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Meet Development Challenge Past Interns: 2013

Emily Bobrick, 2015
Ecology and Evolutionary Biology
This summer I worked as an intern at Mpala Research Center in Kenya helping to collect data used to monitor the Center’s wildlife population. Every six months, Mpala performs a rigorous survey of the wildlife population using distance sampling; I collected data for their June and July 2013 samplings. read more >>

Jonathan Choi, 2015
Ecology and Evolutionary Biology
Terrestrial world’s soils provide the second largest carbon sink in the world after the oceans. Understanding how these soils give off and take in carbon dioxide as a result of different environmental pressures from grazing and fire is crucial to understanding the role of African savannas in the global carbon budget. read more >>

Manali Gokhale, 2016
Chemical and Biological Engineering
During my summer at Mpala Research Centre, I worked to measure the population trends of important wildlife species of the Mpala area. The data collected on the populations of several mammal and bird species, many of which are threatened or endangered, was then compared with previous years as part of an ongoing project. read more >>

Ray Grossman, 2015
I spent most of my summer working with unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) and studying their possible applications for ecology. First, I assisted with a project that used a UAV to take aerial photos of a cranberry bog, and stitched the photos together using software. read more >>

Eliza Harkins, 2014
Civil and Environmental Engineering
The goal of my project was to examine the current water systems of 25 rural communities and, from there, create models and predictions of future water availability for those communities, factoring in climate change and increased agricultural activity. read more >>

Kelsey Kane-Ritsch, 2016
During the summer of 2013 I worked in Kenya as a teaching assistant at 10 schools with the Northern Kenyan Conservation Clubs¬—after-school programs that provide students with an understanding of the natural world and the impact that humans have on their environment. The communities in which I taught depend on the land for survival and have experienced severe environmental degradation due to a lack of education in resource management. read more >>

Imani Oliver, 2014
During the summer of 2013 I interned with Northern Kenyan Conservation Clubs, based in rural Kenya. The goal of our program was to make young Kenyan students the “new stewards of the land,” using experiential learning as the platform to encourage conservation. Each week, another intern and I taught environmental conservation lessons consisting of hands-on model making and field exploration. read more >>

Gabrielle Ragazzo, 2015
Ecology and Evolutionary Biology
The overall goal of the Mapping Africa Project is to obtain more accurate data concerning agricultural distribution for Sub-Saharan Africa by using an Internet mapping initiative on Amazon Mechanical Turk website. In this initiative, online workers are shown a series of aerial images and paid to map the fields. read more >>

Delphine Slotten, 2015
Woodrow Wilson School
My internship work was part of a greater study to determine how two different livestock grazing regimes – traditional and “holistic” – affect the health of livestock; the quantity, quality, and diversity of vegetation; and the presence of wildlife in the West Gate Community Conservancy (WGCC) of Samburu County, Kenya. read more >>

Katherine Smith, 2015
Ecology and Evolutionary Biology
My project brought together ecology and chemistry, as I worked for both an ecology professor and an engineering professor with an interest in ecohydrology. I spent my time this summer focusing on water; specifically, a river’s interactions with other parts of the ecosystem, including both flora and fauna. read more >>