Please join us in congratulating Anu Rai and Mary Opeyemi Soetan, and in welcoming them to the Interfaces of Global Change (IGC) Interdisciplinary Graduate Education Program this fall 2023!

Anu Rai

2023 Diversity Fellow


Anu recently completed her Master's degree in Wildlife Ecology and Conservation at the University of Florida's School of Natural Resources and Environment, specializing in the Human Dimension Lab in Interdisciplinary Ecology. Prior to that, she conducted research during her undergraduate years at Kathmandu Forestry College, focusing on human-wildlife conflict and performing a socioeconomic assessment of Nepal's Eastern Himalayan region.

Anu's research interests are community-based conservation focusing on underrepresented groups, sustainable conservation, human-nature/wildlife interaction, and participatory approaches.

Advised by Dr. Michael Sorice

Mary Opeyemi Soetan

2023 Diversity Fellow


Mary recieved her Bachelor's degree in Aquaculture and Fisheries Management from the Federal University of Agriculture Abeokuta and graduated among the top five in her department with a CPA of 4.31/5.0. Her interest in the field made her pursue a master's degree in order to make an impact in the Aquaculture and Fishery sector in Nigeria and the world at large. Mary got the prestigious World Bank Scholarship to study MPhil Fisheries Science at the University of Cape Coast, Ghana where she graduated with distinctions.

Mary's research interests are fisheries conservation and management, and the impact of climate change on aquatic ecosystems

Advised by Dr. Emmanuel Frimpong and Dr. Holly Kindsvater

Global Change Center Diversity Fellowships are awarded to incoming Ph.D. students from underrepresented communities, providing them with a 12-month assistantship and tuition. The aims of this fellowship are to engage students in difficult discussions of complex socio-environmental problems, learn from their diverse perspectives and life experiences, and equip them with the skills needed to drive change in communities of the U.S. and abroad. The focus of their research includes an emphasis on the social and/or environmental challenges associated with rapid global change, such as pollution, invasive species, climate change, and habitat loss.