Armand Cann was born in Cincinnati, Ohio where he spent the majority of his adolescent life. He began cultivating a serious passion for the outdoors and natural sciences during his undergraduate career at Xavier University. In 2014, upon completion of his Bachelor of Science degree in Environmental Science, Armand began a stint of ecological field work away from the Midwest for two years, primarily in the southwestern U.S. After accumulating experiences outside of academia with various institutions, as well as working with various taxa, he completed a M.S. in Biology degree from Loyola University Chicago’s Graduate Biology Program in spring 2020. During his time at Loyola, he has primarily worked with research projects involving the understanding of herpetofauna ecological responses to environmental change. Additionally, Armand has had the privilege of teaching biology lab at the university whilst he finished his M.S. degree.

1 Are you an early bird or night owl?

Early Bird

2 Are you pro- or anti-pun?

Pro-pun

3 Do you have any pets?

All my friend’s and family’s pets are my pets. I don’t currently have the space for one myself 😦

4 Do you have any science-themed home decor?

No

5 Do you prefer cooking or baking?

Cooking

6 Do you prefer sweet or savory?

Savory

7 Do you speak any other languages?

Beginner level Spanish and used to know some American Sign Language

8 If you could switch professions, what would you do?

Wildlife Photographer!

9 If you could switch science fields, what field would you want to work in?

I think I’d choose Volcanology.

10 If you got a plane ticket right now, where would it go?

If covid-19 wasn’t a thing I would 100% fly to New Zealand

11 If you had one superpower, what would it be?

To be able to talk to animals

12 Is there anything you strongly recommend we watch and/or read and/or listen to?

A book that had a strong impact on my academic life has been Song of the Dodo by David Quammen.

13 It’s your day off. What do you want to do?

Go on a scenic hike, set up my hammock, read a book, take a nap, and tie things up by cooking a nice meal with friends.

14 What are three things you can’t live without?

Access to nature, friends, good food (i.e. mangoes).

15 What beverage gives you life?

Water. I’m boring.

16 What book did you read in school that positively shaped you?

Black Boy by Richard Wright and American Environmental History by Carolyn Merchant

17 What did you want to be when you grew up?

Probably something that is a mix between Ms. Frizzle and Steve Irwin

18 What drives you and keeps you going?

What drives me to do what I do is the existence of global socio-economic inequality and environmental destruction. What keeps me going are the amazing current and potentially future interpersonal relationships I can form with the beautiful people on this planet.

19 What got you excited in science?

I always enjoyed how scientific subjects made you think. I enjoyed those mental exercises as a kid. And I really enjoyed sharing my curiosity for some scientific subject as well as exploring in someone else’s.

20 What excites you about science now?

An endless supply of questions to answer in combination with a nearly endless need for creativity. I think science has a lot of potential for our species, and that’s what I’m striving for, but I don’t think we will truly see this full potential until every since human on this planet has access to and is given a quality education.

21 What is a guilty pleasure of yours?

Baked goods I make for myself at home.

22 What is a secret talent of yours?

Fairly good whistler. I’ve confused a handful of birders that I’m some unknown species in the distance a time or two.

23 What is your favorite game?

Chess

24 What is the last book you read?

The Silmarillion by J.R.R. Tolkien.
Currently reading Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind by Yuval Noah Harari

25 What is one of the best pieces of advice you’ve received?

Always admit your biases when having a discussion.

26 What is something you’ve always wanted to try but you’ve been too scared to do?

Vlog my thoughts that I have on the world.

27 What is the best advice for your 18 year old self?

Be kind to yourself.

28 What is the best way to de-stress?

Taking a nap in my hammock.

29 What is the last thing you watched?

The Dragon Prince

30 What is the weirdest thing you’ve had in your bag?

I have a bad habit of picking up wood nodules and slowly shaping them with my fingernails.

31 What is your favorite animal?

Favorite? No, don’t think I could ever pick just one, but the coolest animal is the Tuatara of New Zealand

32 What is your favorite book?

Fiction: The Lord of the Rings
Non-Fiction: The Song of the Dodo

33 What is your favorite comfort food?

Lightly steamed broccoli

34 What is your favorite day of the year?

May Day (1st of May)

35 What is your favorite plant?

Giant Sequoias (Sequoiadendron giganteum)

36 What is your favorite science fact?

That all the plants and trees on my block are just our very distant relatives/homies.

37 What is your favorite season?

Spring

38 What is your favorite smell?

The smell of Ponderosa pine forests

39 What is your favorite sound?

Isolated sounds of thunder.

40 What is your favorite thing about yourself?

My dark humor

41 What is your favorite word (in any language)?

“Probably”

42 What is your proudest moment?

Successfully defending my MS thesis

43 What kind of tree would you be?

A bristlecone pine tree

44 What’s the best thing about where you live?

Access to a beach along Lake Michigan a minute walk away.

45 Tell us something we probably don’t know.

That I’m a desert enthusiast.

46 Who would you like to see 46 Questions interview next?

Keenan Jerome IG: @keenan_the_nomad