Skip to main content Skip to secondary navigation
Main content start

Andrew Vo

Every part of Stanford during these 8 weeks has been very memorable for me...

posted August 10, 2017

Every part of Stanford during these 8 weeks has been very memorable for me. I’m going to miss researching and finding data for my final project, hanging out with the other interns, and (as much as I hate them) even measuring the endless number of butterflies. I’m going to miss having Noel as my supervisor and listening to guest speakers talk about their field of science. And most importantly, I’m going to miss being a Stanford Earth Science intern. Everyday when I woke up for Stanford, I was always expecting to learn something new and this internship fulfilled that expectation. The amazing people that are in this program will forever hold a special place in my heart.

Big shoutouts to Jenny for organizing every aspect of this internship, Noel for being such a great supervisor and mentor, my AP Environmental Science teacher, Mr. Khong, for introducing this internship to me, my boys Ryan Kim and Victor Jann for being such cool and unique guys, and all the other people at Stanford who have guided me along this amazing journey.

As we all know, everything eventually comes to an end and unfortunately, that is no different for this program. I hope I can meet everyone who was apart of this experience again. But as of now, we walk our different paths and onwards to a bright future ahead of us.

Six weeks into the internship...

posted July 25, 2017

Six weeks into the internship and the butterflies still haven’t ended. My partner and I have entered over 2500 entries of butterflies! (End my misery please). However, fortunately for us, that’s not the only thing we’re working on. As Biodiversity interns, we are expected to present a final project about any topic relating to biodiversity and apply what we have learned to our project research. The project that my partner and I are working on involves finding a correlation between the amount of debris human populations put into the ocean and species populations within those habitats. The two locations we are focusing on are the Mediterranean and the waters near Australia. Since, it will take a significant amount of time to record data for all populations of biodiversity, we are mainly focusing on six phyla, specifically mollusca, annelida, arthropoda, anthozoa, echinodermata, and chordata.

Outside of the class, we recently took a field trip to Pinnacles National Park and camped overnight. It was fun at first, but when it became night time, my tent was surrounded by raccoons. The other interns also found a black widow and mice burrowing underground. (I don’t think I slept that night). The next morning, we hiked on one of the mountains and studied the rocks and volcanic history along the way. We learned that the ancient volcano the park preserves was originally in what is now modern day Los Angeles! However, gradual movement along the San Andreas fault line moved the rocks 195 miles northwest where it would eventually end up at Pinnacles.

Time has gone by fast and we will soon be ending this internship in a few weeks! I can’t wait to see what the future will hold.

The First 2 Weeks

posted July 04, 2017

The first two weeks at the internship have been very interesting and exciting. I met with the other interns from around the Bay Area and my supervisor, Noel. Over the past few days, we Biodiversity interns recorded a countless number of butterfly species (the butterflies never end!) from several books Noel provided for us. We mainly focused on the butterfly’s body length and wing length.

Besides recording butterflies, we also participated in other activities such as using the IUCN Red List to learn about different endangered/threatened species, using the Paleobiology Database to track the distribution of marine fossils over the course of different time scales, and learning R, the computer-programming language. This was a nice way to relax since most of us didn’t want to measure butterflies all day.

Outside of class, we participated in fun activities such as taking a tour around the campus and meeting with guest speakers. We recently went on a field trip to New Brighton State Beach where we got to see a variety of fossils buried in the rocks and a preserved blue whale skeleton at a research facility!

I am looking forward for the next few weeks to see what I am going to experience and what I will learn.