NMC students present at conservation conference in Guam

Posted on Mar 14 2023


From left, Northern Marianas College student Alexander Tudela, NMC associate professor Dr. Willson Gaul, and NMC students Jaden Villacrusis and Angel Santos at the Marianas Terrestrial Conservation Conference in Guam. (NMC)

Northern Marianas College students Jaden Villacrusis, Alexander Tudela, Angel Santos, and associate professor Dr. Willson Gaul attended the Marianas Terrestrial Conservation Conference in Guam last month, giving the students an opportunity to showcase their research and learn about the various conservation efforts being carried out in Guam and the CNMI.

At the conference, held from Feb. 20 to 25, 2023, allowed Villacrusis, Tudela, and Gaul to present their research on the songs of CNMI birds. Tudela was honored with the “Best Student Poster” award for his research poster on the “Dawn Chorus of CNMI Birds.”

The conference also included a field trip to the mangroves in Sasa Bay, where the students explored the diverse organisms that inhabit the area. They also visited the watershed restoration project in Inalahan, which was a moving experience for the students as they witnessed efforts to help restore the badlands of Guam.

Villacrusis, who had many memorable experiences from the conference, said, “Interacting with different individuals allowed me to make connections and open myself up to a variety of internship/learning opportunities that I was not aware of before attending the conference.”

Tudela said, “I learned a lot at the conference about conservation efforts. I have a greater understanding of the CNMI’s need for funding to conduct certain projects.”

Santos, for his part, said, “An interesting part of the conference was hearing from various professionals and listening to their research presentations that cover both native plants and animals. It was interesting to hear the breakthrough findings of certain research projects, management efforts to combat invasive species, and species behavioral patterns.”

For more information about the research presented, email Gaul at willson.gaul@marianas.edu(NMC)

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