25 May A Journey at Mount Rushmore National Memorial
Driving through the wonderful scenic route of South Dakota, I knew this summer was going to be an experience I won’t forget. Seeing the sunlight hitting the trees and mountains gave me a peaceful feeling on the road that never ends. Once arriving on my first day as an intern at Mount Rushmore National Memorial Park gave me goosebumps. Training began and I got a tour around the monument and learned about the different areas Park Rangers work in. Orientation helped me familiarize the different areas of the park visitors don’t have access to. Our training schedule was quite demanding due to the number of field trips around South Dakota and Wyoming. We visited four national parks: Jewel Cave National Park, Devil Tower National Monument, Wind Cave National Park, and Badlands National Park. I have never visited so many national parks in two days so having the opportunity to explore and appreciate the wilderness made me feel at peace. There was a memorable moment when I was listening to a guest speaker named Sina Bear Eagle. She is a member of the Lakota tribe and told us about indigenous history, contemporary life, and the Lakota’s’ emersion story. As she shared her tribe’s stories, we were given a glimpse of how her ancestors came to this world. Through their cultures, each generation teaches those stories. I was very fortunate and grateful to hear their stories and am interested in learning more about the Lakota culture. This summer, I am looking forward to learning more about Mount Rushmore National Memorial’s history, working with other national park service employees, and Lakota culture. We are aiming to find new ways to make monuments like Mount Rushmore memorial value diversity and communicate the differences between cultures.
Here is the link to read more about The Lakota’s Emersion Story. https://www.nps.gov/wica/learn/historyculture/the-lakota-emergence-story.htm