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K. Lisa Yang Wildlife Health Fellows Program

Training the next generation of wildlife conservation and One Health leaders

We are committed to training the next generation of wildlife conservation and One Health leaders with an emphasis on applying sound science to influence real world policy and practice, from local to global, through the creation of more than a dozen postdoctoral fellowships focused on wildlife health / One Health over the next decade (for DVMs or equivalents, PhDs and/or DVM/PhDs). Each fellowship is for a three-year term. Fellows will be part of a vibrant, collaborative, multidisciplinary, and inclusive community of faculty, staff, and students working towards improving the health and well-being of animals, people, and the environment that supports us all.

Postdoctoral Fellows

Fellows will be selected for their commitment to generating solid science and ‘decision maker-friendly’ policy guidance to catalyze sustainable conservation impact through a health lens, with an emphasis on progress through partnerships. We value diverse approaches to addressing integrated human, animal, and environmental health challenges. Potential topics are not predefined. Example themes could include impacts on wildlife health at a range of scales due to: degradation or loss of terrestrial or marine habitats; degradation or depletion of freshwater resources; pollution; climate or other biophysical change; infectious disease; current food systems and/or other issues at the wildlife/domestic animal interface. Fellows may come from a diversity of disciplinary backgrounds, including but not limited to veterinary medicine, epidemiology, ecology, biology, computer/data science, economics and other social/behavioral sciences, nutritional sciences, etc.

During their fellowship, Fellows will gain experience in generating science-based, action-oriented results to solve real-world problems, as well as in grant-writing, and will be well-prepared for wildlife conservation, One Health, and Planetary Health leadership roles. Fellows will also help us expand our impact in different geographic regions and programmatic areas.

We seek applicants interested in engaging at the nexus of rigorous applied research and real impact in the realms of wildlife health and related One Health endeavors. We anticipate awarding up to 6 Fellowships from this call.

The 2024 Request for Proposals is open until August 31, 2024, 11:59PM EDT.

Wildlife Pathology Fellow

The occurrence of unusual or mass mortality events in wildlife is increasing and threatens species conservation and ecosystem integrity. Examples of such events include the sudden mass mortality of approximately 200,000 saiga antelope in Kazakhstan in 2015, attributed to Pasteurella multocida type B triggered by a climatic anomaly. Elsewhere, fatal septicemia associated with an obscure Pasteurella multocida-like bacterium called Bisgaard taxon 45 caused the deaths of 34 elephants in Zimbabwe in 2020 and may explain the deaths of 350 more in neighboring Botswana in the same year. Many more mortality events remain unexplained, including the increase in mortalities affecting greater one-horned rhinoceroses in Chitwan National Park, Nepal, where annual mortalities of between 27 and 36 animals have occurred since 2017.

Many parts of the world lack the surveillance systems required to detect these incidents, as well as the professional and laboratory capacity to investigate their causes. Understanding the etiological factors and conditions responsible for unexplained mortality events is critical to adopting measures that reduce the likelihood of their repetition or the severity of events when they do occur. This is particularly important when wildlife mortality is shaped by human actions, including but not at all limited to climate change, for example through disruption of the physical, biotic (including microbial), and/or chemical environment.

We are seeking a Wildlife Pathology Fellow with specific strengths in international wildlife mortality investigation. 

The 2024 Request for Proposals is open until May 31, 2024, 11:59PM EDT.