Sydney “Syd” Sans was born in Chicago and grew up in Williamsville. She will be starting her journey towards acquiring her MBA degree at the State University of New York at Buffalo in the fall of 2017. She attended Canisius College for her undergraduate studies, receiving a dual degree in animal behavior, ecology, conservation, and psychology, with a minor in anthrozoology in 2013.
Throughout her undergraduate studies, Syd was a Division I athlete. Her synchronized swimming team ranked third nationally, and she was hundredths of a point away from attending U.S. Olympic trials for her duet in 2011. As a soloist, she ranked 12th nationally in 2012. She became a co-captain and team manager during her senior year in 2013.
Syd was also a proud member of the Canisius College Marine Mammal Research Team and became president of the Canisius Zoological Society in 2013. She designed, conducted, and completed a research project on “Novel Visual Stimuli as Enrichment for Cetaceans,” which she presented at the International Marine Mammal Trainers Association and won second place.
In the years following graduation, Syd moved on to become a marine mammal trainer full time. She has firsthand experience working with killer whales, beluga whales, dolphins, walrus, seals, and sea lions. She has lived in California, Canada, and Dubai following her dreams working with and learning from incredible animals and people.
Since returning home, Syd has been working with dogs and one day looks to own her own canine training facility. As an up-and coming-entrepreneur, she hopes to spread successful, positive, and scientifically-based training techniques and make a difference in both the human and canine population across Western New York.