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    Monday, December 18, 2017-7:43:29A.M.

     

     

     

     

     

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KHS student presents research work at Guam conference

KAGMAN High School student Alyssa Cepeda presented her research findings at the first annual Marianas Terrestrial Conservation Conference held at Guam Community College on Nov. 17-18.

Cepeda has looked into the role of purple hermit crabs — Coenobita brevimanus — as forest frugivores as part of her participation in the Short-Term Experience for Underrepresented Persons or STEP-UP program.

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Kagman High School student Alyssa Cepeda presented her research work at the first annual Marianas Terrestrial Conservation Conference at Guam Community College.  Contributed photo

Cepeda was the only high school student among the 17 presenters at the Guam event, according to STEP-UP local coordinator Anette Pladevega.

The conference featured research work on bird conservation, non-avian animal conservation, plant conservation, community and watershed ecology, invasive animal threats, invasive plant and fungal threats, and soil and water conservation on Guam and the CNMI.

The organizing committee included Haldre Rogers and Ann Marie Gawel, Iowa State University & the Ecology of Bird Loss Project; Joni Kerr, Guam Community College; Lainie Berry, CNMI Department of Lands & Natural Resources; Jen Horeg, Andersen Air Force Base, Guam; Tammy Mildenstein, Cornell College; Jill Liske-Clark, CNMI Division of Fish and Wildlife; and Diane Vice, Guam Department of Aquatic and Wildlife Resources.

With funding from the STEP-UP Program and in partnership with the Public School System, Cepeda conducted her research under the mentorship of Dr. Haldre Rogers as part of the Ecology of Bird Loss Program.

Asked about her experience at the Marianas Terrestrial Conference, Cepeda said it was a great opportunity to hear from scientists and biologists in the CNMI and Guam.

“As a student from Kagman High School, I felt honored to share my own presentation. I am thankful for all that [the scientists] do for our islands, and I hope one day I can do the same,” she added.