UMass Boston welcomed Dr. Beth Kaplin, an expert in science, development, and economic transformation. Dr. Kaplin shared her expertise in ecology, conservation biology, and international environmental commitments. As a scholar from the University of Rwanda, Dr. Kaplin’s creativity and new appointment as a Research Professor in UMass Boston’s School for the Environment adds momentum to the collaboration jump-started by the National Science Foundation IGERT trip to Rwanda in March 2018. In May 2018, a visit from Phil Cotton, the Vice Chancellor of the University of Rwanda, to the “Land of a Thousand Ideas Symposium” underscored the importance of the relationships built on this trip. Additionally, a rich variety of presentations revealed the sustained impacts on the research topics and long-term aspirations of students from UMass Boston and Antioch University New England, where Dr. Kaplin also taught.
Recognized by colleagues for scientific and policy skills, such as natural resource management, sustainability, and sustainable development. Dr. Kaplin’s August 8th lecture, “What Role for Higher Education in Rwanda’s Economic Transformation Targets & SDGs” drew the interest of students, academic leadership, and professors from a multitude of departments, from the natural to the social sciences. Dr. Kaplin’s current work includes a knowledge management consortium which supports herbarium digitization, freshwater biodiversity database, and traditional knowledge documentation in support of the Nagoya protocol.