MESPOM student stories

The MESPOM students and alumni come from over 80 countries of five continents. A typical MESPOM student has graduated with top grades from a good university and has some experience of voluntary or professional environmental work. She or he understands global environmental challenges and has a clear commitment to contribute to their resolution.

The MESPOM Program has attracted students from prestigeous international universities such as BostonBrownLeidenLundMcGillMcMasterMoscow State, Peking and Stanford, as well as Universities of Andes (Columbia), AucklandCanberraCape TownCosta RicaBritish ColumbiaCalifornia (Santa Barbara), CopenhagenNew DelhiOxfordPuebla (Mexico), San Marcos (Peru), SheffieldToronto and Washington (Seattle), Weseda (Japan) among others.

This page offers an introduction to several student stories either to showcase a current experience or project, or describe the student's previous experiences and how it brought them to MESPOM. 

Meet Shwetha Nair, a student from batch 12 (2016-18). Shwetha, from India, comes from a background working in wildlife biology and is learning to expand her knowledge to include policy and management.

Meet Maruf Khalid, a student from batch 12 (2016-18). Maruf is from Afghanistan (the first MESPOM student coming from his country) and hopes to influence the development of environmental thinking and management in his country. 

Meet Sandeep Pai and Savannah Carr-Wilson, two students from batch 11 (2015-17). Sandeep is from India and Savannah is from Canada, and they have collaborated to publish a comparative book on the situation with the use of fossil fuels in their two countries. 

Meet Dany Avalos, a student from batch 11 (2015-17). Dany took the Manchester track for his third semester and chose to remain for his fourth semester of thesis research. Dany, from Ecuador, has a background in sustainable tourism and ecology and in MESPOM has developed his academic skills in scientific research. 

Meet Gina D'Alesandro, a student from batch 11 (2015-2017) and conducted a thesis research project in Namibia. Gina, from the U.S.A, worked on sustainable development water management plans for a local river basin. She is currently a Ph.D. candidate in the Department for Environmental Sciences and Policy at CEU. 

Meet students from the current batch 12, who completed a course assignment in fall 2017 which involved groupwork, working with real-life scenarios, and creating a game for the student group to play. 

Check back for more student stories in the future!

MESPOM Student Stories

Please describe your professional and educational background, and what brought you to MESPOM?
Saatvika Rai

I am Saatvika Rai, from India, from MESPOM class 2005-07. Currently I am a PhD candidate at the Political Science Department, University of Kansas (USA). I am also a graduate teaching assistant and teach international relations to undergraduate students. My areas of specialization are Public Policy and Comparative Politics, with a minor in Research Methods. My research interests are climate change adaptation and I am keen to explore climate refugees or migration, especially in Africa.

My name is Nga Nguyen and I am a second year student of MESPOM (2010-2012)

I really don’t know how to answer "where are you from" type of question since my fragmented academic career took me on five continents in eight years and by now I should have a case of identity crisis (just kidding). I graduated with a bachelor in applied Mathematics and I just started a graduate certificate in Geographic Information System before joining MESPOM. The reason I chose MESPOM was the interdisciplinary nature of the program, one that can bridge my different interests in sciences, management and policy (as the name literally suggests). I also chose MESPOM because of the distinguished professors and universities in the consortium. However, the moment I joined MESPOM, I forgot about all of these calculations and the journey I had so far was beyond magical. Not only that I was in an elite group of accomplished students, I was also part of a family whose strong bond will last for many years to come.

We (Anastasiya Idrisova and Alvin Chandra, Batch 4 2008-2010) are pleased to share our recent publication, “Convention on Biological Diversity: a review of national challenges and opportunities for implementation” in the Biodiversity Conservation Journal.

Njisuh Feka from Batch 3 (2007-2009) is currently volunteering as project development officer for the United Kingdom base charity African Conservation for Development Foundation (ACDEF). In this position, he is principally responsible for identifying and proposing suitable project ideas in the nexus of biodiversity conservation and development in West-Central Africa and participating in the development of fund-raising proposals.