Explore: Environment

Eden Project

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Monroe S

00:00:03 My name is Monroe S and I’m a Pollinator. I mean a Pollinator, you’ve probably heard the term and it refers to like bees and birds and the wind pollinating plants. I don’t do that with plants particularly, I do it with people. I take ideas from one person to another to another, and we share them around, I do people pollinating. And how it works is, I see somebody, or they see me, and they run up to me and they say Hey, could you tell me about this? Or I see them looking at something curiously going, Hmm? And I say, well you know what that’s used for – and we get a little dialogue – hopefully a dialogue going, rather than me just being a talking head all the day.

00:00:43 I grew up in the bit of Cornwall we call far far far West Cornwall, i.e. after you go past the Isles of Scilly, crossing the Cornish pond – New Jersey, in the United States. Because that’s where I started. Probably more Cornish folk there than there are here. In so many, I mean Cornwall – New Jersey – they’re sister counties or something. I suppose I was just your typical kid playing out in the woods, running around, went to – went to – went to Junior High, High School, went to University – a few Universities, quite a few Universities actually – ended up graduating with a good old basic degree in Liberal Studies, i.e. Humanities, which prepares you to be absolutely anything or nothing. The choice is yours. And never really had a career path. So I have to say – a hundred percent honest – this is totally unplanned.

00:01:28 Totally winging it, totally seeing – how can I keep it exciting and fresh for me, to keep it going, and seeing – what’s going to happen next I’ve no idea. I mean tomorrow this other job offer might come along, that would be – then I’d say Wow Eden was great, but this has the potential to be better. Whether it is or not, who knows?

00:01:50 Well my school interests were pretty varied as well. I got to one school, I was doing a lot of behind the scenes theatre work, like building sets and running the lights and stuff like that, which was quite cool. And then I moved on to the next level of school and I actually went to in front of the stage, I was actually performing. And I thought, this is kind of fun, you know, wearing funny clothes and stuff like that. But I mean I never realistically looked at that as a career. Saying that though, I worked a lot of work through University being a theatre technician at University part of my – that was a job I had there. Along with being a short order cook, and a librarian aide, and things like that.

00:02:23 I liked – I liked being a bus driver, that was fun, that was – you get to meet all sorts of folks doing that, and they all wanna be on the bus, so they’re coming to where I want to be. I suppose a really good one. Was being a circus ringmaster. I feel like I’m still doing that here, I was ringmaster for a small circus here in the UK. And when I moved down here, in 2001, someone reminded me Oh yeah the Eden Project’s just opened up. And I said Oh yeah, yeah, yeah. And I went and saw it, and I said – interesting place. And then because it was so popular that first year, way more popular than people thought it was going to be, they had to do a massive hiring.

00:03:04 And – I’m not a botanist, I’m not a horticulturist, but I liked the world around me, I have some curiosity, which helps, helps to be curious, and that’s what led me here.

00:03:21 There’s nothing that prepares you – everything prepares you to be a Pollinator. The more experienced I’d have to say – I can’t even envision designing undergrad course, let’s do a GCSE in Pollen – just – I can’t even think of such a thing being there, it’s such a wide – you can have any skill set. But – you’ve gotta have an enthusiasm for being with people. You’ve gotta have an enthusiasm for sharing whatever it is you have, whatever it is you do, you’ve gotta have that enthusiasm or else it could – why bother? If you don’t have that enthusiasm about what you’re doing, there’s no point.

00:04:00 ENDS

Not having a plan is Monroe’s career plan. Currently a Pollinator at the Eden Project, his natural curiosity and love of communication have helped him make a living out of taking each day as it comes, seeing what it has to offer and taking a new path if it looks more interesting than the one he is on. As a pollinator he takes ideas from one person to another, promoting understanding and stimulating innovation.

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