Meet A Mustang: Darian Lisle

Meet A Mustang

Jul 07, 2019 • Biology, Chemistry, Meet a Mustang

When Morningside senior Darian Lisle got an offer to become a Fish and Invertebrates intern at the #1 aquarium in the United States, it was an adventure she couldn’t refuse.

Darian is spending her summer working at the Georgia Aquarium, where the majority of her responsibility is focused on three fish and invertebrate galleries: Cold Water Quest, Tropical Diver, and River Scout. Each of these galleries contain unique fish and invertebrates from specific locations in the world and are giving Darian a chance to learn about and interact with unique species.

“I’m honestly learning something new every day. Whether it’s a fun fact about a particular species, how to manage water or tank quality, or simply the fact that there are many people that don’t believe sea dragons are real animals.” 

The Morningside biology major pursued the internship with the Georgia Aquarium specifically because of the opportunity it offered her to spend time focused on both fish and invertebrates. She spent last summer working as a Marine Mammal Interpretive Naturalist at the Minnesota Zoo and felt the work at the Aquarium would help her to clarify her future career path. Through both opportunities, Darian says she has found that her Morningside experience has prepared her well.

“Right now, I’m immersed in a world of marine science nerds who are fluent in science. I can easily hold conversations with skilled biologists because of what I’ve learned at Morningside, and I can also help guests learn about the amazing sea life they get to see at the aquarium. I’m putting every course I’ve taken to use in some way.”

An added bonus of the internship at the Georgia Aquarium is that Darian is also enjoying all that the city of Atlanta has to offer. She’s living with three roommates at the Georgia Institute of Technology in downtown Atlanta and is a short walk from her internship.

“I’m excited about exploring the city, and I have a bucket list for the summer. The list is mostly composed of restaurants I need to eat at, places I need to shop, and famous sites to see. I also have a few ghost tours and concerts that I would like to attend. I’m a huge fan of the University of Georgia, so I plan on spending some time in Athens to check out campus and maybe see the football team practice.”

In addition to being a dedicated biology student with minors in chemistry and sustainability studies, Darian is a captain of the Morningside Mustangs Softball team, on the executive council of the Connie Wimer Women’s Leadership program, and involved with Tri-Beta and Chemistry Club. After graduation, she plans to attend graduate school to earn a master’s degree in marine science. 

Get a behind-the-scenes look at Darian’s internship! On July 14, Darian will take over the Morningside Instagram account and give a behind-the-scenes look at her internship with the Georgia Aquarium.


Darian’s Morningside Moments

What made you choose Morningside? 

I received an offer to play softball here and it was an offer I could not refuse! Especially having two previous knee injuries in high school I thought my softball career was over. But once I got the offer to play at Morningside, I knew it was the place for me!

When did you know Morningside was the place for you?

This moment happens for me every day at Morningside. The reassurance is within the friendly faces, the knowledge I take away from my courses, and the beauty of the campus. I actually enjoy the courses within my major and appreciate the knowledge that I earn from taking them. 


Who is a faculty or staff member on campus who has had an impact on you?

This is a toss-up between my professors Dr. Tim Sesterhenn and Dr. John Helms. Professor Sesterhenn has been my research advisor for two years and I have taken many classes with him. Professor Helms is my major advisor and I have also had classes with him. Both professors have helped me make major decisions about internships and life after Morningside. Both professors have also helped with receiving internship offers.

What’s been your best Morningside experience so far?

There are too many to talk about! Everything from meeting my best friends, excelling in academics, and playing the sport I love.