Our testimonials: Evan

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Our testimonials: Evan


Meet our testimonials

Meet Evan from United States of America

Student of Land Environment Resource and Health/Forest Science


"You will encounter people with diverse backgrounds and unique experiences. Lean into their knowledge and support whenever you can, and take this opportunity to grow yourself both personally and professionally" 


Meet Evan

About myself 

Hello, my name is Evan, and I am a Forest Scientist from the United States. I grew up playing in the Wilderness of California, where I developed a deep passion for nature. As an undergraduate student, I began to hone my skills and knowledge as an environmentalist. It was during this time that I became interested in the field of Forestry and Forest Ecology while studying some of the oldest and largest old-growth redwood trees along the California coast and mountains. Upon graduation, I moved to Senegal, West Africa, where I served as a forestry and environmental specialist, helping small communities to manage their local ecosystems. It was here that I realized just how important forests are to the entire planetary ecosystem and decided to commit myself to helping to protect, manage, and restore the earth's forest ecosystems. After spending several years working as a forest technician in the California mountains, I resolved to pursue my master's in Forest Science so that I could broaden my knowledge of global forestry and better contribute to a healthier and more sustainable world. I chose to attend the University of Padova because I knew it would offer me a valuable education in Forest Science that also incorporated the international perspectives that I knew would lead me to become the best international forestry specialist that I could be. While attending the University in Padova, I was also fortunate to be able to attend a mobility program in British Columbia, where I gained an even greater depth of environmental knowledge than what I could have obtained in Italy alone. To this day, I am deeply passionate about forestry and the outdoors and enjoy spending my free time playing in the mountains in Italy, California, and around the world.

    What did you like most about the Forest Science degree programme? Why would you suggest it to other students?    

What I Iiked most about the Forest Science program at the University of Padova was, by far, the field trips. Time in the field is an important part of the program here and really allowed me to explore the various forest ecosystems in Italy. The country has around 11 million hectares of forest cover, which is about one-third of the country's total area. Furthermore, it has multiple forest types and tree species, some of which I had never seen before. Being able to spend a significant amount of time exploring these forests and learning about their similarities and unique differences helped to give me the broader forestry perspectives that I was looking for. I would absolutely suggest that any student take advantage of these field excursions and spend as much in the woods and mountains around Padova as they possibly can. It is truly a unique experience that makes for the best education possible.

    What did you like most about your time at UNIPD?    

UniPd is a very international school, and as a result, I was able to meet people from all over the world. Learning about them, their countries, and the different forestry and environmental issues was definitely one of the most rewarding experiences I have had in my career. Furthermore, the university offers a significant work-life balance, which gave me ample time to explore Italy while not in class. Exploring the country with my new friends and practicing all that we learned in class has been a great experience that I will remember for the rest of my life.

    What advice would you give to students wishing to study abroad?    

Studying in Italy is a very exciting and rewarding process. That being said, it certainly is not easy. Be prepared for long nights studying and for challenging coursework. My advice would be never to take yourself too seriously while working through this program. You will encounter people with diverse backgrounds and unique experiences. Lean into their knowledge and support whenever you can, and take this opportunity to grow yourself both personally and professionally.

    What funny things have you experienced since being here? (this can include experiences outside the city e.g. travel to the rest of the Italy)    

I was really able to use this opportunity to explore Italy in a way that most Americans never do. Living here gave me the opportunity to learn Italian and travel the country as if I was a local. This meant a lot of spontaneous trips to other cities and countries that I otherwise would not have had the opportunity to see. At least once a month, I was able to go somewhere I had never been before, and this opened the door to some very interesting experiences. From taking the night bus to Rome for the New Year to accidentally stumbling across nude beaches in Sicily, I can safely say that I've been able to see and do things in Italy that I could not have imagined.

    What do you like most about the City of Padova and why? How do you spend your spare time there?    

There are plenty of good things I could say about living in Padova. For starters, it is a very student-centered city. Of the 200,000 people that live here, roughly 60,000 are students. This means you will always be able to meet new people and make new friends. There are countless bars and pubs where you can get aperitivo with friends after class and multiple clubs where you can dance the night away if that is more your style. For people who prefer not to drink, Padova has plenty of museums, gardens, and parks to relax in. There are also multiple opportunities for sports and recreation, including football fields, climbing gyms, skate parks, ice skating rings, and more. There is also ample access to the mountains for people like me who like hiking, biking, and climbing in the outdoors. Furthermore, Padova is a well-located city, so It is easy to hop on a train and go anywhere whenever you feel like getting out of the city.

    What are some things people might not know about studying in Italy?    

Studying in Italy was significantly different than in the USA. I found that unlike in the States, which tends to focus heavily on assignments and projects, the Italian system focuses more on lectures and practical learning. This meant that I had to develop new ways to study and test my knowledge outside of class without the tedium of endless essays. This was definitely an adjustment, as it took significantly more self-organization and drive. Furthermore, to really test the knowledge of their students, Italian universities feature an oral exam process. This means that the students must be able to have in-depth discussions about the topics they have learned and not simply regurgitate textbook information. This approach requires the students to really have a thorough and conversational understanding of the topics that they study. In the end, I feel that I learned more from this method of study than from the approach I had been exposed to in the past, and has allowed me to retain even more knowledge.

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