WNY PRISM is carrying on with our seasonal preparation remotely and this week we began training our seasonal Crew! Join us in welcoming our three Invasive Species Management Assistants, Julia Biondi, Jason Kappan, and Kyle Serena, as well as our Education and Outreach Assistant, Danielle Dolan.
Julia, Jason and Kyle will work in the field to survey for invasive species, manage infestations and help with habitat restoration projects throughout western New York. Danielle will join them on occasion, but much of her work will focus on hosting online trainings, designing new outreach materials and updating our website.
Julia Biondi, Invasive Species Management Assistant
Julia Biondi is a recent graduate from SUNY Potsdam with a Bachelor of Arts in Environmental Studies with minors in Geology and Wilderness Education, with a focus in Therapeutic Recreation. During her time at Potsdam, Julia was enrolled in a sustainable agriculture and food insecurity internship with The Wagner Institute of Sustainable and Ecological Research Center. In January, Julia began working with the American Conservation Experience AmeriCorps Program in Arizona where she completed several conservation projects with local project partners. Julia is looking forward to continuing her conservation efforts with WNY PRISM.
Danielle Dolan, Education and Outreach Assistant
Danielle Dolan is a Buffalo native who graduated from the University at Buffalo in 2019 with a degree in Environmental Studies, focusing on Environmental Resources and Management. Through various internships she discovered that her passion lies more in environmental education rather than management, so she is excited about the opportunity to work in both realms as the Education and Outreach Assistant. In her free time, she loves to wander alone through the woods, singing with the birds while keeping an eye out for mushrooms and wildflowers!
Jason Kappan, Invasive Species Management Assistant
Jason Kappan is a graduate from SUNY University at Buffalo with a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Studies and a focus in Environmental Resource Management. During Jason’s last summer in college, he completed an internship with the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation. This internship included fieldwork with endangered and sensitive avian species such as the peregrine falcon, pied-billed grebe and common tern. Jason has also done work with the New York State Parks’ Friends of Recreation, Conservation and Environmental Stewardship (FORCES) Program on bird surveys and worked with WNY PRISM last year as a Boat Steward and Invasive Species Management Assistant. Jason is thrilled to be coming back to work with WNY PRISM this year to learn new strategies and skills to help manage terrestrial and aquatic invasive species.
Kyle Serena, Invasive Species Management Assistant
Kyle Serena is a graduate of the University at Buffalo with a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Studies. Prior to working for WNY PRISM, Kyle worked with Buffalo Niagara Waterkeeper as an Education and Outreach Intern. This work with Waterkeeper focused on educating the public about practicing safe fish consumption, invasive species removal and waterway cleanups. Outside of work, Kyle enjoys playing shows with his band and playing Dungeons & Dragons. He is very excited to get the season started as an Invasive Species Management Assistant. Looking forward, he hopes to learn more about invasive species and our natural systems.