Hi! I’m a PhD candidate working with Dr. Erin Seekamp in equitable and sustainable tourism. For my dissertation I’m conducting mixed-methods research in the Pueblos Mancomunados of southern Mexico to determine tourists’ perceptions of climate change impacts and community adaptive capacity in touristic areas. The results will inform adaptation planning for the ecotourism business owned by the communities, Expediciones Sierra Norte. I’m also a birder and interested in how birding tourism can benefit communities worldwide. You can read more about my research and about me on my personal website here.
Who has been most influential to you?
My whole family has had a large impact on me, but I think particularly aunt and my grandmother did (and still do!). I vividly remember being a small child and going on walks in the woods in rural Alabama with my grandmother and sister. My grandmother was a high school science teacher who also taught my sister and me about nature and instilled a sense of wonder in me. Then we’d go inside and make “artsy” owls out of walnut shells or see a volcano explode using peroxide and baking soda! She gave me my first interest in nature. My aunt traveled the world with the Red Cross from the ’50’s – ’70’s and when I was a child she would share her photos, videos and stories with us. She has always encouraged me to travel and instilled in me a sense of adventure. Lastly, my parents have always supported me and instilled in me the importance of education, which I appreciate very much.
After finishing my doctoral studies I hope to work for a non-profit organization or have a faculty position (either in the SE US or abroad) in which I can help low-resource communities to empower themselves and conserve our natural resources through sustainable tourism enterprises.
Previous Degrees and Where I Received these Degrees
Master of Natural Resource Management (Agroforestry and Non-Timber Forest Products) – North Carolina State University
Bachelor of Arts (Spanish and Latin American Studies) – Auburn University (War Eagle!)
“Words of Wisdom” for Prospective Students
Get used to reading!
My Leisure Interests
I enjoy walking, yoga, gardening, birding, playing with my dogs, canoeing with my husband, and hanging out with friends and family!