On October 14th, 2022, Lyndsay Bott will be the latest student to graduate from the Master of Sustainability program at Brock University. Lyndsay joined the program in 2021 and began working under the supervision of Dr. Julia Baird as part of the Water Resilience Lab. Lyndsay’s Major Research Paper looked at the relationships between peer-reviewed literature and Ontario best practice guides to aid the understanding of control methods for invasive Phragmites.
We caught up with Lyndsay and asked her some questions about her time in the SSAS program, and her plans for her career.
Q: Describe the research project you completed during your time in the SSAS program.
Lyndsay Bott: My MRP focused on identifying best management practices for the control of invasive Phragmites to produce recommendations for private landowners in the Niagara region. I compared invasive Phragmites control methods from both peer-reviewed literature and Ontario Best Practice Guides to identify the overall risks associated for private landowners. These control methods were compared with the goal to bridge the gap between published and practical literature to finally produce an infographic to potentially be distributed to private landowners in the Niagara region.
Q: How has your time in the program shaped your future career goals?
LB: The SSAS program has immensely shaped my career goals. I believe what you do in this program subjects you to interests you may not have previously known existed. For example, during my time as a student in the SSAS program I was exposed to new interests through my personal completion of an MRP, the work I completed as a Research Assistant, and by participating in class projects or activities. I believe the interdisciplinary nature of the SSAS program allowed me to broaden my career interests and made me qualified for a vast number of roles right out of university. Overall, the SSAS program broadened my future career goals, as I am aware of new interests and potential opportunities.
Q: What are some of your favourite memories from your time in the SSAS program?
LB: One of my favorite memories of the SSAS program was the field trip we took to present our project to the Niagara Parks Commission at the Power Station in Niagara Falls. This trip came at the end of the semester after my peers spent a couple of months completing a Communication Strategy and Interpretive Plan for the Niagara Parks Commission with the goal to help them become a leader in environmental sustainability within the Niagara region. Being able to present completed work to a community partner was a great learning and professional experience but participating in the tour of the Power Station and other Niagara Parks landmarks was amazing. Overall, it is a really wonderful memory I hold of being able to spend time with my peers outside of the classroom while presenting really meaningful work that everyone put great effort into.
Q: What are your plans now that you’ve completed your master’s degree?
LB: Following the completion of my master’s, I very quickly landed a job in northern British Columbia working with an Indigenous group as an environmental referral’s coordinator. The SSAS program really set me up to be qualified for such an important role advocating for the sustainability of this Indigenous group’s territory in British Columbia. I do have the long-term goal to go back to school to complete further education, as finishing this master’s degree also opened my eyes to the rewarding nature of completing individual research.
We offer our sincere congratulations to Lyndsay, and to all Brock students graduating this week!