U.S. Marine Finds Future in Natural Resources
After leaving the U.S. Marines Corps in 2015, Josh Moore needed somewhere he could apply the skills he learned during his service and be close to his hometown. He found those things on the Palouse, and at the University of Idaho.
“I had an injury, so there was an 18-month period where I was waiting to be found unfit for service,” he said. “I used that time to do transitional classes and start thinking about where I want to live. I knew I wanted to come back to Idaho and that drove me to U of I.”
He also wanted his children to grow up close to their grandparents, who still live in Moore’s hometown of New Meadows.
“It’s a struggle to balance school and life,” he said. “I have to dedicate a lot of time to my kids that I could use to do homework, but my kids give me a focus and a drive for doing the best I can.”
Moore worked in aviation supply and logistics work and left the military as a sergeant in May 2015.
“The military helped me because I learned a lot of life skills that your typical college student doesn’t learn before entering the workforce, like leadership skill and effective communication for leading and working with people,” he said. “I was exposed to this program that centers around this theory of constraints. The idea is, anything you’re working on will have multiple constraints. You have to identify them and deal with them, then move on to the next.”
“All the classes have been really fantastic,” he said. “The degree program gives me a lot of flexibility. It’s allowed me to develop broad knowledge of a lot of different conservation management issues.”
In 2015, Moore was accepted in the U.S. Department of State Pathways Program, which offers federal internship and job opportunities to students.
"I knew I wanted a career that gave me the opportunity to be outside." Josh Moore
Moore was placed as a fisheries technician at the Lower Granite Dam, just southwest of Pullman on the Snake River, where he worked for the past two summers.
After graduating with his bachelor’s degree in May, he will continue at the dam as a full-time employee.
“This past summer I got to do a lot more hands-on work,” he said. “I’ve been assisting the biology technicians in making sure debris cleared from the fish passage system, making sure they get through safely. It’s been a really good entry-level opportunity.”
Moore said growing up in New Meadows influenced his career choice.
“One of my favorite things about growing up in New Meadows was being able to go hunting, hiking, skiing and fishing,” he said. “I knew I wanted a career that gave me the opportunity to be outside.”
Ultimately, Moore would like to move on to another government agency.
“I’m interested in being a biologist for the Army Corps or another agency,” he said. “I love fishing, so I like the idea of working with salmon species.”
He also considering a master’s degree at U of I.
“I applied for the program and am taking some additional classes this year, I can make master’s credits,” he said. “I’m going to take my time and make sure I can balance everything before I commit to being a student again.”
Article by Tess Fox, University Communications & Marketing
Published in April 2018.