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genevieve holdridge, mexico, 2012-2013

Fulbright Year: 2012-2013
Country: Mexico       
Proposal Type: Research
Proposal Title: Late Quaternary Geomorphology in the Mixteca Alta, Oaxaca, Mexico
UGA Graduate Department: Geography
Degree: PhD in Geography
Hometown: Mahopac, NY

Although Genevieve Holdridge had previously spent six months in Mexico doing research in her chosen field of geomorphology (the study of the origin, design and development of landforms), her Fulbright year will find her in back in the southwestern sector of the country, continuing her work in the Pacific Ocean-lined state of Oaxaca.

A Ph.D. student in UGA’s Geography Department, Genevieve plans to observe and record the effects of long-term deforestation on agriculture and will also examine and analyze more recent conservation efforts to combat erosion and gullying. In addition to utilizing her findings for her dissertation, Genevieve plans to work with local scientists and community officials to aid in their efforts to revitalize and manage the degraded landscape.

A seasoned world traveler who has at one time or another called Mexico, Turkey, Romania, Kenya, Corsica, and the United Kingdom home, the New York native said she’s eager to dive in to the culture offered in historically and linguistically rich Oaxaca.

Genevieve said she still has much more to learn about the Oaxacan lifestyle and added that she hopes to establish new connections with the community members she’ll be working with “by making the effort to attend festivals, ask questions, engage in local activities, and just have conversations.”

She also hopes to hone her Spanish-speaking skills and establish a better understanding of how local communities cope with land degradation and discover what community members want to see in the way of changes.

Given her passions for travel and research, Genevieve said she’ll spend time in the next year seeking out the next locale to further complement her work.

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