Written By Laura Ramos, Geography and City and Regional Planning media assistant.
Dr. Mohan B. Dangi, Associate Professor of Environmental Systems and Policy in the Geography and City & Regional Planning department at Fresno State, has received the 2018 Fulbright Specialist Award for his environmental research efforts in Nepal.
As a Fulbright Scholar, Dangi is recognized for his extensive environmental and solid waste research more than 7,000 miles away. He has been traveling to Nepal to conduct research since 1998 and this year he will be returning to Nepal to teach solid waste engineering to Master’s and Ph.D. students at Tribhuvan University (TU), he will also train faculty there.
“I feel very honored to receive the Fulbright Specialist Award, I am excited to share my scholarship and higher learning with my esteemed colleagues, solid waste professionals, and hardworking Nepalese students,” said Dangi. “I also hope the learning will be a two-way process, and I can come back from Nepal with many tips and lasting memories for my classroom and larger community here at Fresno State.”
The opportunity to travel will also allow him to conduct training and workshops in waste management at three of the newly formed municipalities across Nepal along with Kathmandu Institute of Applied Sciences.
Dangi is passionate about his work in Nepal because he believes there is a wide range of terrain to study from, and the fact that it is home to the tallest mountains in the world, including Mount Everest.
In addition to his work in Nepal, Dangi has been leading a two and a half-week-long study abroad program during the summer since 2010. The program has allowed students from Fresno State and the University of Wyoming to work side by side with Nepalese students from Tribhuvan University and conduct research about the five key national environmental problems: air, water, soil, solid waste, and forestry.
Students have gained a deeper understanding of environmental issues that have affected Nepal and its inhabitants through the study abroad trip.
“Given the Himalayas are known as roof of the world, what happens to Nepal sooner or later will impact all of us everywhere,” said Dangi.
Dangi has been at Fresno State since fall 2009 and says it has been a great experience, “The best part about being at Fresno State is being able to inspire and work with the next generation of scientists,” said Dangi.
He earned his Ph.D. in solid waste engineering and policy and an M.S. in environmental systems engineering from the Johns Hopkins University. He attained an M.Sc. in environmental science and engineering and a B.S. in chemical engineering with a minor in Asian studies and international politics from the Colorado School of Mines.
The Fulbright Scholar Program was started by Senator J. William Fulbright in the mid-1940s. Since then, the program has recognized intellectual individuals whose research involves environmental issues, food safety, public health, and education. The goal of the Fulbright Program is “to increase mutual understanding and support friendly and peaceful relations with the people of the United States and the people of other countries.”
The College of Social Sciences at Fresno State is proud of the prestigious awards received by its faculty and looks forward to seeing the amazing work Dangi and his team of collaborators-scientists will continue to do.