University of Findlay’s Benjamin Dolan, Ph.D. Receives Fulbright Specialist Award
Benjamin Dolan, Ph.D. will take his expertise in biology with him to Escuela Superior Politecnica Del Litoral University (ESPOL) in Ecuador. Dolan’s trip is part of the Fulbright program between the U.S. Department of State and the Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board, aiming to exchange knowledge and establish partnerships between participants, institutions, and communities throughout the world.
Dolan is one of 400 U.S. citizens who will share his expertise with host institutions abroad. “I will be working to build an undergraduate research program in the department of biology. The project will be an extension of my work with the Ecological Research as Education Network (EREN), and it will extend EREN’s Permanent Forest Plot Project to South America,” said Dolan. The research project will allow Dolan and undergraduates to determine carbon storage and sequestration rates in the local forests and compare it to other forests in North America. Students will set up monitoring plots in the forest, collect data, and create models to predict future carbon storage. “My hope is that students from UF will travel to Ecuador and work with ESPOL students to resample forest plots and continue long-term monitoring,” Dolan said.
The Fulbright Program operates in more than 160 countries worldwide, and since its establishment in 1946, has given more than 400,000 students, scholars, teachers, artists, and scientists the opportunity to study, teach and conduct research, exchange ideas, and contribute to finding solutions to shared international concerns. Fulbright specialists work to address critical global issues in all disciplines, while building relationships, knowledge, and leadership in support of the long-term interests of the United States.
Dolan is excited to develop a long-term project between students at ESPOL University and future U.S. students, but he also believes the experience can beneficial well after he leaves and comes back home. “The program will provide experience and knowledge that will make me a better instructor and a better ecologist,” said Dolan. “Sharing my knowledge and skills about undergraduate research will improve teaching and learning opportunities for students beyond UF.”
For more information on the Fulbright Program, visit the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs website. For more information on the biology program at the University of Findlay, please visit the department’s webpage.