Penny McCowen is a NAGT summer intern for the U.S. Geological Survey at the Wetland and Aquatic Research Center in Gainesville, Florida. She received her B.S. degree in Biology with an emphasis on ecology and evolution from Baker University in 2019. Penny worked as an intern in 2018 at the Baker University Wetlands where she learned various aspects of habitat conservation and restoration. In addition, she worked as the teaching assistant for the ecology and evolution lab at Baker University during the 2018 fall semester.

During her undergraduate studies, Penny conducted a year-long research project on aquatic tardigrades and published two peer-reviewed research articles. She became fascinated with invertebrate organisms and the fragile ecosystems in which they live. She plans to go to graduate school in order to pursue a career in invertebrate research. Penny’s lifelong love for nature and exploration makes her all the more excited to sail on the R/V Falkor as her next great adventure.