Biology majors conduct research in Ceta Canyon:

Dan Porter helps biology students capture different bugs.

By Lyndsee Cantly

Amarillo College faculty and students recently went on a trip to Ceta Canyon to conduct field research for their majors. They got to have hands-on research experience with a drone amongst other things and they learned a great deal not only about their own majors, but about other majors as well.

“The Ceta Canyon trip was a weekend research project [that] correlates to the NSF grant and the students who got accepted into the program,” Gerek Burford, greenhouse director, said.

Students who attended the trip had recently received a scholarship from the National Science Foundation for STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) majors.

Burford explained that the grant was an academic scholarship that was awarded to various students based on their merit and needs.

“We had to apply at the beginning of the year and say why we chose our major and what we wanted to do with our majors,” Bri Ehrlich, a physics major, said.

Ehrlich went on to explain that getting the National Science Foundation scholarship was a lengthy process, but it was worth it in her opinion because of how much she learned.

While Ehrlich is not a biology student, she said she learned a lot about the subject overall. More importantly, she noted that she was also happy to learn about other students who attended the trip.

“I met a lot of the other students and got to learn why they chose what they did for their majors as well,” Ehrlich said.

Burford seemed to agree that students were able to learn about other students as well.

“I think students got a lot of great field experience, hands-on research and just really a comradery with a lot of the other students and faculty,” Burford said.

Overall, both students and faculty seemed to enjoy the trip and found it worth it as a whole.

“It was a very good opportunity and we got to learn a lot, especially outside of your major,” Ehrlich said.

“I know I has a lot of fun. It was pretty hot outside, but definitely worth doing. Everyone I knew enjoyed it, there was lots of hands-on fun, and we got to fly a drone,” said Burford.

When asked if the trip was worth repeating both sources replied with a definite yes.

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