Hi! I'm Brent Hile. I'm majoring in biology with an emphasis in environmental science. For anyone who cares about our natural resources and thinks about solutions to our many environmental challenges, this is a great program.
Similar to my friends who are in the bio and environmental science program, I love working and being in the outdoors. Lycoming County is in an area referred to as the "Pennsylvania Wilds" and is known for beautiful mountains, abundant water, and excellent outdoor recreation opportunities. In many ways I am very lucky. Combining my love of the outdoors with the study of environmental science is a perfect match for me.
The professors here are great. They are very receptive and helpful. I am fortunate to work with Dr. Peter Petokas of Lycoming's Clean Water Institute assisting him with various research projects. Have you ever heard of a hellbender? Sometimes referred to as a mudpuppy, it's an odd-looking salamander found only in a few waterways in the United States. Over the past year I assisted Dr. Petokas by capturing hellbenders and recording extensive information. After that I had to organize and interpret the data and report the findings. The project was so well received that I was invited to present it to the Pennsylvania Chapter of the Wildlife Society. The title of my presentation was External Physical Characteristics and Health Conditions of Eastern Hellbenders and it was awarded "best of show" in the undergraduate research division.
In addition to my studies, I play forward for the Lycoming Warrior soccer team. And, with my interest in the outdoors, I enjoy our "Pennsylvania Wild" location by hiking, kayaking, camping, biking, and snowboarding.
My advice to any prospective student would be to make the most of the time spent at college, whether it be Lycoming or somewhere else. Work hard and have fun! I am fully enjoying my last year at Lycoming but look forward to my search for employment in the environmental field.