AquaFish has supported more than 500 students pursuing undergraduate and graduate degrees in aquaculture, fisheries, aquatic ecology, economics, engineering, and many other disciplines. Some of our students who are or have been supported are featured below.

Moureen Matuha

Status: Alumni
Nationality: Uganda
Degree: Master's
  • Institution: Auburn University
  • Major Professor: Dr. Joseph Molnar
  • Supported through: 2015
  • Thesis Title: Mobile Phone Use in Ugandan Aquaculture: Farmer Experiences and Aspirations
Biography:

Moureen, originally from Uganda, graduated with her Bachelors in Environmental Science Technology and Management from Kyambogo University. Before beginning her Masters, she volunteered with the National Fisheries Resources Research Institute (NaFIRRI), where she was moved by her interactions with women farm owners. 

With support from AquaFish, Moureen received a Masters in Fisheries and Allied Aquaculture from Auburn University in 2015. Her Masters research involved expanding an already existing cell phone-based aquaculture market for Ugandan farmers. Moureen plans to continue to work in aquaculture outreach in her future career.

Ravelina Velasco

Status: Alumni
Nationality: Philippines
Degree: PhD
  • Institution: Central Luzon State University
  • Major Professor: Dr. Remedios Bolivar and Emmanuel Vera Cruz
  • Supported through: 2011
  • Thesis Title: Biological stress markers associated with the growth of Nile tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus) reared at different stocking densities
Biography:

Dr. Ravelina Velasco developed an interest in studying fisheries at CLSU at a young age, as her father was the former Dean of CLSU’s College of Fisheries, and nurtured a passion for research. After completing her Bachelor’s in Aquaculture at CLSU, Ravelina continued on to pursue a PhD at CLSU under the advisory of long-time AquaFish partner and current Regional Center for Excellence (RCE) Coordinator, Dr. Remedios Bolivar. 

In 2008, Ravelina became a distinguished Borlaug Leap Fellow through the support of her advisor Dr. Remedios Bolivar, as well as AquaFish Director Dr. Hillary Egna and AquaFish Project PI Dr. Russell Borski. As a Borlaug fellow, Ravelina had the opportunity to collaborate with researchers at North Carolina State University (NCSU) and at WorldFish in Malaysia. 

Ravelina completed her PhD research in 2011 on the biological stress markers associated with the growth of Nile tilapia reared at different stocking densities. Shortly after graduating, Ravelina received a job as a Research Associate and Program Coordinator for the National Tilapia Research and Development Program at the Freshwater Aquaculture Center at CLSU. This would be her seventh consecutive research project with CLSU since 2011. In June 2015, Ravelina will transition into a permanent position as a CLSU level one Instructor.

Rezwana Sharmin

Status: Alumni
Nationality: Bangladesh
Degree: Master's
  • Institution: Bangladesh Agricultural University
  • Major Professor: Dr. Abdul Wahab
  • Supported through: 2013
  • Thesis Title: Evaluation of Experimental Pond Units Used for Polyculture of Tilapia and Silver carp in fertilized and fed conditions
Biography:

Rezwana completed a Master's from Bangladesh Agricultural University (BAU) in 2013. Her research involved the growth and production of Nile tilapia and silver carp in polyculture ponds under different fertilizer and feed conditions. Upon graduating, she began work as a Research Fellow in the Water Quality and Pond Dynamics Lab at BAU.

Richard G. Babas

Status: Alumni
Nationality: Philippines
Degree: Bachelor's
  • Institution: Central Luzon State University
  • Supported through: 2006
Biography:

Richard Babas graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Fisheries from Central Luzon State University in 2006. Richard's research was on probiotic use in tilapia aquaculture. Today, he is teaching Agriculture and Fisheries to high schoolers in the Philippines.

Stephanie Ichien

Status: Current Student
Nationality: USA
Degree: Master's
  • Institution: Oregon State University
  • Major Professor: Dr. Michael Harte
  • Supported through: 2011
Degree: PhD
  • Institution: Oregon State University
  • Major Professor: Dr. Hillary Egna
Biography:

Stephanie earned her Masters degree in Marine Resource Management from Oregon State University with AquaFish support in 2011, and is now enrolled in the PhD program in Environmental Sciences at OSU. Her research is on the value and tradeoffs associated with the culture of air breathing fish for small-scale fish farmers. The uniqueness that air breathing fish bring to the food system is inherent in their ability to withstand low oxygen levels often associated with poor water quality. However, there are many tradeoffs to consider and it is the goal of her research to identify innovative practices and products for small-scale farmers to efficiently produce fish with a built-in resilience to climate change.

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