Hi! My name is Anna Cockey and I’m a senior studying Fisheries and Wildlife Management at Northern Michigan University located in Marquette, Michigan. I was drawn here by the beautiful environment, the average snowfall of 150”, and the Women’s Hockey program at NMU. Originally I’m from a large suburb of Chicago- although I believe I fit in more as a born-again Yooper residing along the shore of Lake Superior.
For as long as I can remember I’ve had a fascination with wildlife and natural spaces, and the healing capabilities that a walk in the woods provides. I have explored invasive species management volunteering with the USFWS Sea Lamprey Control Unit here in Marquette. Through my university I have also been involved in an ongoing research project monitoring an isolated population of Thornicroft’s giraffe in the Luangwa Valley of Zambia.
In the winter semester of my junior year I walked into class and was greeted with a brief presentation from the Wild Rockies Field Institute. I listened to WRFI alumni describe their experiences learning in the field, and as soon as my class ended I rushed home to apply. With no previous backpacking experience I nervously embarked on a two month field semester backpacking and kayaking around Montana. This lack of experience was no issue as I was surrounded by a small group of students and instructors that taught me everything I needed to know.
I am incredibly grateful for my time with WRFI and the connections I made with people and places along the way. I would love to answer any questions about my experience and highly encourage everyone to spend time learning from the natural world!