Coastal Watershed Institute
Florida Gulf Coast University
10501 FGCU Blvd S.
Fort Myers, FL 33965-6565
Interning with Coastal Watershed Institute (CWI) was a true stepping stone experience in the path to my career. The knowledge I gained while interning with CWI helped to strengthen my skills in the lab, field, and in the science community. My time with CWI also helped assure myself that I wanted to continue with a career in the environmental field. After graduating, I received a job as an Environmental Specialist with the Florida Department of Environmental Protection- Charlotte Harbor Aquatic Preserves (CHAP). The skills I learned with the Coastal Watershed Institute were invaluable as they are used every day in my current job. With CHAP, I spend most of my time in the field, conducting water quality and resource monitoring and management within the Charlotte Harbor estuary complex. I love working for the Charlotte Harbor Aquatic Preserves office and am so grateful to have had the opportunity to intern with Coastal Watershed Institute.
My name is Bob Halstead, and I am the Membership Administrator and Research Assistant for Bonefish & Tarpon Trust. BTT is a non-profit research and conservation organization that seeks to protect bonefish, tarpon, and permit fisheries, as well as their habitats, through science-based conservation efforts. My experience with CWI has helped me in so many ways already with this job, like how “field day” doesn’t always mean warm sun, cool breeze, and calm waters. Being able to be a part of the ongoing research and monthly monitoring allowed me to gain greater insight into how estuaries work and the importance of maintaining long-term data, both of which are crucial to the work being done with the bonefish, tarpon, and permit. I wouldn’t be who I am today without the friends and memories I made during my 1 ½ years with CWI.
I am currently an Environmental Consultant for the Department of Environmental Protection. I serve as the Liaison for the Florida Water Resources Monitoring Council, which is council of stakeholders from many disciplines and organizations that participate in water resource monitoring and management. My internship at CWI not only gave me field experience in biology and water quality monitoring aspects-but also firsthand experience in Florida water quality issues and the ability to link field studies with the policy issues key to an environmental communications position.