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Taking advantage of Fulbright opportunity

University of mississippi biology doctoral student tim colston is the recipient of a 2012-13 fulbright scholarship and left this past week for ethiopia to study reptiles.

University of Mississippi biology doctoral student Tim Colston departed last week for Africa.
Colston, a lifelong lover of reptiles, was named as a recipient of a 2012-13 Fulbright Scholarship and will study under the direction of Abebe Getahun of Addis Ababa University in Ethiopia for eight months.
In an interview with Ole Miss News, Colston said that he hopes to promote conserva- tion by making people aware of Ethiopia’s diverse reptile populations and how geology, geography and changing cli- mates have affected these animals.
“The endemic snake community in the highlands versus the other snake community in the lowlands is an aspect that I would not have had in my Ph.D. studies,” Colston told Ole Miss News. “So that’s really going to add a lot to our understanding of community evolution and assembly in
snakes, and reptiles in general.”
Colston said the Fulbright is the first step in what he sees as a long-term collaboration with Ethiopian academics.
“I am going to be spending eight months doing fieldwork and establishing contacts with park rangers and locals in the area that I will use throughout my career,” he said.
Colston had previously studied under the direction of his dissertation adviser Brice Noonan, an assistant professor of biology at The University of Mississippi.
Noonan said he is excited about the attention the biology program has received.
“For our department, this
award puts a public face on the strides the biology department is making in research,” Noonan said. “We are publishing more papers, bringing in more research funding and attracting top-tier graduate students from across the country.”
Noonan said high-profile fellowships, like the Fulbright, enhance the global image and reputation of biology at Ole Miss.
“For our lab, Tim is undertaking some very interesting interdisciplinary work that necessitates capital investment,” Noonan said. “This fellowship ensures the foundation of Tim’s research will not be limited in its scope, broadening the impact of his findings.”