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Vanessa Shevlin: Axe-Wielding Forest Goddess & Badass

Name: Vanessa Shevlin

Year: 4th

Major: Forestry and Natural Resources

Minor: Sustainable Environments

Her Campus: What clubs or organizations are you affiliated with on campus?

Vanessa Shevlin: I’m involved with Cal Poly’s Logging Team and the Society of American Foresters student chapter.

HC: What do you do for the logging team? How often do you meet? How big is the team? How can people join?

VS: There are a ton of events like axe throwing, climbing, obstacle course, cross-cut sawing, chopping, chain saw, and we’ve even got some water events that are especially fun on hot days.  We just get to work and hangout outside and learn applicable skills that we can use in work and life.  We have meetings once a week, practice every Friday afternoon, and we have a couple competitions each year.  Right now I think the team has about 50 or 60 people and anyone can join the team by enrolling in NR 290, which is just a one unit credit/no credit class.

HC: What’s the best part of being on the logging team?

VS: The people, definitely. We’re just a bunch of weirdos so there’s always someone or something to entertain you.

HC: What do you like best about your major?

VS: We have so many outdoor labs and weekend field trips that a lot of the time it just feels like you’re hiking and camping with your friends, and we get to go to some beautiful places all around the Central Coast.

HC: What’s something interesting that people don’t know about forestry?

VS: I think people would be surprised to know that it’s actually a pretty broad and diverse field that incorporates so much more than just national parks or timber.  We take classes on botany, watersheds, fire ecology, policy, surveying, forest operations, forest health, even natural resource economics.

HC: What words of wisdom do you have for our readers?

VS: Work hard, be kind, and everything is going to be okay.

HC: What’s your least favorite holiday food?

I know it’s not technically a food, but eggnog has always grossed me out.

HC: Most favorite holiday food?

VS: My mom makes amazing fudge!  It’s a recipe I have tried to make but messed up too many times, so I just leave it up to her.

Madeline is a fourth year Theatre Arts Major at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo. She loves corgis, giant sweaters, cold brew, and theatre history. She is the Co-Manager of the only theatre club at Cal Poly, and has performed in and also stage managed many of the MainStage productions. She has aspirations to one day be responsible enough to take care of a dog, and also to attend graduate school to earn a PhD. She is excited to be contributing to Her Campus this year; a goal she's had since her freshman year of college. Her personal heroes include Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Rachel Bloom, and people who commit to monochromatic outfits.
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