally nervous. The program seemed like a fantastic opportunity to work with a passionate group of people who were working hard to inspire the next generation of stewards, and I wanted to be part of that.
Four years ago, everyone I knew thought I was bound for law school after I graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree—I even thought that for myself. Three years ago, I knew I was going to law school. It was my one goal, the one thing I had figured out about my life for certain. I wanted to become a lawyer who defends people who are wrongfully accused of crimes and put on death row. Two years ago, I knew I would go to law school to become an environmental lawyer. One year ago, the thought of law school made me sick to my stomach. Presently, I know I will not be going to law school any time soon. One month from now, my time with In My Backyard will be wrapping up, I will no longer work in the legal field, and I will be starting a new job with the U.S. Forest Service.
As I walk through new experiences in my life, I continue to learn more about the world, about others, and about myself. This summer, I had no idea just how much I would learn from being an In My Backyard Mentor.
When I decided to join the In My Backyard team this year, I knew I would get to work on subjects I care about, but I really wasn’t clear on what the summer would look like. I had a good feeling about the people in the program who I had spoken with, and I did my best to arrive in Seattle with an open mind. Coming from a much smaller town in Pennsylvania, living in the city alone took some adjusting in my first month here and it wasn’t always easy. Despite my new surroundings, I was instantly comforted by the warm personalities throughout the Klondike Gold Rush building – especially my fellow mentors and supervisors.
I was born in Vietnam but lived in Seattle Washington all my life.
In Western Washington born and raised, on the playground was where Collin spent most of his days. He previously lived in Bothell until he was forced to move to Seattle, since it was more connected the the public transit system.
Tyler is a rising junior at inglemoor high school. He has grown up in the Bothell/Seattle area his and cares deeply about his connection with the community.
Ever since I was 5 or 6, I’ve always loved learning and talking history. I was inspired by the Indiana Jones Movies, I became so fascinated by what happen or where it happened or who lived there for how long.
Efren being born and raised in Phoenix Arizona where it was 110 degrees houses on fire, then moving to Washington in 2006 to a snowy place where I would always get sick.
Weston was born and raised in northern Seattle, Washington. He hasn’t left northern Seattle much other than to go visit family out of state and in Eastern Washington.