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Marine Science alumna to discuss dugong research

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Date: Wednesday, October 29, 2014
Contact: Alyson Kakugawa-Leong, (808) 932-7669

For Immediate Release

The Marine Science Department at the University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo will present a talk by 2003 graduate Dr. Louisa Ponnampalam on Monday, November 17 at 1 p.m. in Marine Science Building, Room 101. The event is free and open to the public.

Ponnampalam will discuss her journey from humble beginnings as a marine science major to her current position as a full-fledged cetacean and dugong researcher in her home country of Malaysia and founder of her own conservation NGO. The dugong is listed as vulnerable by the International Union of Conservation of Nature Red List of Threatened Species. Her talk will cover a wide range of topics, including currently known facts about dugongs and environmental issues in Johor, their conservation needs and the latest efforts to improve protections for the species, and their sea grass habitats.

Ponnampalam recently became the first Malaysian to receive the prestigious PEW Fellowship in Marine Conservation. Ponnampalam’s professional achievements were also recognized by Malaysia’s Prime Minister, who presented her with the 2014 National Youth Premier Award.

For more information, contact Steve Colbert at 932-7596 or

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