Current Students

Samuel Ayanleye
I seek to focus on issues relating to Wood Physics and Drying, Wood Quality and Wood Modification. The MSc in Wood Science will allow me to explore and work with the new technologies in wood science which will open my understanding of new areas of research in the field of wood science. It will expand my horizon and allow me to see the beauty of wood. I am looking forward to work on the “Impact of Western red cedar extractives on Hygroscopic Properties and Brown Decay.” The research will further enhance understanding about how extractive contents in wood affects some of the properties of wood such as moisture content, strength properties, color and durability of wood. During my internship program in the college which I undertook at the Forestry Research Institute of Nigeria, I investigated projects on the influence of anatomical properties on the performance of wood, the use of wood for acoustic purposes, the impact of time and load on wood deformation to mention but few. Though these projects didn’t really satisfy my research dreams I recognized my desire for the process of learning and discovering through creative and systematic research.

The works of professors and other research fellows in the Department of Wood Science at the UBC Faculty of Forestry motivated my interest in graduate school. The correct application of research by graduate students is quite remarkable and motivated me to pursue my graduate studies at the University. I appreciated meeting Dr. Stavros Avramidis, a research fellow in the Department during my search on the university research impacts and I found his approach toward research in wood science and his applications very appealing. Through my uniquely balanced perspective, I turn my gaze upon graduate study at the university. The opportunity to utilize the university analytical resources such as Accelerated Checking Tester, FT-IR Spectrometer, Swellometer among others further motivates my pursuit of research at the University of British Columbia. From this correspondence, I feel the research that I would conduct at the university would not only be interesting and rewarding but would give me experience in the field and then apply it toward my ultimate goal of becoming an academic professor.

I have been living in a rural setting of Osun state for the past years where half of the population live an average life. During my degree program, I co-founded the Edenworld initiative, an initiative that is committed to Forestry Education, Climate Change Campaigns, Tree Tagging, Agroforestry services.

I also volunteered for other NGOs like Gemstone Nation Builders Network and Commonwealth Youth Peace Ambassadors Network where I participated in several online and offline sessions on Peace Building, Value-Based Leadership and Community Development. I have written and published several contents such as “Role of Agroforestry in Sustainable Agriculture”, “Role of Youths in Feeding the Hungry Planet”, “Actualizing Peace in Challenging times and Combating Hate Message, Role of the Youths”. As a solution provider who sees the need to fill the gap in the access of information by business owners, I recently started an online marketing platform Packagingstores that shares content on the latest marketing strategies to drive sales and promote small businesses through increased online presence.

Beyond my desire to attend the University of British Columbia for academic reasons, Canada also appeals to me on a personal level. After spending five years in the rural setting of Akure, Nigeria, I am ready to live in a new, urban setting. Living in Canada would be perfect for me because it would allow me to experience life in a major city and allow me to have a different cultural experience. I would be very excited to be surrounded by the enriching culture and academic environment at The University of British Columbia and I hope to have the opportunity to do so.

Choosing to study at the University of British Columbia was a decision I made without hesitation because of the hi-tech facilities available and its leading edge in Forestry and Wood science disciplines. The quest to achieve success and excellence in every of my endeavour supplies the energy to pursue and achieve my goals, since success demands diligence, dedication, discipline and determination. I enjoy teaching, learning and I find conducting research satisfying, interesting and opportunity to learn new skills and working with new technologies is particularly of interest to me because my ultimate goal is to be an extraordinary scholar and a great researcher capable of conducting world-class research for the benefit of mankind and to a larger society and able to respond to continuous global changes in technology. I am looking forward to meeting with new professors, industry experts and students from all over the world, meeting and interacting with people from different backgrounds and settings would be a new experience for me. I would be happy to live in a place filled with green space, mountains, hills, tourist centres like British Columbia as compared to what we have in my home country.

I like to watch movies, play volleyball and play games.


Teresa Silverthorn
Impacts of forestry practices on riparian areas of headwater streams

I’ve always had a curiosity for learning new things, and I hope to become a researcher/lecturer.

I grew up in Guelph, ON and studied Environment Resources and Sustainability at the University of Waterloo, in Waterloo ON.

I decided to study at UBC Forestry because I was excited by all of the awesome research going on in the Stream and Riparian Research Lab.

I am most looking forward to expanding my knowledge by conducting a research project as well as collaborating and sharing ideas with other students.

I enjoy cooking, hiking, yoga, rock climbing, and painting.


Kim Bessler
I would like to be a researcher. I was living in Lakewood, Colorado attending Colorado School of Mines while earning my Bachelor’s degree in Metallurgical and Materials Engineering.

I want to live internationally and experience something other than the United States. As well, UBC is a great school with many more opportunities than any I could find in America, particularly the research aspect. In addition, getting to know people from other countries and getting to know Canada!

I enjoy trail running, rock climbing, climbing mountains, and playing my guitar.


Yue Yu
I was previously studying for my Bachelor’s degree in Beijing Forestry University and doing internships in Forestry in remote forest areas in China.

I have had some basic background knowledge on Forestry topics but I’m now more interested in how climate changes may affect the process of forest genetic evolution.

I really enjoy travelling.


Kate Kitchens
I studied Earth and Environmental Sciences in my first degree and was first exposed to forestry through my dissertation work. Though I have more of a geologic background, I think I found my special interest when working on climate change within forest sciences. My supervisor Dr. Rob Wilson was able to foster my interests and put me in contact with the UBC Forestry Department. Once I spoke to Dr. Carroll about his research I knew I wanted to work with him and study at UBC!

I attended the University of St. Andrews in Scotland from 2014-2018 where I achieved a Bachelor of Science (Honors) in Earth and Environmental Sciences.

I came from an incredible, though very small tree-ring lab in my undergraduate degree. I was drawn to UBC Forestry because of its diverse and exciting department! I am thrilled to be able to widen my horizons and learn as much as I can in Forestry, and I think UBC Forestry affords me space and opportunity to pursue my interests.

I am especially interested in learning more about wildfire dynamics. As I stated above, I am primarily a geologist by training, and never had the opportunity to formally learn about this fascinating subject. Now that my research at UBC centers around this idea, I am looking forward to learning all I can.

I have been involved in Improvised comedy for the last 6 years and performed from 2014-2017 at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival with my previous group, Blind Mirth. I love being able to perform and make people laugh! I am also looking forward to exploring the great outdoors in British Columbia, as I also love a good walk somewhere green and quiet.


Marie Nosten
My general interests include:

  • how rural communities manage their livelihood from the land (e.g. forestry, agro-forestry) in the context of an ongoing conflict zone
  • how values of land management are passed on to the next generation, and
  • investigating the process and barriers of establishing a Tribal Forest (Salween Peace Park)

My undergraduate degree was a good introduction to the field of land and forest conservation, but it lacked focus and opportunities to develop practical skills for the workplace.

Pursuing a graduate degree will allow me to narrow down my interests, meet like-minded colleagues, and acquire more skills to use in a career dedicated to natural resource management and conservation.

I completed my B.Sc in Natural Resource Conservation at UBC in 2015, and have been mostly working as a contractor in the Lower Mainland for the past three years. Prior to starting my undergraduate degree, I was living in Thailand.

Dr. Janette Bulkan’s work aligned with my scope of research, and she is a specialist in indigenous community forestry in tropical regions. In addition, I have already established a great community outside of UBC since beginning my undergraduate degree here, so I’m very thankful that I can continue to grow with my friends and new family here in Vancouver!

In no particular order, I enjoy:

  • meeting brilliant students, faculty and staff that are passionate about what they do
  • collaborating with Karen NGOs and community members in BC, Thailand and Myanmar (and practicing my Karen language)
  • the challenge (and hopefully rewarding experience) of learning from areas I’m not too familiar with such as sociology, economics and anthropology
  • Getting crafty (specifically, doing art projects out of recycled materials)
  • Hikes and walks, preferably in the woods
  • Playing with other people’s dogs

Iain Reid
(tentative) Identify blister-rust resistant whitebark pine, assist with phenotyping efforts following blister-rust inoculation in seedlings, analyze whitebark pine assisted migration data.

I decided to pursue this degree to further my understanding of forest tree diseases as well as further conservation efforts on an endangered keystone species. I am hoping to broaden my work opportunities as an ecologist as well. Hopefully, I will learn a lot and meet some awesome like-minded people!

I completed my Bachelor’s degree with UBC Forestry in Natural Resources Conservation. I grew up in Vancouver and have lived here for most of my life. For the past four summers, I have worked for Parks Canada doing ecological monitoring.

Having completed my Bachelor’s degree with UBC Forestry, I know that the faculty and environment will be a great fit for me. There are a lot of great resources and research opportunities in the faculty.

I am looking forward to conducting a research project from start to finish as well as learning a lot of new techniques in genetics, ecology, and data collection.

I enjoy hiking and scrambling, running, looking at trees, biking, photography, playing guitar, cooking and eating, kayaking, and learning how to ski.


Hui Yuan

After four years of undergraduate study, I feel that there are lots of unknown buried treasures in the forest. I hope that I could explore these secrets and try to find a harmonious way to live with nature and improve the comprehensive utilization of forest resources without breaking the original ecosystem. In order to achieve this goal, I decided to pursue a graduate degree here. I came from China where I studied Agricultural Resources and Environment at Nanjing Agricultural University.

UBC Forestry is one of the world’s leading forestry schools, with the best scientists who are passionate and concerned about the forest. Having advanced laboratory equipment and a variety of courses also made me choose UBC Forestry.

The most interesting aspect of my graduate program is the opportunity to communicate with the researchers who come from all over the world. I believe the diversification and globalization perspective will benefit me a lot.

In my spare time, I enjoy reading and hiking. Reading provides me with a chance to talk with others and learn from them across time and space. Hiking helps me connect with nature and find inner peace within myself.


Emmanuel Adoasi-Ahyiah
I come from a country whose forest resources have depleted from 8.2 million hectares to 1.6 million hectares and are continuously threatened with deforestation, desertification and land degradation through climate change and anthropogenic activities. My desire has been directed towards the need for sustainable forests and natural resources management as a tool to safeguard against environmental vicissitudes resulting from these activities, hence my decision to pursue higher learning.

I was working in Ghana as a Teaching and Research Assistant at the Faculty of Renewable Natural Resources (FRNR), Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST). I played significant roles in forest-related research works run by my department. This created an ideal academic and research environment for me to enhance upon my knowledge, skills and expertise as well as developing adequate research skills in forest and natural resources management.

Working with the District Agricultural Development Unit (Ministry of Food and Agriculture) and the Forestry Research Institute of Ghana (FORIG) as an intern, I worked in different ecosystems and with farmers. Working with these farmers who are one of the major drivers of deforestation in Ghana motivated me to seek further knowledge, skills and expertise to fully understand the linkages between forest and natural resources and its impact on livelihoods and to contribute my quota to ecological forest and natural resources management in Ghana and other developing countries.

The resolve to curtail the depletion of forest and natural resources is contingent on experts with the requisite knowledge, skills and expertise to sustainably conserve and manage forests and natural resources. I am therefore motivated to learn, to be part of these experts to continue making useful contributions to sustainably manage Ghana’s and other developing countries’ forest and natural resources, hence my decision to study at UBC Forestry.

More so, UBC Forestry is one of the best global institutions in forest sciences research and education with state-of-art buildings and facilities. I envision UBC Forestry would provide the right academic environment to develop my intellectual and research capabilities, analytical skills and professional career in the comprehensive range of forest and natural resources management.

My research. I intend to approach my research work with open-mindedness. I want to learn new things that have applicability in solving forest management, climate change and rural livelihood problems in Ghana and other developing countries.

In my free time, I love to listen to music, read, meet new friends and learn about their culture, volunteering and cooking.


Khoi Mai
After coming to Canada, I was introduced to the systemic issues associated with the Canadian Government, resource extraction industries, and rural communities throughout Canada. I felt that a graduate degree seemed to be the best route to gain a better understanding of the issues and subsequently pursue a career that would provide an opportunity to work towards a better future for all parties.

Before this degree, I was living in Vancouver while completing a degree in Forest Resource Management and working as a professional Fishing Guide throughout coastal BC.

I decided to come to UBC Forestry because I felt that the faculty would provide the best opportunity to pursue the field that I felt most strongly about. I found that the people within this faculty have a wealth of knowledge and are happy to help. It is the people in the Faculty that helped make this decision an easy one for me.

I am most curious about understanding how political structures work within the scope of resource extraction in BC. It is a highly dynamic political landscape centered around resources that are equally as dynamic and complex. What interests me the most is understanding how these industries work and what can be done to make them more socially responsible while maintaining a profitable and sustainable future.

I am an avid hunter, fisherman, and rock climber. If I’m going to relax, I need to be in the water or on a rock.


Alice Miao
During my graduate study, I am hoping to answer two research questions: 1) how urban forests are currently understood within the broader context of Canada’s forests and forestry practices, and 2) examine BC municipal urban forestry strategies in terms of their approach to forest inventory.


Melike Karaca Bulut
I was living in the US to improve my language ability.


Riley Finn
I decided to pursue my degree because the work I was doing with my employer, Raincoast Conservation Foundation, aligned with what I was interested in doing in the future. There was an opportunity to take my work a step further in collaboration with Dr. Tara Martin and UBC so it all came together really nicely.

I was living in Vancouver after completing my undergraduate degree in the Faculty of Forestry here. I was working for Raincoast Conservation Foundation and helping them collate spatial data on salmon and habitat in the Lower Fraser River. I was also working with them on initiating ecological governance in the Lower Fraser in an attempt to better manage and restore the aquatic ecosystems of the area. I decided to study at UBC Forestry for the opportunity to work with Dr. Tara Martin. Her work in Canada and Australia is incredibly inspiring, and I find her unique approach to thinking about the use of conservation resources extremely practical, effective, and refreshing compared to the status quo. I also look forward to rejoining the Forestry community where I had a great experience here as an undergrad.

I am most looking forward to advancing my understanding of my chosen field and the methods used.

To relax I like to listen to music and podcasts as well as cook. In my spare time, I like to get out into nature.


Christina Howard
The interlinked threats of climate change and mountain pine beetle have created uncertainty related to whether British Columbia’s forests will be able to maintain a sustainable level of timber supply in the future. It has also been established that British Columbia’s forests can play an important role in the adaptation to, and mitigation of, climate change. These complicated interactions provide motivation for this project, in which the goal is to determine the best forest management actions for storing the most amount of carbon while also maintaining a sustainable level of timber output.

After attending the Faculty of Forestry at UBC for an undergraduate degree in Conservation Science, I realized that in order to continue making in impact in the field that I am interested, I needed to continue my education. I am fascinated by the role that computer software and optimization programming can play in solving natural resources issues. I believe that my ability to help create sustainable resource systems that will help mitigate climate change will be greatly increased by continuing my education as a graduate student.

After finishing my undergraduate degree at UBC, I completed a 2,200-mile through-hike of the Appalachian Trail from Georgia to Maine, USA. Upon completion of the trail, I worked with the Forest Carbon Accounting Team and Natural Resources Canada in Victoria, BC. My main role with the team was to update information regarding bioenergy from harvest residues, which is a mitigation strategy within their larger modelling structure. Just before returning to UBC for my MSc I had the opportunity to volunteer within the Energy Sustainability Research Laboratory at Ohio State University. At this lab, I helped examine the geospatial potential of using geothermal energy throughout the contiguous United States, which was done significantly with geospatial mapping using ArcGIS.

When choosing what to study for my undergraduate degree, the Natural Resources Conservation Science degree in the Faculty of Forestry at UBC was a natural choice. It was the perfect intersection of all the topics that interested me, including climate change, natural resources systems, political science, sociology, and ecology. After completing my undergraduate degree, and completing work with Natural Resources Canada, it became clear that the graduate programs at UBC would be an excellent continuation of my studies. The programs offered at UBC Forestry are wonderfully interdisciplinary, and I know that whatever I work on for my MSc degree will encompass many different disciplines.

I am looking forward to being completely immersed in an academic setting as a graduate student. I am excited to interact with my research peers who are just as excited about natural resource issues as I am. I am also interested in learning as much as I can about the different up-and-coming software that my peers will be working on.

I greatly enjoy hiking and backpacking, which is what inspired me to hike the entire Appalachian Trail in 2017. I also am a certified yoga teacher and practice quite often. I enjoy trail running and road running equally, and would like to run my first half-marathon in 2019. I am a vegetarian and try to cook vegan as much as possible for myself, and I like to try new recipes!


Robbie johnson
Forest and Water Resources Under Changing Climates – Examining the regional effects of various climate change scenarios on forest cover, and how they will influence the hydrologic response of a watershed.


Michael Procko
TBD

During my fourth year of undergrad, I was a tutor for the University of Colorado’s athletic program and a learning assistant for an upper-division evolutionary biology course. It was during these times that I realized I never had a bad day at work. Sure, there were some difficult days, but I never felt tremendously overwhelmed by the tasks at hand. Teaching is something I slowly learned to fall in love with, and by the end of the year, I became positive that a career in education was the direction I wanted my life to take. However, I think it makes a world of a difference when you’re teaching people who actually want to learn, instead of people who feel like they’re being forced to learn. Thus, I’m eventually looking at obtaining my PhD so I can spend my time teaching university students.

I spent four years at The University of Colorado Boulder studying Ecology and Evolutionary Biology. My undergraduate honors thesis was largely focused on quantitative conservation biology, and I spent a lot of time working with Dr. Daniel Doak to refine my abilities in statistical analysis and matrix modelling. After that, I couldn’t find a career path that I believed I would be truly happy in, so I spent my time working in a brewpub in order to save money for my next step: graduate school. I also spent some time volunteering with Colorado Parks and Wildlife tracking and trapping mountain lions for a big research project they’re currently working on, but unfortunately, I was never able to volunteer on a day where we actually caught one of the cats.

I took a road trip to Vancouver with my best friend when I was a freshman in undergrad. On our first night in town, we stayed at a grungy little hotel on East Hastings, which was quite the experience. But the next day, we set off towards the West Coast to see the ocean. We were quite surprised when we accidentally ran into UBC’s campus, but I noticed I immediately felt at home there, and once we got back to Colorado, I immediately began planning a way to make it back to BC. There was something about the campus that drew me in, and after that, I knew I didn’t have any choice but to pursue that dream.

It may seem a bit surprising, but I absolutely LOVE math. I’ve heard really great things about some of the statistics courses at UBC/neighboring universities that UBC partners with, and I can’t wait to get my hands on some nice, clean coding curriculum (preferably in RStudio, because that’s where I’m most comfortable). I’m very excited to continue honing in on my abilities with numbers and statistical analysis, and I believe that applying this sort of knowledge to something as important as conservation biology is incredibly important work. Of course, the landscapes surrounding our research areas are bound to be astounding as well, but I just can’t seem to get my mind off the immense datasets I’m hoping to encounter.

In my free time, I really enjoy hiking, kayaking, and being outdoors. Even if I’m not actively participating in any sort of recreational activity, there’s something really surreal about having my body pressed against the earth. However, I’m certainly not opposed to the occasional video game session, brewpub tour, or concert. I absolutely love music and listen to practically any genre I’ve ever been introduced to. I’ve been a drummer since I was 9 years old, and if I’m ever alone, you’ll likely find me tapping some sort of polyrhythm on whatever I can get my hands on. Though I try to avoid doing this around others because I know how annoying it can be.


Xue Yin
I would like to do research on my topics of interest and prepare for a career as a young scientist. I was an undergrad student at UBC Forestry with a good reputation and nice faculty members.

My goal is to deal with programming languages and apply them in Genomic studies.

I enjoy fishing, jogging and watching movies.


Muhammad Emilio Valeri
I decided to pursue a graduate degree in order to get a better understanding of the many topics I am interested in, which include local forest management and small and medium forest enterprises (SMFEs).

Before attending UBC I was living in Jakarta, Indonesia. I received a bachelor’s degree in Economics in 2017.

I chose UBC Forestry because of its outstanding reputation which is due to its having numerous reputable faculty members.

I look forward to learning from various experienced and knowledgeable people.

I enjoy listening to music and reading books.


Felix Poulin
I had an interest in remote sensing and when I met Dr. Coops lab last year, I told myself this is an amazing work environment, I want to be part of it!
I usually work in forestry and I find the remote sensing quite interesting to improve the knowledge that we actually have in forestry. I’m from Québec City, QC, Canada.

I finished my undergrad in Forestry Management at Laval University in December 2018. Since then I worked as a research associate for Dr. Coops and Dr. Alexis Achim. The remote sensing lab is amazing and renowned worldwide I wanted to work with them and learn more about it.

I wanted to improve my English skills and I think it’s a good place for that I like to bike everywhere, it’s my mode of transportation. I like everything that can be done outside: hiking, camping, climbing, skiing, etc.


Noah Kussin-Bordo
I decided to pursue a graduate degree because I wanted to further my education and understanding of fish and fisheries.

I graduated from UBC Forestry and loved my undergrad so much I decided I wanted to come back!

I loved my undergrad experience and wanted to continue learning with the people who first helped spark my interest in B.C.’s forestry sector.

I’m looking forward to gaining more information on otherwise under-researched topics.

I like to hike, fish, and take naps.


Christopher Stinson
For a long time, I have wanted to pursue research using museum specimens, specifically on mammals. I have been developing a possible project involving martens in BC and with Cole Burton starting the WildCo lab and with his expertise in mammalogy, I decided that the time was right to apply. Thankfully, Dr. Burton was agreeable to becoming my supervisor as well. The MSc will also help me further my career working at the Beaty Biodiversity Museum.

I have lived in Vancouver for the past 20 years and worked at UBC for most of that time. I have been the Curatorial Assistant of Mammals, Reptiles, and Amphibians for the past 12 years. UBC Forestry has a great reputation for exemplary research and is internationally renowned. I have had great interactions with members of the Forestry faculty and much of the research into wildlife occurs there at UBC. It was a natural choice for me to pursue a study in Forestry. I was put in contact with Cole Burton through contacts in wildlife biology and our mutual interests aligned to confirm my decision.

The thrill of discovery when I finally bring together all my data – genetic, morphometric, geographic, historical, paleontological, and even cultural – and can describe the relationship, ranges, and contact between the two species of marten in BC. I am also looking forward to wrapping my head around genetics and statistics more thoroughly.

I am an avid wildlife watcher. I maintain a list of every new species of animal I see. I also enjoy hiking, camping, and open water swimming. I am a huge fan of Sci-fi and Fantasy of all kinds and can’t get enough of politics and current affairs.


Alyssa Nonis
Riparian forests and the stream habitats within them are critically important for fish sensitive watersheds. Once fish presence has been determined special forest management activities are required to ensure that forestry practices undertaken maintain the natural watershed processes and conserve the ecological attributes necessary to protect and sustain fish and their habitat. With advances in remote sensing technology, there is now the potential to derive a suite of stream and riparian zone forest attributes using Airborne Laser Scanning. Our long-term research objective is to collaborate with Provincial and Federal forest agencies, as well as forest companies, to promote new tools to map, classify, and analyze streams and associated riparian areas in forested ecosystems. Our ultimate goal is to demonstrate that ALS data can provide accurate characterizations of stream networks and associated riparian vegetation and that these information sources can greatly enhance natural resource management and planning for these stream-riparian systems in which fish are present.

After completing the Natural Resources Conservation program in the Faculty I became interested in fish ecology. I felt that a graduate degree would enable me to specialize and expand my knowledge of fish habitat management. I also hope that my research will contribute to the field and help inform management decisions surrounding forest practices and riparian management.

I met Dr. Scott Hinch through the Natural Resources Conservation program and wanted to be involved with his leading research in Salmonid conservation. Vancouver’s great access to the outdoors was also a draw for me.

My greatest curiosity occurs while working in the field. I am excited to explore my study sites and try to link stream features in which fish depend on the remote sensing applications.

I love skiing, mountain biking, hiking, and climbing occasionally!


Farbod Moheb
Initially, I had no plan of continuing my education right after graduating from Wood Product Processing. As matter of the fact, I was more keen to start a career to apply my skills in the “real world”.

During the Forestry ring ceremony, Dr. Evans and I had a conversation over a potential project that got my attention significantly. After several meetings, I made my decision to quit my job and continue my education. Unlike many who plan in advance to carry on with their education, I had no intention to obtain advanced degrees but just passion on the project itself.

I moved back to Vancouver in 2011. Prior to my immigration to Canada, I was studying Industrial Engineering in Iran. I was admitted to UBC Wood Product Processing in 2015 and graduated in May 2019. I enjoy reading books, playing tennis, getting together with friends and watching movies.


Marcos Kavlin Castaneda
I decided to pursue a graduate degree because I felt it was the best way to move towards my dream job and my goal of working in sustainable development around most of the developing world. I lived in La Paz, Bolivia. I have spent most of my life there, despite being a Canadian citizen, it is home. I completed my undergrad at UBC Forestry and worked in consulting, as a research assistant and as an intern with WCS Bolivia, before deciding to pursue a Master’s and return to UBC Forestry.

I chose UBC Forestry for many reasons: the amazing campus, the friends I already have here, the beautiful city, but most importantly, the quality of the faculty, the opportunity of working with Dr. Rhemtulla, and the open-mindedness I have found at UBC.

I am looking forward to seeing the contrast between reforestation efforts in countries that signed onto the Bonn Challenge (Ecuador) and those that didn’t (Bolivia). I also look forward to gaining more insight into the factors influencing tropical forest restoration and deforestation in South America.

I am in love with Bouldering and go to Squamish in order to do so whenever I get the chance. I am also a big soccer player and a lover of any sport in general. I also enjoy hanging out with friends.


Emilia Muirragui
My undergrad experience at UBC boosted my interest in research and molecular biology. All the volunteering opportunities that I took on made me realize that a thesis-based Master’s was the next step to keep on building my knowledge, techniques, and passion.

Before UBC Forestry I was an undergraduate student in the Biology department at UBC.

I had a great experience while volunteering at the Mansfield Lab. I share their passion and drive.

I’m really looking forward to starting my research project, especially the genetics aspect of it.

I have many different hobbies. Generally, you can find me baking at home, painting or simply watching a good Netflix series.


Robbie Johnson
Pursuing a graduate degree allows me to develop a deeper and more in-depth understanding of a topic that I find fascinating (which I’m sure almost any graduate student would say). I like to challenge myself and I’m sure the final reward will be, well, rewarding.

Before attending UBC I was mainly based out of Canmore, AB taking advantage of the freedoms associated with a seasonal worker. After graduating from the University of Calgary in 2015 I worked during the warmer months as a part of the flood restoration crew, rebuilding backcountry trails and campgrounds that were damaged/destroyed during the 2013 floods. I then worked the first half of the winters at the Canmore Nordic Centre as a snowmaker and took the rest of the winter off to travel. I was fortunate enough to be able to do this for three years, travelling to Central America, Japan and New Zealand/Australia to pursue my passion for surfing, snowboarding and fly fishing. This most recent summer (2019) I have been working as a hydrometric technician, monitoring drought-affected streams across Vancouver Island.

UBC is a wonderful campus and it is a great privilege to be surrounded by so many researchers/profs at the top of their field across all disciplines whether it be forestry, hydrology, earth sciences… the list goes on.

I’m really looking forward to contributing to an aspect of hydrology that, despite being studied for over a century, is filled with so many uncertainties and unknowns.

My two greatest passions are snowboarding and fly fishing as well as surfing if I find myself next to a suitable piece of water. I love camping and hanging out with friends and am also a musician. For fun, I like to laugh at anything that is funny.


Sibo Tian
I love science and researching and want to contribute to academia.

I live in Marine Drive Student Residence when I was an undergraduate at UBC Forestry.

I have studied here for two years and think it is a good place for research and studies. In order to publish papers.

I like fictional stories and youtube.


Laura Grant
I felt as though to go farther in my career I needed to pursue higher education.

For the past two years, I had been working as a riparian buffer technician with the Upper Susquehanna Coalition. In this role, I implemented riparian buffers, throughout the Upper Susquehanna Watershed, on both private and public lands.

I decided to study at UBC Forestry because I had never been to the Pacific Northwest, and UBC had a very diverse program.

I am very excited to have the opportunity to develop my thesis and explore a topic I am truly passionate about.

I really enjoy exploring new areas, whether they are urban centers or wild landscapes. I also enjoy photography and rollerblading.


Samuel Shulman
After working in structural engineering for a year, I began to feel that I was simply applying rules and standards or plugging values into models and spreadsheets. I missed the challenge of learning a new subject or testing theories in a lab. I also became interested in wood design but was stuck working with steel and concrete. I decided that a Master’s degree would be the perfect way for me to become involved in the exciting new field of tall timber building design as a contributor rather than as a user.

Before coming to Vancouver, I was living in Montreal, where I was born and raised. I had graduated from Building Engineering at Concordia University a year earlier and had been working as a junior structural engineer for a small design firm in the city.

Primarily because UBC Forestry is at the forefront of research and development in timber construction in Canada. One only needs to look to the university’s Brock Commons Tallwood House to understand why. After months researching Master’s programs, I knew that UBC Forestry and Dr. Loss’ research was the perfect fit for me. It also doesn’t hurt that UBC happens to be at the doorstep to one of the most beautiful parts of the country.

I am most curious about the day to day work of a researcher. Having spent the last five years either studying or working in design, engineering research will be a completely new experience for me. I am eager to work in a lab, collaborate with colleagues, attend conferences, and learn as much as I can during my time at UBC.

I love being outdoors (one of the reasons UBC appealed to me so much), whether it be hiking, cycling, climbing, or simply walking around the city. When I’m not enjoying the outdoors, it’s probably because I’m at a record shop or at home listening to selections from my 45 collection.


Daniel Sax
It was towards the end of my time as an undergrad when I came to realize that there existed intersections between my studies in sociology and my passion for exploring the natural world. Since then, I have sought to forge a path of academic inquiry that would allow me to research the complex interactions between urban populations and their increasingly green cities. A graduate degree presented an incredible opportunity for me to continue my growth as a researcher and to begin answering the questions that have presented themselves to me since my time as an undergraduate.

I was working as an arborist with the Morris Arboretum of the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, PA.

The broad range of inquiries represented among the students and faculty of the Department of Forestry made it clear that UBC was the ideal place for me to explore my own interdisciplinary interests. My communications with my advisor only reaffirmed my conviction that UBC would provide me with the resources and support I needed to pursue my research questions.

I’m most excited by the highly collaborative nature of the Department of Forestry and, more specifically, among the students and faculty involved in the study of Urban Forestry. I cannot wait to share ideas with the vibrant community I’m soon to join.

I am always available to hike or spend time exploring the outdoors, and I will never say no to an invitation to run, climb, or play Ultimate. On quieter days, I like to relax with a book, spend time in the garden, cook a semi-elaborate meal, do a crossword or two, listen to or make music, or learn a new board game.


Chaoyue Zhang
I decided to pursue a graduate degree to study in-depth on timber buildings.

Before attending UBC, I lived in Vancouver, where I pursued an achieved bachelor’s degree at UBC Forestry.

The connections I established in my undergraduate life are the reason why I decided to study at UBC Forestry.

I am looking forward to studying methods of professional academic communication.

Some of my interests are badminton, hiking, karaoke, and hotpot.


Juliana Kaufmanis
Pursuing knowledge and furthering our understanding is something inherently attractive to me. I am incredibly interested in the work of my two supervisors and knew that getting the chance to work with them would be something I would love to do. In the field of ecology, I feel like we are fortunate to be learning about systems that are inherently so valuable (the food system, for instance). So valuable that I feel learning further about them can only be a great idea both in the face of the current challenges humanity is facing and for my future career prospects.

I did my undergraduate degree in UBC Forestry and graduated in spring 2018. During my undergrad, I had the fortune of working in Dr. John Richardson’s lab (stream and riparian ecology) for a year, which piqued my interest in ecological research and graduate school. Last summer and fall I completed the UBC Farm Practicum where I got my hands dirty on the farm and furthered my interest in sustainable food systems research. For the past year, I have spent most of it working and living in Vancouver as a volleyball coach and a UX designer for a software consulting company. This past winter I was fortunate enough to spend some time travelling as well.

I decided to study here for the great academic reputation of the institution and faculty, my supervisors, the city, and my positive experience as an undergraduate student here.

I would say I am most curious about being on the ‘investigative’ side of the academic fence, in contrast to undergrad. I am also curious about what I don’t know I could be curious about!

I like to draw and be outdoors.


Andrea Bittencourt Moreira
I wanted to have a career in Forest Biometrics.

Before attending UBC Forestry, I was in Brazil working as a forestry consultant.

I wanted to have a Canadian credential, know more about forestry in British Columbia and hopefully prepare for becoming a Registered Professional Forester.

I’m looking forward to experiencing university life in Canada.


Echo Cao

Before attending UBC Forestry, I was living in Vancouver and working as a CPA and Business consultant.

My interests include environmental and sustainable economics, scientific fundamental for sustainable finance, yoga and hiking.


Qing Qiu
It is truly inspiring to witness how automation has changed many industries and how big data analysis has brought valuable insights. The promising future of applying big data analysis to the wood industry strongly motivates me to pursue a master’s degree in this field

I studied at Beijing Forestry University before I transferred to the WPP program in Forestry at UBC.

UBC provided me with an excellent learning experience for my undergraduate study. I believe UBC’s numerous teaching and researching resources, its commitment to innovation, and the diverse community can lead me to a fulfilling and meaningful graduate journey.

The opportunity of applying interdisciplinary knowledge and collaborating with an industry partner always excites me.

In my spare time, I enjoy hanging out with friends, cooking and sleeping if that counts.


Alyssa Nonis
My passion for fisheries conservation has emerged from growing up angling with my family and pursuing a B.Sc. in Natural Resources Conservation. My undergraduate degree allowed me to explore research topics that aligned with my curiosities, furthering my passion for research. I am hoping that my M.Sc. will have the potential to inform fisheries management decisions related to forestry applications.

I chose UBC because being apart of Dr. Scott Hinch’s research laboratory provides an outstanding opportunity to work with and alongside others who are passionate about salmon conservation, along with being exposed to leading-edge research.

I would also like to collaborate with the Integrated Remote Sensing Studio.

I enjoy exploring the outdoors, especially skiing, mountain biking, fishing, backpacking, and climbing.


Jen Baron
I was fortunate to have multiple opportunities during my undergraduate degree to develop research projects around questions that I was passionate about. Through these opportunities, I found a love for the research process. Pursuing a graduate degree seemed like the logical next step to continue fuelling my curiosity.

Prior to beginning my MSc I completed a BSc in Environmental Science (HSp) at Western University in London, Ontario. While at Western, I worked on multiple projects related to forest ecology. My undergraduate thesis investigated a secondary invasion, whereby the emerald ash borer interacts with ecological integrity to facilitate European buckthorn. Through an NSERC USRA, I investigated the impact of climate change on Pinus strobus using dendrochronological and stable isotopic techniques.

The Faculty of Forestry at UBC is one of the world’s leading institutions for forestry education and research. Gaining access to the faculty and resources associated with the department played a key role in my decision to come to UBC. I was also very interested in working with Dr. Daniels, who has allowed me to continue working in the field of dendrochronology and begin investigating the role of wildlife in the context of global environmental change.

For me, the most rewarding part of the research process is after data has been collected and initial processing is complete. During this stage, early interpretations often reveal surprises and spark new questions that can be tested. I have a soft spot for statistics and data analysis and am always excited to learn new quantitative techniques that can be used to help interpret results.

I’m an avid rock climber and am very excited to be living in a city where the sport is so popular! I also spend several weeks a year backpacking, often in Latin America, and love to immerse myself in new languages and cultures.


Marcos Kavlin Castaneda
Remote sensing analysis of Forest restoration in Bolivia and Ecuadorian tropical rain-forests, as well as a multivariate analysis of the drivers behind it.

Working as a research assistant at the university I realized what graduate school involved, and the freedom it allowed you to pursue your interests. That motivated me greatly to pursue a graduate degree, as well as the fact that I felt it would help me get to the type of job I wanted.

I was living in Vancouver, where I completed my undergraduate degree at UBC Forestry, worked as a research assistant in the faculty as well, and worked in a consulting firm for a while.

I decided to work at UBC Forestry because of my supervisor. After talking with her about our interests, I realized we had a lot in common. This really motivated me to pursue a Masters’s degree in her lab. I already knew the faculty as well, which greatly facilitated the process.

I’m looking forward to analyzing the data from my research and hopefully finding some interesting results! I also look forward to sharing my research with all the amazing students in the faculty and learning from them.

I love bouldering and playing soccer! I do both on a weekly basis and they keep me sane.


Marina Melanidis
My research interests revolve around the role biodiversity and ecosystem conservation plays in climate mitigation and adaptation, and how to design policies and strategies that address both the climate and ecological crises (often called “nature-based solutions” or “natural climate solutions”). I plan to study the application and potential of nature-based solutions at international and national scales. I am particularly interested in how nature-based solutions can link climate and biodiversity narratives to foster holistic and systems-thinking solutions that work for climate, nature, and people.


Tomiyosi Bola
Pursuing a graduate degree was a decision I made without hesitation, to acquire skills in new technologies and methods that have developed in the field of forest measurements and biometrics, I decided to pursue a graduate degree. Decision making in forest resource management requires accurate information obtained using the best practices with advanced data computational techniques which will help to promote sustainable forest management especially in decision and policymaking with regards to natural resources. In other to achieve my goal of being a proficient data analyst and biometrician in the field of forestry, I decided to pursue a graduate degree in forest biometrics “Prior to the commencement of my program at UBC, I was living in Nigeria where I was a graduate research assistant at the Department of Forestry and Wildlife Resource Management, University of Calabar, Calabar. I was responsible for checking assignments, tests, and grading according to the marking scheme. During my time at the department, I counselled students through office hours and also maintained an atmosphere of academic learning and advancement to facilitate learning and development of critical thinking skills.

I also had training and internships in various institutes such as Centre for Space Research and Application, FUTA, Forestry Research Institute of Nigeria in Ibadan, Nigeria.
I decided to study at UBC Forestry when I discovered the Mastercard Foundation Scholars Program that fully supports students from Africa to have their graduate study at UBC. Coupled with the fact that I was able to secure the interest of a faculty member who specializes in the exact field of forestry that I admire which is forest biometrics. This gave me enough motivation to apply for the scholarship which I eventually received. I was one of the 23 selected candidates from over 4000 applicants.

UBC offers so many resources that help students succeed in their program and the Faculty of Forestry provides a learning and research platform formed by a combined theoretical and experimental approach, backed by well-equipped experimental and computational facilities. This has strongly encouraged me to study at UBC Forestry. At the moment, I am presently enjoying every aspect of my graduate program. It has been a learning process so far and an avenue to further develop my skills in every area needed. I am looking forward to the research aspect of my graduate program, especially the data collection, computation and analysis aspect.

When I am not in class or the office, I like to play ping pong (table tennis), watch movies, hang out with friends, or go to the beach.


Brandon Bung
Exploring ways forest products could be applied beyond traditional applications.

I lived in Sweden for a year and came back to pursue this degree. I plan to move back to Stockholm after graduation.

It wouldn’t have felt right to complete this degree anywhere else. It would have been foolish to turn down an opportunity to work with both Gary and Dominik.

I would like to learn about delivered cost and life cycle carbon performance for wood fuel. I am also excited to be working on a real project with a real partner organization.

I would also like to seek out the next greatest cheeseburger institution in North America.


Jacqueline Huard
Forage fish play a critical role in marine food webs in the Salish Sea. They feed on plankton and transfer this energy to predators like Chinook salmon. In turn, Chinook are an important prey item for the federally listed Southern resident killer whale, playing an important role in their survival. Any variations in forage fish productivity and distribution resulting from human impacts (e.g., shipping, expanding ports) can contribute to widespread and unanticipated ecological impacts (e.g., recent losses of iconic predators like salmon, and whales). Protection of forage fish and their habitats through improving sustainable coastal ecosystem management practices would ensure the health of forage fish populations, their dependent predators and the ecosystem as a whole. My project will increase our understanding of how to reduce human impacts on coastal nearshore habitats and thus provide resources and information to habitat managers to do so. Data gathered as a result of this project will support the development of evidence-based management tools, which will help to improve sustainable coastal ecosystem management practices in the Strait of Georgia and surrounding areas.

After working in the environmental field for six years I’ve learned that I miss learning! I want to take my career to a higher level when it comes to applying science to environmental challenges and I want to move from a broad generalist working throughout all of western Canada to a narrower field of coastal marine ecology.

I moved to Vancouver in 2012 to attend BCIT’s Fish, Wildlife, and Recreation program after which, in 2014 I worked in consulting as a wildlife biologist for Dillon Consulting Limited before starting at UBC.

What drew me to UBC Forestry is Dr. Tara Martin’s work on conservation decision making. I was first introduced to her and her work through another mentor and we quickly realized we have similar interests. I knew there was so much I could learn from her that I had to find a way to make it into her lab at UBC Forestry.

I am most excited to return to a place that so values learning and fosters an inquisitive and inclusive culture. I look forward to many seminars, workshops, and hopefully lengthy passionate discussions with peers and mentors that challenge and expands my understanding of the world.

BC is full of so many great things to do for fun and there’s just not enough time to do it all! My favorite way to spend a weekend is kayaking on local rivers like the Chehalis or the Lynn or backcountry touring in the mountains! For longer adventures, I like to get out sailing on my boat (and home) in search of wildlife and wild places.