A successful Internship

During August and September, the Jurassic Coast Team was joined by Katharina Fettweis, a German biology student who wanted to experience first hand, how the Team operated.

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Katharina quickly fitted in with her new colleagues, and it was evident from the start that she would be a valuable – albeit temporary – member of the Team.

This is Katharina’s account of her Internship:

“Hello, my name is Katharina, I’m 22 and a biology student from Germany. I spent 6 weeks at the Jurassic Coast as an internship student in order to get some work experience in Nature Conservation which is a part of my degree. Those six weeks have been fantastic and full of new experiences to me. It was my first time in a job which is related to nature conservation. Working with the Jurassic Coast team has been great and although I have worked in teams before, it was my first time in a team where everyone has a specified task or area of work that he or she is responsible for. I realized how important a good atmosphere and communication in such a team is and how well the Jurassic Coast team works together. By talking to many members of the team I got an insight into their work which made me learn how complex it is – not only everyone’s particular job but the complete management of the coast. There are so many organizations, people and interests involved that it seems to me as if it is a balancing act to take them all into account and still develop and improve the management of the coast. Locals here at the Jurassic Coast seem to be quite happy and proud of living close to a World Heritage Site which I think is simply great. Therefore I realized how important it is to keep in good contact with the general public as well as local groups of interest and I think the Jurassic Coast team does that very well.
My major task here was to look at the offer for overseas visitors and I hope I could contribute to the team’s work by collecting ideas from many different people on how this offer could be improved. I think even though I was specifically looking at the offer for overseas visitors, UK visitors can benefit from the ideas that resulted in my surveys. To attract German visitors I did a podcast in German that will soon be available on the website.
I also spent time with rangers in Charmouth, Durlston and Portland and that has been a great experience as well as I got to see more of the beautiful landscape and wildlife around the Jurassic coast. I particularly enjoyed working a whole week on Portland, helping the ranger Lyn Cooch with outdoor tasks like cutting back the scrubs in the quarries and dry stone walling and I also spent a day at the Portland Bill Bird Observatory where I helped setting birds free!
I learned lots about the Jurassic Coast itself by talking to members of the team, rangers, tour guides and locals and by visiting different places – I think the Jurassic Coast is a wonderful place and I am genuinely sorry I have to leave now.”

I am really pleased that Katharina got so much out of her time working with us, as the effort she put into tasks and projects presented to her, was commendable.

Julia Pulman, Jurassic Coast Marketing Officer.