I am a first year graduate student at Ohio State’s Environment and Natural Resources program pursuing a Master’s of Science in Soil Science. My undergraduate studies were done at the University of Cincinnati, where I dual majored in Biology and Environmental Studies. During this time, I performed research on nutrient cycling in green roof plant species and had the opportunity to spend time in rural India. Both of these experiences shaped my interest in studying soil fertility in the developing world. My primary areas of interest include soil fertility management in tropical regions, agroecology, intercropping and cover crops, and aligning scientific research with subsistence farmers’ needs. My Thesis is currently undecided, but I am in the process of designing the study.
Rattan Lal, advisor
Trailblazer Cambodia Organization
Central Cambodia & IRRI, Los Baños, Philippines
In December, 2015, I spent several months in Southeast Asia gaining agricultural experience. From February through June 2016, I volunteered in central Cambodia with a community-based NGO called Trailblazer Cambodia Organization. My work primarily focused on designing beneficial agricultural programs for local farmers. This included diversifying diets through sustainable fishing techniques, growing mushrooms for extra protein and income, and designing training farms for local schools. I also worked to facilitate communication between international groups and the communities we served. During August 2016, I participated in a training course on rice research and production at the International Rice Research Institute in the Philippines. This was a wide-ranging, intensive course that delved into such topics as rice physiology, growing techniques, and genomic research. Both experiences have greatly expanded my understanding of agriculture in the areas I wish to pursue. As I begin my research I will value the opportunities I have taken to learn more about our world’s agriculture and look forward to new opportunities to do so.