Priya

Host – Bantry Marine Research Station, Ireland (registered at University College Dublin)

The project will involve investigating a novel seaweed-ensiling process as an alternative to drying to preserve seaweeds nutritional and monetary value. The study will also investigate the waste effluent produced by the silage. The successful candidate will also be tasked with implementing seaweed cultivation optimisation strategies with the aim of maximising seaweed protein and/or mannitol content.

The candidate will be based in Bantry Marine Research Station, in west Cork, Ireland and will be registered University College Dublin (UCD). The candidate will work under the supervision of Dr Julie Maguire (BMRS) with inputs from Prof. Kevin McDonnell (UCD).

Priya grew up on the small twin island state of Trinidad and Tobago in the West Indies. Here she pursued a BSc. and MSc. while teaching ballet and competing professionally in ballroom and Latin dancing. Her research mapped and monitored Sargassum spp. blooms in the Eastern Caribbean and off the south American coast using NASA’s Landsat 8 and ESA’s Sentinel 2A satellites.

Post-graduation she worked at a local laboratory doing marine macro-benthic taxonomic identification before moving to the United Arab Emirates. Here she conducted field studies expeditions with schools when Operation Wallacea presented an opportunity for summer research. Priya was able to lecturer while identifying and cataloguing the macro-benthic freshwater organisms on the Caribbean island of Dominica. This expedition reignited a desire for higher level research and scholarship.

Now an Early Stage Researcher for AgRefine, based at the Bantry Marine Research Station Limited, Ms. Pollard hopes to continue her journey developing skills to contribute towards a sustainable future and is grateful for the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the Marie Skłodowska-Curie grant agreement No 860477.

Education:
MSc. Integrated Coastal and Ocean Management, University f Trinidad and Tobago (2017).
BSc. Biology (Major) Environmental Biology (Minor), University of the West Indies (2015).
Associate Degree Imperial Classical Ballet, Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing (2018).

Interests
Macro-algae, Geoinformatics (GIS), Benthic taxonomy, Environmental Sustainability

GIS
A picture is worth 1000 words.

Fun Fact: Priya did ballet for 23 years and has broken every toe at least twice.

Favourite Quote: “It’s the job that’s never started as takes longest to finish.”― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings