Sophie Morris: Natural Resources Management

From a young age, Sophie Morris knew her passion would eventually become her career.

Morris, a sophomore natural resources management major at Texas Tech University, wasn’t sure what degree she wanted to pursue until it came time to leave for college. By a stroke of luck, she found the Department of Natural Resources Management. Looking deeper into the major, she found there was an option to choose a specification and chose wildlife biology.

While studying wildlife biology, Morris has completed many undergraduate research projects, including one in her hometown with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service on a Cooper’s Hawk project.

“We would capture the hawks and put bands on them,” Morris said. “I got a lot of hands-on experience at the beginning of my college career.”

During the spring 2021 semester, Morris was busy gathering data on another research project focused on lesser prairie chickens. 

To complement her studies, Morris has also gotten involved with the Wildlife Society. She got introduced to the organization through an entry-level NRM class.

“One of the [Wildlife Society] outreach coordinators came in and talked about the society to everyone,” Morris said. “I was hesitant to join, because I was a freshman and didn’t know anyone. A friend had encouraged me to attend a meeting.”

Morris has never missed a meeting and is now president of the Wildlife Society.

The student organization has given Morris the opportunity to travel around the South Plains to participate in animal captures.

“For those who love to travel, the white-tailed deer and mule deer captures are usually in South Texas,” Morris said, “and there are some that are just an hour or two away.”

Morris said the Wildlife Society offers many hands-on opportunities for their members and encourages students interested in natural resources management and related topics to join the society.

“We want to give [students] hands-on experiences as well as professional experiences.”

In the society, we want to give them hands-on experiences as well as professional experiences.