We’re very excited to welcome the Fourth Batch of students to the NFLC. Please be sure to check out the home page to see the latest reflections from this most recent batch of students.
Meet the six Cornell students who are spending Spring 2019 in Kotagiri:
Lela Robinson is a junior at Cornell University pursuing her undergraduate degree in Urban and Regional Studies in the College of Art, Architecture, and Planning. Lela has developed a strong interest in landscape architecture and hopes to further study the intersection between the two fields. During her studies in India, she hopes to learn from fellow students, faculty, and community members in Kotagiri and the Nilgiris Biosphere Reserve.
Nicole Blumenfeld is a junior majoring in Anthropology and minoring in Law and Society in the College of Arts and Sciences at Cornell University. Born and raised in San Diego, California, Nikki’s time in the NFLC program will be her first international experience, and she is excited for the growth a cross-cultural and global opportunity will afford her. She also looks forward to be able to apply and develop her dynamic, interdisciplinary Arts and Science education during the NFLC program. On campus, Nikki is involved in a film society, a consent education organization, and a social sorority, and some of her other passions revolve around photography, cooking, and the outdoors.
Nnena Ezera is a junior studying International Agriculture and Rural Development in the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences at Cornell University. Nnena is from Sterling, Virginia, just outside of Washington D.C.. Nnena’s family is originally from Nigeria and she has traveled back there several times. At Cornell, Nnena was an RA in Dickson/McLLU and helped sell plants with a club called Hortus Forum. Nnena loves singing along to musicals and playing board games, and really likes to talk about movies and TV shows, including but not limited to: Star Wars, Marvel Comics Universe movies, Avatar: The Last Airbender, Parks & Recreation, and Game of Thrones.
Read Barbee is a junior studying Environmental and Sustainability Sciences in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences at Cornell University. His passion lies in conservation biology,wildlife ecological field research, and the impact of human activity (noise, hunting, habitat fragmentation, etc.) on animal behavior and population dynamics. Ultimately, he hopes to conduct socially-minded, community-based research that can act as a touchstone between human society and the natural world, informing policy and public awareness.
Wyatt Westerkamp is a sophomore at Cornell University studying Environmental and Sustainability Sciences in the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences. He is interested in studying the relationships and interactions between human and natural systems from both an ecological and anthropological perspective. He hopes to conduct research on this topic to answer theoretical questions and to develop management and conservation plans tailored to community needs. Beyond his professional goals, Wyatt has felt a lifelong connection with the natural world. He grew up in Cincinnati, Ohio, where he spent much of his childhood wandering the forests and wetlands surrounding the Ohio River. He enjoys photography, music, writing, and art, and uses these mediums both as a means of expression and as an avenue through which to make sense of himself and the world around him.
Meet the eight Keystone students from Kotagiri:
Monthish K. is from Bikkapathy Mund in Ebbanady, Ooty. He belongs to the Hindu Toda tribe. Monthish has pursued and completed a bachelor’s degree in Electrical and Electronics Engineering. In his leisure time, he likes to keep active by playing football, cricket and table tennis. Monthish is also an expert drummer. Being a part of the NFLC Program, Monthish is interested in learning more about the culture of the tribals and how they live in harmony with the flora and fauna surrounding them.
Nadhiya S. is from Bangalapadigai in the Aracode district and belongs to the Hindu Irular tribe. She has attended school and has completed her tenth grade. Nadhiya likes to play volleyball and chess, and is a graceful folk dancer. Working with the water and wildlife team at Keystone, Nadhiya wants to learn more about the effects of industrial discharge and its interference with the natural water table, and the after effects of consumption of this contaminated water.
Raj Kumar K. is from Pudur village in Kotagiri and belongs to the Hindu Irular tribe. Raj has completed a diploma in Electrical and Electronics Engineering In his leisure time, Raj likes to play volleyball and carom. He is also an enthusiastic folk dancer. Through the NFLC program, he is curious to learn more about the Irular people, the tribe to which he belongs, and have a better understanding of their culture.
Agalya V. is from Kil Pillur in the Pillur Dam area and belongs to the Hindu Irular tribe. She has completed a bachelor’s degree in commerce. Like her fellow students, Agalya also enjoys playing throwball and carrom, and is an expert folk dancer. Being part of the NFLC program, she wants to learn more about the history of the tribal in Kotagiri to have a better understanding of her own culture.
Sangeetha M. is from Mavanatham, Dhimbam and belongs to the Hindu Irular tribe. She has attended school and has completed her twelfth grade. She also enjoys playing throwball, and is an expert folk dancer. Being part of the NFLC program, Sangeetha aspires to become an expert photographer and learn more about birds and animals through photography.
Chitra L. is from Mavanatham, Dhimbam and belongs to the Hindu Irular tribe. She has attended school and has completed her twelfth grade. She also enjoys playing the popular Indian sport, Kabaddi, and is an expert folk dancer. Through the NFLC program, Chitra wants to learn more about the different forms of livelihood of the tribal and how they can be improved to sustain for longer.
Sivammal S. is from Vellarikambai in Mamaram and belongs to the Hindu Kurumba tribe. She has attended school and has completed her tenth grade. She also enjoys playing tennis in her leisure time. Being part of the NFLC program, Sivammal wants to learn more about traditional forms of medication and how they can be preserved.
Dhanalakshmi S. is from Karikaivoor in Aracode district and belongs to the Hindu Irular tribe. She has pursued and completed a diploma in nursing. She also enjoys playing throwball, and is an expert folk dancer. Working with the health and wellness team at Keystone, Dhanalakshmi wants to learn about nutrition, especially for mothers and children.