Patty Torres, second year ICON & Forestry and Natural Resources PhD student, is a 2023 Ford Foundation Fellow! This award will support her dissertation research in California:
The California north Coast is home to numerous Indigenous Peoples who’ve engaged in traditional ways of life since time immemorial. The connection between self, the land, and non-human beings is integral to the Native American worldview. Yet, while connection to the land is an avenue for spiritual and physical sustenance, it can also expose people to hazards such as ticks and their pathogens. In recent decades, reports of tick-borne disease have doubled nationwide- and disease systems remain poorly understood. Through a collaborative process, a series of studies will take place to elucidate the environmental variables influencing tick populations, pathogen prevalence, and how these factors influence human disease risk in Native American communities in northern California.
Patty will also take part in a fellowship through the Directorate Fellows Program with the US Fish and Wildlife Service this summer.