Noah, pictured below, participated in the Oregon State University North Queensland and Fiji program in 2007, and graduated magna cum laude from Oregon State University in 2008 with a degree in Fisheries & Wildlife Science, minoring in Art . Since then he has gone on to work as the Associate Editor of the American Birding Association’s Birding magazine, authored the new, positively reviewed book Among Penguins: A Bird Man in Antarctica (Oregon State University Press, 2011), and is a frequent contributor to other bird-related publications. His photographs and articles have appeared in National Wildlife, Birder’s World, Bird Watcher’s Digest, Living Bird, Birds and Blooms, and Popular Birding, as well as several books and other print media. You can check out his website www.noahstrycker.com for further details on his accomplishments.
On September 18, 2011, he completed hiking (and birding) the 2,665-mile Pacific Crest Trail from Mexico to Canada during one of the most brutal snowpack seasons on record, finishing the trail in 123 days and averaging more than 21 miles per day. His epic hike was featured in newspapers and television (watch the KVAL-TV news clip here).
Noah most recently spent field seasons conducting bird research in Costa Rica, Antarctica, the Australian Outback, and the Farallon Islands. He has also studied birds in Ecuador, Panama, Hawaii, Maine, Michigan, and Oregon, helped Taiwan design an ecotourism program and searched for Ivory-billed Woodpeckers in Florida, in between birding trips. His “life list” is approaching 2,000 birds observed on six continents – one-fifth of all the world’s species.
His upcoming projects include working on a U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service-funded migratory bird banding project on Metinic Island off the coast of Maine (September-October 2011) and to monitor Wedge-billed Woodcreepers and mixed bird species at the Tiputini Biodiversity Station in Amazonian Ecuador (January-March 2012).
On talking about how his study abroad experience has impacted upon himself Noah writes:
The AUIP study abroad program to Australia and Fiji, as well as a study abroad program I completed the previous year in Ecuador, impacted me in every way. Academically, I learned far more, and in a far more meaningful way, than in a classroom. I was in the places I was studying about, seeing the people – and, important for me, birdlife and habitats – for myself. As a study abroad student engaged in purposeful travel, rather than a tourist, I was able to stay in places long enough to become a part of them, to understand their environments, cultures, and rhythms. Personally, study abroad opened up a whole world of possibilities for me! I learned to be comfortable traveling to faraway places and among strangers. I came to feel deeply that our planet is a very small place, with each place and each person connected to all the others. I could readily see that human societies are struggling everywhere with the problem of sustaining themselves while conserving the natural environment. Professionally, study abroad galvanized my career plan to live large in the pursuit of birds while experiencing some of the world’s most interesting places. My study abroad experiences were among the best times of my life.
Birds and birding are my passion. I plan to continue my career as a bird-related field researcher, author, and photographer. I see a role for myself in understanding and conveying to the general public the knowledge and excitement being generated in worldwide avian research, field ornithology, bird preservation and conservation efforts, and habitat/resource management. This is an unusual and challenging scientific career path. Study abroad provided me with well-designed opportunities to go out there and to see and learn about different places. Study abroad programs helped me envision a lifetime of going out there, seeing, and learning.
Noah has certainly accomplished a lot since his time studying abroad and we at AUIP are proud to be able to call him one of our alumni!
What have you been up to since you’ve studied abroad with AUIP? Fill out this application form and send it back to email@example.com and you could be our next alumni of the month and be in to win an awesome prize!