Harrison Tighiri - October 2018
Environmental Sciences (PhD)

Hello Harrison, can you please tell us about yourself briefly.
I am a Ph.D Environmental Sciences Candidate, hails from Nigeria and I did my M.Sc. in Environmental Sciences as well in Cyprus International Univeristy.

You won the scholarship program which hold in America. How did you decide to apply? Please tell us about your research through the program.
I got to hear about the program (Summer Institute on Sustainability and Energy- University of Illinois Chicago (UIC)) from google search engine and spoke to my supervisor (Assoc. Prof. Dr. Emrah Ahmet Erkurt) about it. As always he gave his moral support for me to apply for the program and also gave me a strong recommendation letter to back my application up. Also, I got a solid recommendation letter from my lecturer (Assoc. Prof. Dr. Hatice Ataceg Erkurt).
The program lasted for 20 days and was held in University of Illinois Chicago (UIC) with full sponsorship. Within the period of the program we were subjected to undergo a community based sustainable environment and energy research to support the development of the community (North Lawndale Chicago, IL, USA).
My team focused on sustainable research on waste to wealth creation, we did an extensive study on generation of food from hydoponis to aquaponis system, while using composting method of waste treatment to create rich soil for the hydroponis system, whereby recycling the water from the aquaponis system back to the hydroponis. Hence the whole system was automatically regulated and there was minimal or no waste generation.  

How do you feel about becoming the third with your group out of hundreds of participants?
Well I am overwhelmed with joy, even though we didnt come out as the best but our research idea and study was appreciated by the community and was accepted for implementation. So that, is the most satisfying achievement so far derived from.

What is the greatest advantage you feel you gained throughout the program? What does it bring to your research or professional career?
The program so far gave me more insight on my field of study and exposed me to the current trend of research in environment, energy and economics.
Currently I am a fellow with the Institute and that alone is a boost to my career and professional life. For my research i currently have alot of collaborators including the director (George Crabtree) of Joint Center for Energy Storage Research (JCESR) in Argonne National Laboratory who is ready to give me recommendation to undergo research concerning my research in the Argonne National Laboratory.

What are your plans and expectations for the future?
I would love to be a University Professor someday and impact my students with what I have learnt and still learning. Aside that, I might step out of my role as a university lecturer at some point in my career, although I'm not sure when and where. I could see myself working as an environmental and energy consultant for NGOs, private companies and government parastatals.

Created On: June 27, 2019