Reflections from the 2021 ACS Lab Retreat
The world is in a very different place since the last lab retreat we held in 2019. We were grateful to be welcomed back to Big Fish Lodge in Port Renfrew this year as a team to celebrate group accomplishments, successful field seasons, and upcoming research. We did so with daily Rapid Antigen Tests and full masking, the only way by which a lab dedicated to evidence and safety should consider such a gathering.
Over the past two years the people that make up the ACS Lab have changed, but the vision remains the same. Our commitment to applied science and informed advocacy was demonstrated across the wide breadth of projects undertaken by team members. From fin whale behavioural work to occupancy modelling of mountain goats, an emphasis was on the diversity of research but also the community partners that make this work meaningful.
Of note was leadership demonstrated amongst lab members new and old in leading workshops throughout the weekend. Melanie Clapham and Lauren Eckert guided the group through media relations and science communication. Ishana Shukla then engaged members with an honest conversation on cultural sensitivity and diversity, equity, and inclusion.
The collective takeaway was that science is still better together. As we enter the new year, we are grateful for seeing familiar faces after far too long, sharing research with colleagues who feel more like friends, and commending one another on just how far we’ve come.
Persia Khan & the ACS Lab