Pascal Title became involved in the MVZ in the spring of 2007 his junior year. He began by working with Michelle Koo to georeference localities for the MVZ in our Map Room and also volunteered on Cal Day. He also took Natural History of the Vertebrates and Behavioral Ecology in the spring of 2007, taught by MVZ faculty curators. He then became part of the bird survey team for the Grinnell Resurvey Project in the Lassen region over the summer of 2007. In the fall of 2007, he began working as a paid curatorial assistant as an advanced georeferencer, and learned how to do GIS work. He continued this work this spring 2008, and is also looking forward to taking Herpetology with Dr. Jimmy McGuire.
“I love being part of the MVZ. To be working in a group of people who are all passionate about what they are researching is very cool. I feel like I am actually doing something important as I modify the Arctos database, and have to go searching through 80 year-old field notes to find some detail. In the summer, I learned how to identify birds and take down data and write my own field notes. To realize that what I was doing was current and relevant research material was amazing, as was the experience of camping in Lassen National Park for a month and a half. I feel like I have gained numerous skills from working in the MVZ. I have learned the basics of field work, from how to camp and take field notes, to how to listen to the silence of the forest and pick out bird calls. I have learned how to manipulate a large database (and know that any mistakes could affect someone’s research), as well as how to georeference. From this alone, I feel like I would know how to correctly take down spatial references in the field, since I know what is necessary for the database. I also feel like the MVZ has given me many valuable connections to important and interesting people, which will be of great help once I graduate.”