NJSWEP was pleased to award scholarships to five impressive students in 2020. 

Emily Cruz (2020 Undergraduate Winner) is currently a senior at Princeton University pursuing a degree in Civil and Environmental Engineering with certificates in Environmental Studies, and Latin American Studies. Her previous experience has geared towards improving the environment in various sectors such as agriculture, coastal development, and through education, with her ultimate goal being to work in environmental restoration. She is extremely interested in finding ways to quantify qualitative actions humans take to restore the environment, and creating an economic framework that accounts for and prioritizes sustainability. After graduating, Emily will be working for BCG in Washington D.C. with hopes to work in projects primarily in the Climate and Sustainability Practice.

Danielle Dyson (2020 Undergraduate Winner) is graduating from Stockton University this year with a B.S. in Marine Science and a B.S. in Environmental Science. As she is graduating, she is looking to expand her research area as she continues to research important questions about the Jersey Shore that she grew up on. This scholarship opportunity has helped her to work towards my dream. College was a financial burden for her family as she lost her father right before starting University, and it was through the generosity of people at NJSWEP all that she was able to get her degrees. 

Morgan Mark (2020 Undergraduate Winner) received her B.S. in Bioenvironmental Engineering from Rutgers University this past May and was recently accepted into Rutgers' Graduate Program in Ecology and Evolution under the advisorship of Dr. Brooke Maslo. She will research COVID-19 in wildlife populations and examine the potential for spillover back to human populations. Her other research interests include wildlife diseases, snakes, birds, and botany, and she enjoys being outdoors, birding, and nature journaling.

Sarah Borsetti (2020 Graduate Winner) is a Post-Doctoral Researcher working at the Rutgers Haskin Shellfish Research Lab to answer questions about the interactions among commercial shellfish fisheries, wind energy, and changing climate conditions. In March 2021, Borsetti received her PhD from Rutgers University, where she studied the life-history traits of an unfished gastropod along the warming U.S. continental shelf. This project provided critical information that has allowed the commercial fishing industry to be better informed about increasing investment in this fishery. In addition to the importance of this information in developing a fisheries management plan, these data from an unfished population can serve as a model to understand how other heavily exploited populations are impacted by fishing and climate.

Sydonia Manibusan (2020 Graduate Winner) is completing her Ph.D. in Environmental Science with a concentration in Human Exposure Assessment at Rutgers – New Brunswick. Sydonia obtained her B.A. in Biology and M.S. in Environmental Science at the University of Guam. Sydonia was a 2020-2021 Eagleton Fellow and completed an internship with the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) in the Office of Watershed and Land Management and is a 2022 Presidential Management Fellowship Finalist. She will be starting her postdoctoral research this summer at Georgia State University. Sydonia’s current research focuses on sampling of bioaerosols, the microbiological particles suspended in the air which can cause negative health effects. Her other graduate research includes consumer-grade particulate monitors in residential settings. Sydonia’s prior research included erosion and sedimentation monitoring in the Piti-Asan Watershed in Guam and the Talakhaya Watershed in Rota, MP, as part of a multi-agency environmental restoration project. Through the Talakhaya project and work with the Guam Nature Alliance she has been involved with various environmental outreach and education efforts. Her interests include environmental air and water pollution and their potential health and welfare impacts on communities.

NJSWEP congratulates our 2020 Scholarship recipients and looks forward to their participation in our organization and their contributions to the environmental field.  We encourage any student interested in the Scholarship Program to apply for future awards.

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