Future park ranger at Leesville


While many teenagers can be found indoors playing video games or using Facebook, Sam Freeze, sophomore, is busy in his backyard building a beehive.

Since a young age, Freeze has kept himself busy with science projects such as building a hovercraft in his garage with some friends and building a rocket-propelled potato launcher.

As a kindergartener, Freeze assembled a weather station in his back yard. “I remember the first thing I ever wanted to be was a weather-man; I thought that would be the coolest job ever.”

Once a week, Freeze volunteers as a Junior Curator at the Museum of Natural Science in downtown Raleigh. As a Junior Curator (JC), Freeze and other volunteers handle the live animals on display at the museum and occasionally lead tours and answer visitor questions.

Freeze found out about the opportunity to become a JC at one of his visits to the museum. He saw an advertisement for it, filled out an application, completed an interview and was selected out of over a hundred applicants to become an official junior curator.

As a volunteer in a science museum, Freeze listens to and shadows professionals in all kinds of fields. When a local beekeeper visited the museum, Freeze had the opportunity to ask more questions and actually handle some of the bees. From then on, Freeze knew that he wanted to have bees of his own.

Freeze has a history of loving anything that lives outside. From a young age, he was collecting everything from bugs to small fish in a stream running through his wooded yard. “I love bugs, and being a curator gives me the opportunity to volunteer at Bugfest when it’s at the museum,” said Freeze.

“Convincing my parents to let me keep thousands of bees in the backyard was NOT easy,” Freeze admitted. “But I did my research and let them know about all of the benefits of having a personal hive.” Beehives produce all the honey you could want along with wax for making candles and lip balm.

Aside from the personal benefits, a beehive is very environmentally conscious. The honey bee population in North Carolina is declining, and Freeze reminded his parents that “everything in your everyday life came from something bees helped to pollinate.”

Clara Freeze, his twin sister, is not as excited. “Who would want thousands of bees in their backyard if they could just have the expected amount? And when he asked me if I wanted to help out, I just walked away.”

Freeze, a member of the Environmental Club, is taking the club members along with all AP Environmental students looking for extra credit on a hike around Falls Lake. “Taking everyone on the hike will be part of my junior curator volunteering,” said Freeze. “It’s a great experience as far as speaking and leadership skills go.”

Freeze’s dream job is to be a park ranger, specifically in the Grand Canyon. “When I shadowed a park ranger, he had me check fishing licenses and then spy on the fishermen to make sure they weren’t breaking the rules.”

Knowing what he wanted to do, he entered the world of Ham Radio (Amateur radio), a non-profit organization of operators who wish to communicate worldwide with other radio-users. A common way of communication between park rangers is through radio, so Freeze (and his father and sister) can efficiently communicate through ham radio.

As far as classes go, Freeze plans on taking AP Environmental Science, AP Biology, and Astronomy. “Astronomy isn’t something you HAVE to know really well, but most parks have ‘Astronomy Nights’ when they know the skies will be clear.” Freeze also wants to take Honors Anatomy and Physiology.

Freeze’s dream to be a park ranger goes beyond an interest in science, and into a love for the natural world. “I want to be a park ranger to protect and uphold our nation’s natural treasures for generations to come.”


  1. This article about Sam Freeze is wonderful! Sam was in my third grade class and his interest in science was amazing! I am so thrilled that he is continuing to pursue many avenues in this area. My husband is a beekeeper. He would come to school and tell about how important bees are to the pollination of our crops. I know that Sam will do well in all the science curriculums that he decides to pursue. Sam has a bright future ahead of him! Virginia Reed is a very fine writer. ~ Grace Martin, former third grade teacher at Leesville Elementary.

  2. Virginia,
    You did a fantastic job on this piece. I smiled my way through the whole article. You sure do know Sam and Clara! Keeping writing articles like this one. The whole family loves your work.

  3. I had the pleasure of knowing Sam Freeze in Kindergarten and he is truly an amazing young man. He is creative and ambitious. I know Sam will be the Park Ranger in the Grand Canyon he aims to be! He has the will, the desire and amazing parents who support him in all he does. Way to go Sam! ~Krista Chern, Kindergarten teacher at Leesville Elementary.

  4. Good job!!!!! I wish everyone were so thoughtful about their time on this earth! Includng me!
    I looked into getting a bee hive once but found that I needed first morning sun rise to hit it everyday and didn’t have a place that fit that description.
    I will not use any SEVEN in my yard so I won’t kill your hive.


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