After studying business as an undergraduate
major, Michael Cooper went on to work in sales for the airline industry. Michael
became quite good at his job, but he soon realized his real passion was natural
resource management. So Michael enrolled in Ball State’s NREM program, where he
has been able to combine his sales skills with his love of nature to promote
ideas such as outdoor pursuits, family time in parks, and active lifestyles.
Today, Michael continues to work with private
corporations as well as the state government. His master’s project deals with
the Indiana Outdoor Expo, hosted by the Indiana Department of Natural Resources
State Parks and Reservoirs in partnership with the Ford Company. Michael’s
work is just one example of how students in the NREM department work on
community projects in partnership with environmental organizations.
Although Michael has taken his career in a new
direction, he’s been able to use his commercial sales experience to sell public
recreation ideas to the community. In fact, his skill set and experience gave
him the confidence to propose an internship to his local community park, which
resulted in the creation of a position for Michael within his local state park
and recreation center. And more recently, Michael won a conference poster
presentation at the 20th International Symposium on Society and
Resource Management (ISSRM).