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WEN Interns & volunteers

Volunteer Highlight

Bethany Blakey (she/her)


Bethany is currently studying Geosciences at the University of Montana. While growing up in Utah, she spent lots of time collecting rocks and bugs in the local mountains and creeks. When she's not studying, Bethany enjoys reading, crocheting, hiking, camping, and running.

Bethany is focusing her internship on a full picture view of WEN's Stream Team including field prep, field work/data collection, data management and entry, to data analysis and reporting.

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Sarah Leopard (she/her)


Sarah is  in her first year of law school at the University of Montana and is interested in natural resource and public interest law. She grew up in Virginia and moved to Montana to serve with AmeriCorps in 2021. She loves exploring the outdoors and enjoys hiking, running, or reading by a creek.

Sarah is volunteering with WEN to help us with our data entry and various programs!

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Oliver Jepson (he/him)


Oliver grew up in Northern California, before coming to the University of Montana to pursue his Bachelor's degree in aquatic wildlife biology, with a minor in Climate Change Studies and a Certificate in GIS. Growing up in California Oliver spent lots of time in the Sierra Nevada growing his love for the outdoors, particularly water and the creatures within it. Since moving to Montana he has taken full advantage of the recreation opportunities in Missoula spending as much time as possible outdoors hiking and fly fishing. Oliver knows that getting the community involved is a huge component of conservation and is looking forward to learning how WEN accomplishes that to preserve the natural beauty that is Montana.

Oliver is helping WEN to create training videos of our field protocols and activities to act as a learning tool for future volunteers!


Abby Gearhart (she/her)


Abby is a current Environmental Studies graduate student at the University of Montana. While growing up in Colorado, she spent a lot of time skiing, camping, hiking, and fly fishing in the Rocky Mountains. She has earned a B.S. in Biology and a minor in Environmental Studies at Bucknell University. Abby played soccer for the University of Montana in the fall and four years at Bucknell University.


Abby is helping WEN to create an analysis of the groundwater data that was collected by the groundwater team in Greenough Park.


Kaytie Newman (she/her)


Kaytie is studying hydrology and environmental science with a concentration in water resource management at the University of Montana. She is Montana born and raised, growing up both in and around the water. Kaytie swam competitively for the majority of her childhood and loved going to lakes and the local river, fueling her passion for water conservation. Since moving to Missoula she has taken full advantage of the incredible mountains and beautiful waters of western Montana. 

She plans to use her degrees and knowledge from WEN to further develop hydroelectric power and protect Montana's waters. Her goal is not only to harness the power of Montana's waters but also to ensure the preservation of these invaluable resources for future generations.

Kaytie is helping WEN with our youth and school programs as well as our Backyard Citizen Science program.

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Marra-Lynn Rodriguez  (she/her)


Marra Lynn is a Senior at UM studying Environmental Science and Sustainability, where she is concentrating on Resource Conservation, with a Minor in Wilderness and Civilization. She is internationally certified Level 1 tracker, Certified Montana Master Naturalist, and now an Intern with WEN helping out with vegetation monitoring and other citizen science field monitoring.

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Mallory Lampe (she/her)


Born and raised in Wisconsin, Mallory has lived close to rivers, creeks, and lakes her whole life. She earned a B.S. in Special Education at the University of Wisconsin - Oshkosh and taught high school special education for 8 years, including 1 year in Helena. Her love for adventuring outdoors with her husband lead to them moving out to Montana in 2021. She is currently pursuing her M.S. in Environmental Studies at UM with a focus on Environmental Education. She desires to help kids & teens connect to their local natural environment and to make environmental education more accessible to everyone. When not working or studying, Mallory enjoys hiking, camping (tent & hammock), reading, nature photography, traveling, and binge-watching TV series. Mallory is a certified master naturalist. 

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Volunteer of the Year: 
Al Pak

As we see the field season come to a bittersweet end, we want to highlight one volunteer, of whom has been apart of the WEN family for nearly 10 years now, who ensured the success of our Sunday Citizen Science Stream Team by joining us for nearly every outing! The lovely Al Pak! Al has been the backbone to everything macroinvertebrates at WEN, and has volunteered time this season to lead Stream Teams macro collection and ID station where volunteers collect and identify 300 bugs per field session. Thank you Al for all your help this year and in the past! 


The WEN Team 

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