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Science Education Program

Science Education Gorongosa

The Gorongosa Biodiversity Science Education Program is a recent initiative of the E.O. Wilson Biodiversity Laboratory at Gorongosa National Park. Our objective is to guide the next generation of Mozambican university students, biologists and conservation leaders in biodiversity research and wildlife preservation through hands on capacity building workshops, research fellowships and higher education opportunities. 

The Gorongosa Biodiversity Science Education Program (BioEd) is a Gorongosa Restoration Project (GRP) initiative, supported by the Howard Hughes Medical Institute for Science Education (HHMI Science Education). BioEd seeks to develop individual Mozambican students, researchers, university faculty and technicians in ecological research and monitoring, conservation biology, sustainable development, adaptive management, and related skills. Through outreach to university faculty, development of education materials and support for replication of conservation biology workshops, BioEd seeks to improve the capacity of educational institutions in Mozambique to train conservation biologists and have a long lasting impact on Mozambique’s protected areas.

 

The BioEd program actively seeks out creative ways to increase the capacity of higher learning institutions and create opportunities to promote Gorongosa’s restoration and conservation model throughout Mozambique. Through the expanded educational activities, BioEd is generating replicators: individuals or institutions, who can bring the BioEd methods and information to a wider audience. The long term impacts are greater understanding of conservation biology among Mozambican scientists and conservationists, ultimately helping protected areas throughout Mozambique make more informed management decisions based on sound scientific principles.    

 

 

Workshops and Advanced training 

Our workshops cover a range of topics. We teach methods for conservation science and provide hands on training in biological documentation with topics such as bioinformatics and statistics. Other advanced courses focus on individual groups of organisms such as mammology, ornithology, botany and entomology. At the Wilson lab we also explore topics in plant and animal interactions, phylogenetics and systematics and plant and animal interactions. 

The workshop experience is unique in Mozambique because of an integrated approach linking theory and practical experience in the field. Lectures and lab work are conducted at the E.O. Wilson Biodiversity Laboratory located at the heart of Gorongosa National Park. The facilities include a lecture hall, synoptic, zoological and botanical collections, laboratories allowing for DNA preservation, extraction and amplification, and a chemical laboratory. 

Students have the opportunity to conduct field work in the natural and untouched environment in the interior of Gorongosa National Park. Workshop sizes are kept small to ensure students receive one-on-one mentoring from instructors. They are immersed in a practical research environment; leaving them ready to pursue independent research in biodiversity and advance in their careers in conservation.

Biodiversity Research Fellowships and Internships
The internship and fellowship initiative was established as a complement to the teaching biodiversity survey. The objective being to continue to develop . The internship and fellowship initiative was established as a complement to the teaching biodiversity survey. The objective being to continue to develop individual Mozambicans in conservation biology through direct mentoring from experts. In addition to skills training, the BioEd program is collaborating with outside institutions to help provide opportunities for participants after their time at the Park. The BioEd program also leverages fellowship and internship research to further the understanding of biodiversity at Gorongosa. For more information, please contact:   science@gorongosa.net
 
 
 
Youth Internships
 
Our youth interns are ambitious Mozambicans selected for their passion for animals and the outdoors. They participate in ongoing research projects at the E.O. Wilson Biodiversity Laboratory with international scientists and receive peer-to-peer mentoring from our research fellows. To give back to their communities, these interns help to organize and facilitate short courses in conservation and biology; bringing the message of Gorongosa’s restoration to secondary school students from the parks buffer zone. 
 
Calendar of Events 
March 14th  – 19th Phylogenetics and Systematics   
March 20th – 25th Plant and Animal Interactions  
July 1st – July 14th General Conservation Biology  
July 15th – July 22nd Mammology  
September 26th – October 1st Bioinformatics  
October 3rd – 9th Entomology  
November 20th - December 10th Teaching Biodiversity Survey  
Young Mozambican Research Grants
 
The E.O. Wilson Biodiversity Laboratory is offering short term research funding for well developed proposal from Mozambican students and working scientists to enrich the understanding of biodiversity and ecological processes at Gorongosa National Park. For more information please contact:   
 
Past Workshops 
2014: African Entomology
2015: Bioinformatics; African Herpetology; Teaching Biodiversity Survey