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The Gap Year Blog

An FCO's Fond Farewell

11 Nov 2019 10:55 AM

Hello dear readers, friends and supporters. I hope you have all been having a great year of 2019!

This is my final blog for my 4-month internship on the Whale & Dolphin Conservation project with FRONTIER as the Field Communications Officer.

I decided to take a chance with applying for the internship right after returning from a 2-month volunteering trip to Florida with Sea-Shepherd Conservation Society, to pursue this ‘Conservation-Activism-Media Production’ path. Since early childhood, I have been profoundly inspired by the series of documentaries by Sir David Attenborough; and decided to make a similar career from my media skills.

After being told that I had got the interview at FRONTIER HQ at the end of 2018, I decided that this would provide an irrefusable opportunity to greatly grow my career prospects. And oh my - did it deliver far more than I expected!

It has been a life-changing 4-months at the project in Tenerife. So much has happened in such a short space of time. Each week was action-packed! Although I gave everything I financially had to go to Tenerife for the 3 month internship (which then turned into 4 months with some parental help), it proved to be an incredible adventure, which provided invaluable life and career experience.


So now, for a sense of closure and insight, I would like to summarise my thoughts & feelings about the journey with you.

The FRONTIER Whale & Dolphin Conservation project provided me with an excellent stirrup for my career in Conservation Media & Activism (my main chosen field of mastery), as I obtained abundant in-field experience of Marine conservation science, creative media production, project-delivery with training and daily activities, public-speaking and honing my team-leadership skills- to name but a few… These skills are crucial for many aspects of life, especially in this field of work. My Spanish speaking ability also got a great boost!

Personally, it has been a great test of character. I have profoundly changed & grown during my time on the project, and offer my deepest thanks to my staff-team who helped support that ‘character-cultivation’ with wise teachings, moral support, task-collaboration, constructive criticism and genuine friendship. I hope I repaid the same favours right back!


If the opportunity arose, I would definitely love to go back to Tenerife- to the project or to do some other conservational adventure with FRONTIER, Sea Shepherd, or another Wildlife Conservation team.

There are still some places to visit, and things to do, which I hadn’t had the chance to do. However, I managed to tick off most of my goals on my list. Going out on the waves to meet the beautiful cetaceans on responsible tour boats, going on road-trips into the volcanic mountains, learning Spanish, visiting the cultural towns & cities, having a surfing lesson, going kayaking & snorkelling with turtles, and so much more…


It was a life-changing internship and life-experience, which even further inspired me to pursue my path in this line of work. Saving the world with direct-action, media-production, and conservation research. I can’t wait for the next opportunity to take flight and save the world some more!

Too much has happened in these few months to give all the examples for each of these points - however, I would like to ask you to see for yourself of what I mean. The evidence is right up on social media- please give a follow and drop some likes on Facebook & Instagram pages ‘FRONTIER TENERIFE’- I would greatly appreciate your support.

Check out the Facebook page here!

Take a peek at our Instagram here...

And read some of our own volunteers blogs here!

For now, I shall bid you all a very fond farewell. <3 Thank you for this amazing experience, everyone!


By Rowan Cooper-Gritten - Field Communications Officer for Frontier Tenerife

(25.02.2019 - 20.06.2019)

Frontier runs terrestrial & marine conservationcommunityteaching and adventure projects in over 50 countries - join us and explore the world!