Meet George Bailey, environmental science major
“My decision to study environmental science stems from my childhood obsession with nature, plants, and being able to spend time outdoors. These are natural resources that I believe every human should have the opportunity to enjoy. Studying environmental science gives me the opportunity to leave the world better than I found it."
- Environmental Science
- Lafayette, La.
Where I'm From
I’m from Lafayette, La., where I grew up passionate about nature and spending time outdoors.
Where I Am
I’m an environmental science student working as a lab technician.
Where I'm Going
I am going to return to Nepal to complete my thesis and work to make the world better than I found it.
George Bailey’s lifelong passion has been environmental science.
UL Lafayette turned out to be the perfect place to study this passion while staying close to home.
“My decision to study environmental science stems from my childhood obsession with nature, plants, and being able to spend time outdoors,” he said. “These are natural resources that I believe every human should have the opportunity to enjoy.
"The decision to study environmental science gives me the opportunity to leave the world better than I found it.”
Learning in the Field
His environmental science classes have been a source of real-world knowledge that he can apply now and in his future career.
“One of the first classes I got exposed to in environmental science was Mr. Jim Foret’s Plant Science Laboratory,” he said. “We had the opportunity to manage our own garden plots and to grow whatever produce we wanted. Immediately after taking this class, I created my own garden plot at my house — and, to this day, keep up with it — supplementing my diet with fresh, home-grown produce.”
His classes have taken him on adventures both locally and abroad.
“Wetland Soils with Dr. Jennifer Richter was an amazing class that I took during my junior year,” he said. “Not only did she have one of the best teaching methods I’ve been exposed to, she took us on many memorable field trips.
“These field trips ranged from identifying hydric soil by using the Natural Resource Conservation Service’s field indicators,” he explained, “to traveling out to the Louisiana Universities Marine Consortium and being able to observe a natural landscape composed of primarily wetland soils.
An International Internship
“My absolute favorite part of the program was the opportunity to study abroad in Nepal for three weeks over the summer of 2019 for my internship credit,” he said. “This experience opened my eyes to how serious environmental pollution can be."
"I made many friends while I was in Nepal that I still keep up with to this day. I hope to have the opportunity to return soon and perhaps do my thesis in Nepal.”
Getting Valuable Experience
He doesn’t just look forward to applying his knowledge in the future — he applies it to his current job as a bioassay lab technician at Element Materials Technology.
“All of the lab classes that I have taken throughout my time at UL Lafayette have all gone on to help in my current job,” George said. “A few examples of this would be how to run a five-day Biochemical Oxygen Demand test, how to determine total dissolved and suspended solids, and even knowing how to calibrate the equipment used in environmental laboratories.
“The professional connections I’ve made through my department have gone on to help me set up a successful career in the field,” he said.