Meet Our Students - Yosef Manik
What year and semester did you begin EES graduate studies?
I started a Fulbright Fellow in the School of Forest Resources in Fall 2010 and in Summer 2012 I switched to Ecology and Environmental Science (EES).
What degree are you pursuing?
Who is your academic advisor?
Dr. Jessica Leahy
What prior degrees do you have?
My previous degree is M.Sc in Sustainable Processing from Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, Germany.
Why did you choose to attend grad school at UMaine? Why did you choose EES?
I am from Jakarta, Indonesia, one of the most populated cities in the world. The primary reason I chose UMaine is that Maine is well-known for its peaceful atmosphere, beautiful land, the tranquility of the rivers and streams and the smell of the pine in the woods. I switched to EES because it provides an integrated multi-disciplinary approach to the analysis and resolution of ecological and environmental problems.
Briefly describe the research project you are working on.
My Ph.D. project is “Life Cycle Sustainability Assessment of Palm Oil Biodiesel”. Sustainability science is an emerging and hot research field which seeks solutions in the nexus between social and economic needs of human beings and the thermodynamic constraint of the biosphere. In my project, I am developing a decision support system that satisfies the current need for renewable energy sources without sacrificing the ecological goods services as well as the ability of future generations to meet their needs.
What has been your favorite class at UMaine so far? What has been your most rewarding research experience and why?
My favorite class so far has been “Industrial Ecology and Life Cycle Assessment” with Dr. Anthony Halog, where I learned about the methodology to assess environmental impacts associated with all the stages of a product’s life– from-cradle-to-grave–useful to support various levels of environmental policy making. I also conducted field research to collect the relevant data and information related to the practices of palm oil biodiesel on an industrial scale in Indonesia, the world’s largest producer of palm oil.
What advice do you have for prospective graduate students?
Prospective graduate students in EES should know the decision to pursue a Ph.D. is a big commitment and not something that should be undertaken lightly. Think about why you want to do this, and whether graduate school is really the way to go. If, after all of this, you are interested in studying EES at UMaine, I will be more than happy to share my experience with you.