If at First you Don’t Succeed, ‘Apply Apply Again’

Hello all, my name is Tangy (tan-jee) Wiseman and I will be moving to Denver, Colorado to begin my internship at the Intermountain Regional Office. I was raised in northern Iowa in a town called Algona; it’s rural and friendly. I lived in an old farm house that is one of the original five homesteads in Algona and is set near the forest where my brother and I often played. Here, I came to love being active and exploring nature.

I had a lot of opportunities in my childhood to test my athletic abilities and travel.  As a single parent, my dad signed me up for any sport, camp, or activity he could find, and I flourished in most all of them. He also helped facilitate my interest in the outdoors when he took my brother and me on trips out West to Yellowstone National Park, The Black Hills of South Dakota, and Sundance, WY.  Reflecting on the variety of activities and experiences I had in my childhood, it’s no wonder that I have taken a very curvy path to arrive at my current state of interests and ambitions.

I remained a multi-sport athlete throughout my high school career while also being involved in band, color guard, and choir. Amongst all my activities, basketball was my greatest passion.  I spent hours at the local YMCA shooting hoops and attended 2-3 basketball camps each summer while traveling to tournaments with a club team. My senior year I committed to play for the Tritons at Iowa Central Community College in Fort Dodge, IA. ICCC is a unique college, because it is the epitome of a melting pot of backgrounds. The majority of the student body is involved in athletics, and each sport attracts international students.  I loved connecting with so many different people and found myself making friends with some members of the track team.  Soon enough I had joined the track and cross country teams and continued playing basketball as well. My sophomore year brought many opportunities to continue running, and so I chose to pursue that at Wichita State University in Kansas.

It was at Wichita State that I began to focus more closely on what I wanted out of my education. My freshman year I thought I wanted to pursue a career in the sports medicine field, but I realized that if that door closed for me I wouldn’t even miss it.  One thing I would definitely miss if I lost it is the ability to learn about and explore this beautiful earth. For this reason, I switched my major to biology, focusing on environmental science.  The following summer I applied for an LHIP internship but did not make the cut. Instead, I got a job at a restaurant in Yellowstone National Park and took the opportunity to shadow a sustainability engineer.  I also became more experienced in hiking, camping, and kayaking.  What a life it was to wake up to elk calves on my front door step and encounter grizzly bears on my trail runs.

I applied for an LHIP position again this year, because I want to continue to connect the urban population with national parks. Witnessing the beauty of these parks and observing the benefits of these wild ecosystems builds a greater overall appreciation for the environment.  With the challenges that many cities face including climate change and rapid growth, I look forward to learning more about how the NPS can encourage individuals to make small decisions in their daily lives that demonstrate respect and understanding towards the environment we live in.

I am grateful I was given this opportunity after applying a second time and look forward to the challenges ahead that will bring opportunity for growth and perseverance! I am a distance runner after all; it’s simply in my nature to push through.

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