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This year, the committee has selected Selena Gerace as the 2016-17 Andrew and Connie Vanvig Graduate Fellow.
Selena was born and raised in Mt. Shasta, CA. She earned a BA in Politics from Whitman College. After graduating she lived for a short time in Sierra Leone working for a women’s health NGO before working in the hospitality and wine industries in the Pacific Northwest.
Since joining our MS program, she has excelled in the classroom – maintaining a perfect 4.0 GPA – as a research and teaching assistant, and as a department citizen. In her first year with us, Selena has worked on multiple research projects allowing her to exhibit a diverse array of skills. She has conducted interviews with WY beekeepers for a project exploring US demand for honeybees, and with a diverse group of stakeholders concerned about wilderness study areas near Jackson Hole. She has demonstrated communication and inter-personal skills beyond her years. Selena has also been an exceptional teaching assistant, and will take full responsibility for teaching AGEC 2020-Farm and Ranch Business Management this fall.
Selena's nomination letters described her in strings of superlatives: "most well-rounded," "unmatched motivation," “perfect (fellowship) candidate,” "all-around star that has earned our recognition."
For her thesis, under the supervision of Dr. Chian Jones-Ritten and Dr. Chris Bastian, Selena is studying how gender impacts market outcomes for agricultural producers.
After graduating, Selena plans to pursue her interests in facilitation and collaborative problem solving of environmental and natural resource issues in an academic or journalism setting. She also plans to walk El Camino de Santiago, learn to make an excellent loaf of sourdough bread, and read all the unread novels that are piling up in her apartment.