Nureen Faiza Anisha one of our Alumnus shares her story.
My interest in the field of climate change was triggered by the climatology course I took in my undergraduate final year in BUET, where I was studying water resources engineering (WRE). I was so driven by that 2 credit course, I did my undergraduate thesis on delineating the relationship between climatic parameters and water quality parameters in rivers. After graduating, I joined as a researcher in Centre for Climate Change and Environment (C3ER), BRAC University and my interest in studying about climate change kept increasing. In the entire country, it was only Independent University, Bangladesh (IUB), which offered a graduate level degree in Climate Change and Development, jointly with International Centre for Climate Change and Development (ICCCAD). Moreover, the classes under the program were being taken by top academics and experts of the country, like Dr. Niaz Ahmed Khan, Dr. K B M Sajjadur Rashid, Dr. Shahnaz Huq Hossain, Dr. Ainun Nishat, Dr. Saleemul Huq, who have years of experience of teaching in top engineering, geography and development schools in the country and around the world. Some of the other faculties who were taking classes were from top schools like National University of Singapore (NUS), Durham University, University of Waterloo etc. and had taught in universities in different parts of the globe. So, I decided to join this program and being part of this program has been one of the best learning experiences of my life. The School of Environmental Science and Management (SESM) had given me full tuition waivers for obtaining CGPA of 4.00 and it not just helped me fund my education at IUB, it always gave me a drive to work hard to keep up the academic excellence in every semester. I have got multiple times more than what I had thought I would receive from this program, both in terms of skills and experiences. Also, my professors from this program had given me fantastic recommendations for my admission in universities in USA, which helped me receive full funded admissions to 7 universities in USA, including top notch programs like Columbia University’s MA in Climate and Society, Oregon State University’s MS in Environmental Science, University of Rhode Island’s MS in Environmental and Natural Resources Economics and Tufts University’s MA in Environmental and Regional Planning and Policy. Also, while doing my MS in Climate Change and Development at IUB, I received two international fellowships, REX Karmaveer Global Fellowship conferred by iCongo, India and very prestigious Asia Foundation Development Fellowship by The Asia Foundation. I am wholeheartedly grateful to SESM, IUB and ICCCAD, for the professors, resources and all the other kind of support and encouragement they had provided me.
After completing my MS in Climate Change and Development at Independent University, Bangladesh with a successful thesis defence in August, 2017, I joined my second Masters program in Oregon State University (OSU) in USA with a fully funded Graduate Laurels Scholarship in September, 2017. This school ranks among the top earth and environmental science program in US and is among the top 30 environmental science graduate programs in the world according to QS, USNews and Times ranking. As of December 2017, I have completed my first term in Oregon State University with a CGPA 4.00. As an extension of my work back in Bangladesh, my current research work is on the climate-water-society nexus and my courses are focused on carbon cycles and sequestration, wetland ecology and socio technological aspect of environmental dynamics. Very recently, I have been chosen through a rigorous selection process to be a member of a faculty-led team at OSU that shall work in hurricane affected Puerto Rico in Spring 2018 for strengthening food security and sustainability on the island. The selection board had appreciated my relevant work experiences in Bangladesh and thought that my experiences and knowledge from a developing country would be very instrumental in this project. One of the most phenomenal things that I have achieved after coming here is that I have recently been chosen as a member to the Climate Action Advisory Board of the city I live in (Corvallis) at Oregon and will be working with the Mayor of the city of Corvallis to make the city more climate resilient as well as climate friendly. I am not just the youngest member on the board, I am also the only Non-American in the cohort. I am indeed a very proud alumnus of the CCD program and hope to proudly represent Bangladesh at OSU.
Nureen Faiza Anisha is Graduate Student of Environmental Science, Oregon State University, Corvallis.