With no more than nine students to every leader, our trips give you the freedom to break into small teams and explore your interests. Meet a few of our Expedition Leaders below.
Montana State University, B.A.
Photographer, educator, and National Geographic Explorer Erika Skogg has traveled the world in her quest to document the human experience. Erika’s work is driven by a desire to preserve the Nordic heritage of her native Wisconsin; she visits Scandinavia regularly in search of the cultural connections to Wisconsin’s emigrant history. Through her storytelling, Erika aims to foster respect for modern-day migrations by igniting peoples’ interests in their own genealogy. For the past eight summers, Erika has led National Geographic student photography workshops, where she inspires the next generation of photographers and storytellers.
University of Geneva, M.S. (in progress); Vassar College, B.A.
At Vassar College, Kene studied biology—with concentrations in ecology and adolescent education—and then went on to study bacterial phages in a research lab at MIT. Passionate about community service, Kene has volunteered in many capacities: he helped build homes in underserved neighborhoods in the Hudson Valley, worked on an orchid farm in Costa Rica, and taught photography to middle school students. He has also served on the board of his local Habitat for Humanity chapter. Kene is an avid photographer, fluent in Spanish, and enjoys performing live music.
University of California, Berkeley, Ph.D (Candidate); University of California, Berkeley, B.A.
While pursuing his undergraduate degree in integrative biology, Dan conducted a research study on the California ground squirrel, a project that led to a publication in the prestigious Biological Journal of the Linnean Society. He has traveled to Guatemala, Mexico, and India for fieldwork, collecting museum specimens and studying regional bird species. Dan returned to academia after a two-year stint as a game warden at the California Department of Fish and Wildlife. He is currently a Ph.D. candidate at the Museum of Vertebrate Zoology at Berkeley, where he regularly leads tours for Bay Area student groups.
Alex Milan Tracy
University of the Arts London, M.A.; University of Kent, B.A.
Alex is a freelance photojournalist and videographer, born in London and based in Portland. His work has appeared on multiple media platforms, including National Geographic, The Guardian, and TIME. Passionate about environmental issues, Alex has covered stories on fossil fuel extraction in the Pacific Northwest for nonprofit organizations like the Sierra Club, 350.org, and Columbia Riverkeeper. He recently worked on a project for a Salt Lake City-based adventure travel company, documenting a wilderness first responder program and a mountaineering expedition in Ecuador. Alex has previously taught six National Geographic student photography workshops.
University of Pennsylvania, M.P.H.; Emerson College, B.S.
Janissa studied multimedia journalism at Emerson College, where she minored in health and sports communication. After graduating, Janissa joined Newsweek as a staff science writer. She currently freelances full-time and has contributed to CNN, Teen Vogue, and Everyday Health, among other publications. In 2018, Janissa was awarded a fellowship by the Association of Health Care Journalists. She has served as an overnight counselor for Play by Play Sports Broadcasting Camps in a number of U.S. cities, and enjoys running and traveling in her free time.
Harvard University, Ph.D. (in progress); CUNY Hunter College, B.A.
At Hunter College, Lauren focused on biological anthropology, researching the impacts of exercise and diet on caloric expenditure in indigenous and Western populations. She backpacked through Europe after graduation on an epic adventure that had her spotting puffin hatchlings on the cliffs of Iceland, scuba diving around the Greek isles, and eating gelato outside the Pantheon in Rome. Lauren is currently pursuing a Ph.D. in human evolutionary biology department at Harvard, and counsels children and adults in her spare time. She is proficient in Spanish and Latin and skilled in natural history illustration.