Excel in Science: in conversation with National Geographic Explorers

November 17th, 2021

Excel in Science will again team up with the National Geographic Society to bring another Virtual Explorer Event to your screens. This year we hear from three amazing explorers from diverse backgrounds and in very different areas of science. They will talk about how they came to be National Geographic Explorers and what their research is all about.

Wednesday 1 December, from 5pm
Register for the session

We are excited to hear from:
Prem Gill: Prem is polar conservationist and PHD candidate leading the “Seals from Space” project with the Scott Polar Research Institute, British Antarctic Survey, and WWF, using high-resolution satellite imagery to study polar seals and their sea ice habitats. With the BBC, Prem is a researcher helping to produce the landmark wildlife series Frozen Planet. As a previous guest lecturer on AI and immersive technology for Oxford University’s biodiversity, conservation and management MSc, Prem led a workshop and public event on AR/VR and data science for conservation with the Digital Catapult and the Alan Turing Institute. Prem is also founder of Polar Impact, a network of racial and ethnic minorities in polar research, where he spearheads projects to retain talent from non-traditional backgrounds within polar and conservation science, and change the face of polar Exploration.

Priscilla Alpizar: Priscilla is a bat ecologist and conservationist with a passion for informal environmental education. She has been working with bats for 15 years, focusing on the impact that agricultural landscapes have on these animals. Priscilla is currently finishing her PhD at Ulm University, focusing on the effects that banana plantations have on native nectar-feeding bats. She is also a member of the Costa Rican bat conservation program and the Latin American and Caribbean network for bat conservation. Priscilla firmly believes that conservation cannot be complete without education, so she always complements her academic work with workshops and informal environmental education programs. She is currently also working as an environmental planning engineer in Germany.

Gergana Daskalova: Gergana is a global change ecologist fascinated by how humans are reshaping the planet’s biodiversity. The key aim of Gergana’s research is to determine what are the sources of the complex patterns of biodiversity change observed over time around the world. From forest cover change around the world to climate warming in the Arctic and more, Gergana is investigating how and why earth’s biota is changing across the anthropocene. Gergana is also the creator of the coding club initiative which has been delivering free training in statistics and coding online and in-person for over five years. She also has a passion for photography and videography and has spent years taking photos of birds and landscape around her home village Tyurkmen in Bulgaria. Gergana is starting a Schmidt Science Fellowship at the start of 2022 for which she will channel her personal experience of seeing villages get more depopulated over time into a research project on land abandonment and its potential for conservation.

Excel in Science is a new programme that has launched within the School of Life Sciences and aims to support our students and to tackle the fact that BAME students and those from disadvantaged backgrounds are under-represented in funded postgraduate research and hence remain under-represented in academia as a whole.

We look forward to seeing you there!

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November 26th, 2021 at 9:49 pm

Gail Bembridge

Can students register to view these sessions?

November 29th, 2021 at 12:29 pm

Cyrus M

Hi Gail, yes – students are more than welcome to register to view the sessions. Thanks.

November 30th, 2021 at 9:43 am


Please can this be recorded so those of us who can’t make the 5-6 slot can watch at a later date?

December 1st, 2021 at 10:22 am

Cyrus M

Hi Emma. The event will be recorded, yes. Keep an eye out for another Campus News article after the event that will share the link to the recording. Thanks.

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