Each week, we showcase one of our CAHNRS Ambassadors, a student leadership organization that encourages students to pursue higher education and serves as a liaison between the college and the greater community. This week, we’re featuring Claudia Kightlinger, a junior from San Diego, Calif.
What are you studying?
I’m majoring in Wildlife Ecology & Conservation Sciences with a minor in Zoology.
Why did you choose WSU?
My major offered a lot of opportunities for hands-on experience early on.
What is special about being a CAHNRS Coug?
The facilities and opportunities we have are fantastic.
What is your favorite CAHNRS class so far and why?
NATRS 435—Wildlife Ecology because I get to learn from a professor with real world experience doing what I’m interested in, with the animals I want to specialize in. He’s also teaching us how to make an impact in conservation using fact-based science and research.
Who are influential professors that you’ve had, and how did they impact your life?
Lisa Shipley—enthusiastic and the first professor I interacted with; I worked with her for my IGNITE internship.
What extracurricular activities are you involved in besides ambassadors?
I volunteer at the WSU Bear Center, and I also tutor.
What is a fun fact about you?
Interned at the San Diego Zoo Safari Park working with cheetahs primarily, but had the most amazing summer and gained a bunch of real-world animal experience.
What advice would you give an incoming freshman/high school senior to help them adjust to college?
Don’t put too much pressure on yourself, or have too high expectations. Everyone has a different path so don’t worry about your progress compared to others.
Favorite item/flavor at Ferdinand’s?