This is one in a series of articles written by students who received scholarships in 2022 awarded through the Fergus Falls Area Dollars for Scholars chapter. The purpose of these articles is to thank the community for its support of students and their higher education goals.
Leaving my home in Minnesota to attend Montana State University in Bozeman, has proven to be one of the biggest adventures of my life. I am only beginning my journey in the area of Conservation Biology and Ecology, having just completed my first semester and I am already very inspired by the work being done by my professors and students whom I have met. From the carnivores of Yellowstone National Park to bats in Australia, it is astounding to learn about all of the different fields of research and study coming out of the MSU biology department. I am very much looking forward to my own research opportunities which I hope will start in the spring as I take part in the FYRE (First Year Research Experience) program.
While I have chosen to focus the majority of my time and energy on academics, I also joined MSU’s chapter of The Wildlife Society. Taking an active part in this club has confirmed my desire even further to work in conservation. Our club had the opportunity to remove barbed wire fencing from a high migration area of deer and elk, learned to safely use bear spray and heard testimonies from teachers, students and professionals about the work they do. In addition to The Wildlife Society, I joined MSU’s Birding Club and take part in a weekly small group through CRU (Campus Crusade for Christ). Community service has always been important to me and I occasionally join MSU’s monthly “Service Saturday” helping local Bozeman non-profit businesses. Next semester I hope to also join Circle K International, a collegiate service leadership program of Kiwanis. As well, I will be taking part in Spirit of the West pep band. These clubs, organizations and volunteer opportunities have helped me to find a social connection as well as meaningful and valuable ways to serve. It has been a fun experience getting to know the Bozeman area which is breathtakingly beautiful with mountains in every direction. It is a great area to enjoy outdoor activities and wildlife and it is a perfect place to study plant and animal life. It has been very eye opening for me to get to know students from all states and backgrounds and to learn new perspectives from them.
I am so grateful for the new relationships I am developing in Bozeman, but even more so, I have discovered a deeper appreciation for my family and friends back home. Living 12 hours away from Fergus Falls hasn’t been easy, but I have had support from my parents every step of the way. They have been my biggest cheerleaders and encouraged me when I was unsure about my decision to go to school so far from home. I am forever grateful for their love and confidence in me.
I have truly had such a memorable first semester at MSU and I very much look forward to the rest of my time there. I am so thankful for the opportunity to study something that I am passionate about and enjoy and would not be able to do that without the love and support of my family as well as the generous scholarship I received from Dollars for Scholars. The investment that was made in me and my education is humbling and appreciated beyond words. The mountains are calling and I must go!
Norah Foreman is a 2022 graduate of Kennedy Secondary School and is currently attending Montana State University in Bozeman, Montana. She is the recipient of the Conrad G. Blegstad Scholarship. For information on making a donation for scholarships, contact Fergus Falls Area Dollars for Scholars, 601 W Randolph Ave, Fergus Falls, MN 56537.