Carey Shiho Nishizuka Demapan left Saipan last week and is set to start the fall semester at University of Hawaii at Hilo. The Mt. Carmel School alumna earned a scholarship at the Western Association of Schools and Colleges-accredited co-educational university
Demapan is a Micronesia Challenge Young Champion and got a full ride to study a two-year marine science degree with an option on oceanography at UH-Hilo, one of three universities under the UH educational system.
“I’m interested in the field of marine science and have always been fascinated with the rich marine life that surrounds the islands,” said Demapan, who finished a natural resources management degree at the Northern Marians College.
“I’ve worked on different conservation projects by joining various community events where we also visit schools,” added the Excellence in Service award recipient and the second honor of this year’s NMC graduating class last May.
Demapan said giving back to the community has been one of her goals in trying to keep the CNMI a better place to live in. “We must work together in the conservation of our land and other natural resources. Help preserve them so future generations could benefit from it.”
The NMC Environmental Natural Resource Organization Club president had her internship at the Bureau of Environmental and Coastal Quality. Her internship lasted from January 2015 to July 2016 under the guidance of Jihan Buniag and Avra Heller of the Coral Reef Initiative project.
Buniag is CRI’s Education and Outreach coordinator, while Heller is the Coral Reef Project coordinator of the Nonpoint Source and Marina Monitoring Team under manager Fran Castro at BECQ.
One of Demapan’s duties as an intern at BECQ is promoting the Micronesia Challenge initiative of conserving 20-30 percent of near-shore marine terrestrial resources by 2020, which is four years from now.
Demapan, in her exit report, said what she achieved on her role of spreading awareness on the MC initiative and served as a role model to the youth of the CNMI. “My task to spread awareness of MC’s initiative and purpose was done in over 28 events.”
“These events were conducted at various locations such as schools, Laolao Bay, beaches, and other public areas. Many of the events lasted more than a day, but typically lasted no more than three days like the annual environmental expo,” added Demapan.
The Whispering Palms School camp out, Joeten Kiyu Public Library, Flame Tree Arts Festival, Tinian Agricultural Festival, and Tourism/Ocean Conservancy Summit are some of the events where she conducted presentations.
The Micronesia Challenge, Watershed, and Coral Reef posters, Managaha Flyer stand, marine resources booklet, and the CRI factsheet are the products and information materials that she helped create during her more than one-year internship at BECQ.