As a native of Arizona’s biodiverse Sonoran desert, my appreciation for the environment was inevitable. After moving to Germany for secondary school, I studied Zoology at University College Cork in Ireland, including an exchange at National University of Singapore. For the past two years, I have been working across Latin America in community-based conservation. Experiencing the conflicts plaguing tropical forests provoked my desire to solve a critical problem: while demand for agricultural land threatens biodiversity, production is essential to livelihoods. With Dr. Edgar Turner, I will focus on conservation and income stability in smallholder oil palm plantations, evaluating management methods’ effects on biodiversity, ecosystem functioning, and profit. The research aims to improve understanding of oil palm ecology, smallholder economic relations, and other core ecological and sociological principles. With educated management, I believe biodiversity conservation has potential to ameliorate poverty and foster improvement for a range of pressing concerns. I am truly honoured to be part of The Gates Cambridge Trust, which provides an unparalleled foundation and community for positive global change.
University College Cork 2017 Bachelors of Science in Zoology