May 15, 2013
Earth and Environmental Sciences (EES) Minor (and UM triple major!) Stephanie Chen has been awarded a prestigious Fulbright Fellowship to quantify the nutritional requirements and feeding habits of the golden snub-nosed monkey, an endangered primate native to the mountain forests of central China. Stephanie has been a part of EES for her whole UM career, starting with a first year UROP project that was jointly supervised by Selena Smith and Nathan Sheldon. Her research in the department resulted in a first-authored paper about using ginger phytoliths to reconstruct past tropical vegetation that was published earlier this year (Chen and Smith, 2013, Palaeo-3) and will lead to second first-authored paper (Chen et al.) about the spread of grassland ecosystems in the Miocene that will be submitted before she departs for China. Stephanie considered a variety of offers for graduate school, before settling on a statistics PhD at North Carolina State University – a program that she’ll now defer as she heads to China on her Fulbright for 2013-2014!