New policy intern joins TWS government affairs team

The Wildlife Society’s Government Affairs programs welcomes its fall 2022 Joe Burns Memorial Wildlife Policy Intern, Madison Chudzik, to the team at TWS headquarters.

Chudzik is a Chicago native who recently graduated from Colorado State University with a bachelor’s degree in fish, wildlife and conservation biology. Throughout her time as an undergraduate student, she worked at Colorado State University’s Listening Lab, supporting their goal of preserving National Park soundscapes through tracking noise pollution in various parks and stepping in as lab manager during her senior year. For her honors thesis, she studied the effects of different meteorological variables on migration through the use of recording nocturnal flight calls. She focused on what species were migrating and how smoke from the 2020 wildfire season in Colorado affected them.

Chudzik hikes in Colorado, where she received her undergraduate from Colorado State University.
Credit: Madison Chudzik

Chudzik is an avid birder whose professional interests include understanding the impacts of climate change and light pollution on avian migration, wildlife conservation through federal policy, and the science research-policy interface. Her goal after the internship is to attend graduate school and study the effects of anthropogenic disturbances on migration in large cities such as Chicago. She is interested in how this area of research could inform conservation legislation at the local and state level. In her spare time, she loves being outdoors, reading and cooking.

During her internship, Chudzik will help track and influence U.S federal policies that impact wildlife and wildlife professionals, enhance TWS policy, and engage in coalition meetings, legislative hearings and agency briefings. She is excited to learn more about government relations and the influence policy can have on conservation management.

The Joe Burns Memorial Wildlife Policy Internship helps advance TWS policy priorities and provides professional experience to students and recent graduates looking to expand their network and expertise. The program is named in honor of one of TWS’ first policy interns, Joe Burns. Burns devoted his career to federal service and spent over 20 years working on behalf of conservation programming within the U.S Forest Service.

Header Image: As part of her work in the Colorado State University Listening Lab, Chudzik worked on recording the fall elk rut in Rocky Mountain National Park. Credit: Madison Chudzik