I am from Venezuela, a beautiful country in the north of South America. Venezuela has incredible marine ecosystems. I recently traveled back there to remind myself why I decided to move to Australia and study at JCU. It was very important for me to keep that in mind. Venezuela’s economy is heavily determined by combustible fossil exploitation. These activities present a high risk to certain aspects of the Venezuelan environment. Marine organisms require clean water to survive, and sometimes the fossil exploitation threatens various wildlife and corals. I came to James Cook University to do a PhD on coral reefs. I am focusing on coral-associated bacteria, but since I live here I have been constantly exposed to diverse research areas such as coral and fish physiology, human impacts on the environment, social development, conservation and management of these ecosystems. During my time in JCU, I have witnessed how different research areas can come together in order to protect the coral reefs. The research and lessons conducted at JCU would greatly benefit the coral reefs in Venezuela.
I am happy to see Australians, more specifically JCU students and staff trying to protect marine ecosystems. It’s nice to see how important it is to preserve the Great Barrier Reef. Environmental issues are everyone’s issues.
Coming to Australia has been a challenge from the first day, and so far it has been one of the greatest challenge in my life. JCU is a leading institution in marine sciences, particularly in coral reefs. Everyday I feel inspired and challenged, I am discovering the best of me. I hope in the future I can use the skills I’ve learned to the help my country, by giving protection to the Venezuelan ecosystems.
Find out more about Marine and Tropical Biology at JCU.