Great Conversations is a unique live event benefiting the Honors College at the University of North Texas. This engaging program brings together individuals of accomplishment and skill to facilitate conversations on important, diverse, and stimulating topics, ranging from the intellectual to the lighthearted over dinner. The event is being held in the DATCU VIP Clubroom Tuesday, February 27, 2024, Doors will open at 6:00pm. Dinner and conversation to begin at 7:00pm. This year Dr. Andrew Gregory from the UNT Department of Biological Sciences will be featured as a guest at the event:
There and Back Again: An Ecologist's Tale of Field Work Abroad
Ecology is defined as the study of organisms to each other and their physical environments. Historically, that meant that ecologists would go away to some remote place free of human influences to study organisms in their more or less pristine state. More recently however, that tendency has changed to recognize that ecology is the study of dynamic reciprocal interactions among humans, the physical world, and the other biological entities inhabiting space with us. Over the past two decades I have had the opportunity to travel to more than 40 countries to study dynamic relationships among wildlife and humans. Along the way I have had the opportunity to become immersed innumerous different cultural and geopolitical aspects of the human experience on this planet. From being taken hostage in Yemen, meeting with FARC resistance fighters in Colombia, trekking through the rain forests of Nigeria, signing the EU Green belt Accord in Germany, being stalked by a leopard in the NW Ghats of India, and sharing a coke with a Masai tracker in the Mara reserve of Kenya, who knows where our discussion will take us. Along the way we will share some laughs and discuss some of the lessons learned in a lifetime of studying ecology abroad.
Andrew Gregory was raised in a rural community in southeastern Minnesota, which forms the basis of his sense of place and greatly influences his research interests. As an assistant professor of spatial ecology and wildlife conservation in the Department of Biological Sciences at UNT, he specializes in studying dynamic interactions between humans and wildlife. He is particularly interested in how wild plants and animals are finding ways to thrive amidst a sea of anthropogenic influences. For his research he uses a variety of applied spatial models and conservation genetics tools. Recently, he has worked with Audubon Texas to investigate the efficacy of the Audubon Conservation Ranching program to protect birds in Texas, the US Fish and Wildlife Service to investigate the impacts of the border wall on state sensitive wildlife, and the City of Denton to create the recent Denton City Corridors plan. He looks forward to an invigorating and lively discussion.
Tickets are still available and can be purchased here.
Find more information about Great Conversations here.