Skye, 22, is currently completing her Bachelor of Science with Honours (Ecology) at the University of Otago. Her thesis is investigating the relationship between past-land use activities and stream health in a remote high-country area in Central Otago. Born in the United States to a veterinarian and a wildlife biologist, Skye lived two years in a tropical rainforest in the Ivory Coast in West Africa, before moving to New Zealand with her family at 11 years old. Skye grew up in an environment where wildlife and conservation were integral parts of her life and thus, her love for animals started from a very young age. Skye was lucky enough to gain valuable work experience at the San Diego Zoo which fuelled her passion for educating the community on the importance of conservation and protection of the environment.
In her free time Skye loves to get outdoors to swim, bike, camp and tramp around the beautiful areas in New Zealand. Studying in Otago gave Skye opportunities to get involved in the local community, doing voluntary beach clean ups and helping with yellow-eyed penguin monitoring in the Otago region. Skye also volunteered at Willowbank Wildlife Reserve in Christchurch which is a reserve dedicated to the conservation of native species. Skye received a summer research scholarship during her studies and worked on a large restoration project in Central Otago with Associate Professor, Christoph Matthaei.
Skye is beyond honoured to be a Blake Ambassador in 2019. She plans to use this opportunity to contribute to conservation in New Zealand and to inspire others to develop an understanding and appreciation for New Zealand’s unique environment.