Internship Chronicles, Chapter 5: Bridger Cline

One spring day, a Student Prince decided to go on a summer adventure. “It won’t be long before I have a career,” the Prince said, “so I’d better start preparing now.” So with some ’Berg education under their hat, and some connections in their back pocket, the Student Prince began forging their way through an internship.

We continue our web series, Internship Chronicles.

Bridger Cline is an Environmental Science major and Berg football player from Killbuck, Ohio. This summer, he is working with the Ohio State University as a research assistant in their Entomology Lab. Entomology is a branch of zoology that focuses on insects. Bridger isn’t sure what job he wants after graduation, but knows that he wants a career that can keep him enjoying the outdoors.

How did you find your internship, or how did the internship find you?

My internship was relatively easy to find. While scrolling through a job search website, I saw a link for this application, and knew it was the one I wanted to pursue: it was a familiar place close to home, and I also had the opportunity to have The Ohio State University on my resume.

What did you expect from your internship initially?

Going into this job, I honestly had no idea what to expect. Entomology is one side of science I have never had an opportunity to explore before. This being said, I was excited to learn something completely new. 

What really happens in your day-to-day work?

My day-to-day consists of a lot of fieldwork as well as plugging data into an excel sheet. In a typical week, we will have two or three data collection days, where we go to the different experimental fields and work all day either counting the number of grubs we find or measuring corn and soybean plants for overall height, and the amount of insect damage that they have. In the remaining days, we typically stay in the lab and enter data into excel so we can compare numbers and run statistics. I’m also learning how to use our microscope that has a built-in camera, which allows us to get very up close and detailed pictures of the interesting insects we find while in the field. We then use these pictures to create a model of the insect, so we can then create a 3D printed model.

What connections have you made?

Most of the connections I have made thought-out the summer have been with OSU. We have traveled to multiple extension offices around the state and have met with many other researchers at these offices. We have also done a collaborated experiment with a few individuals from Michigan State University.

What is the most valuable thing you’ll bring back to the classroom after this experience?

The biggest thing I will bring back to Heidelberg with me this fall is my improved excel and google sheets skills. I use these almost every day at work and have learned many new tricks and shortcuts within the system. Going into this job, this was a skill that I thought I was lacking. Another valuable skill I have learned about is the building process of experiments.

If your internship was a book or a chapter in a book, what should it be titled?

The best title I could come up with for my summer is "Counting bugs & Data Plugs"

For more information about The Ohio State University's Entomology lab, where Bridger is spending his summer, check out their department website.

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