Campus: San Jose State University -- May 17, 2002

San Jose State University Graduate Student Wins Prestigious Fulbright Award

Brian Williams, SJSU graduate student in environmental studies, has received a Fulbright grant to carry out field work research on the red panda population in Nepal during the 2002-03 academic year.

Williams' research for his master's of science degree thesis will focus on the status of the red panda in Eastern Nepal. Specifically, he will attempt to identify the current distribution of the red panda within the Taplejung and Panchthar districts and predict how current local land-use patterns will affect the population. This study should provide another powerful piece of the red panda puzzle and the critical information needed to fulfill Williams' ultimate goal of creating a Red Panda Conservation Area in Eastern Nepal.

Williams' thesis advisor is environmental studies professor and graduate coordinator Gary Klee, with committee support from Lynn Sikkink, assistant professor of anthropology, and a yet to be named Red Panda/Nepali specialist.

The Fulbright U.S. Student Program awards approximately 1,000 grants annually and currently operates in over 140 countries worldwide. The United States Congress created the Fulbright Program in 1946 to foster mutual understanding among nations through educational and cultural exchange.

Selection for student program awards is based on the student's academic or professional record, language preparation, the feasibility of the proposed study project, and qualifications established by the Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board and the Fulbright Commissions/Foundation.

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