Abstract # 6207 Event # 234:

Scheduled for Saturday, June 20, 2015 10:54 AM-11:06 AM: (Cascade F) Oral Presentation


HOW THE INDONESIAN FIELD STUDY PROGRAM (IFSP) CHANGED MY LIFE

J. A. McNulty
The University of Texas at Austin, Office of Research Support, P.O. Box 7426, Austin, TX 78704, USA
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     During my freshman year at the University of Washington in 1999, as a lark, I applied to study long-tailed macaques (Macaca fascicularis) at the International Field Study Program (IFSP) held on the remote Tinjil Island of the southwest coast of Java, Indonesia. One component of IFSP was an intensive three-week field course that introduced participants to primate diversity, behavior, ecology, and conservation. The second component required participants to conduct our own unique research projects. Unfortunately, my project was a flop. In the spring of my junior year in 2002, I returned to Tinjil Island for summer-long trip where I would conduct my senior honors projected guided by my undergraduate mentor, Dr. Randy Kyes. I arrived back at Tinjil Island confidant that I had learned from the mistakes of my previous fieldwork. Although the experience had its ups and downs, I successfully completed my investigation of the habitat structure and feeding ecology of the macaque population. The experience on Tinjil Island was life changing. I went from hopes of a business degree to pursuing a career in laboratory animal science. Furthermore, my experiences in Indonesia introduced to me—and instilled in me—a love of learning other cultures and traveling around the world.