My mentor was Dr. Nancy Irlbeck, and we are differentiating copper requirements for different breeds of long wool sheep. Being in Ignite has allowed me to connect with other students who are passionate about research pertaining to their field of study and has even helped me to get to know my mentor on a more personal basis. It was great to get to know peers from Ignite and also connect with them when we had classes together. The most beneficial part about my mentorship in Ignite was to be able to learn so many educational and fascinating things about sheep from Dr. Irlbeck. I have never worked with sheep before, so it was amazing to gain so much knowledge and experience throughout this year. One of many things I have learned from Dr. Irlbeck is how to quickly learn on my feet and be ready for any scenario. From being a part of Ignite I have also learned how to apply things from the classroom into real life practical situations.
My favorite part of the research so far has been the hands on experience that I have gained leading up to the research. For example, I have participated in overnight lambing shifts, to watch over the pregnant sheep and goats and assist them when needed. What I am most excited for is continuing this research over the summer with Dr. Irlbeck, where we will really get into more of the copper requirements for the sheep and learn how different breeds of sheep might have different copper feed requirements.