Conservation Genetics Research Fellowship for Development of Long-term Genetics Study of Sunda Clouded Leopard (Neofelis Diardi) and Sympatric Carnivores

Institution: Brown University, USA

Born and bred in an urban area in Selangor, Chrishen Gomez found his most uncommon love for the natural world, first, during his family trips to the majestic islands of Malaysia. The fan to this flame, was undoubtedly, the 4 years spent in Sarawak whilst attaining his undergraduate degree in Resource Biotechnology. There he was exposed to the pristine Bornean forests, home to the most biodiverse guild of flora and fauna.

This intense experience of the natural world cultivated a strong conviction to not only protect it, but to do so by deepening our understanding of it through robust scientific method. Since then, conservation and science have taken centre-stage in all his conversations and endeavours.  The marriage of these two passions has found its home in his current profession as a wildlife biologist. Chrishen manages the Bornean Carnivore Programme, which comprises of a team of 6 researchers devoted to studying the entire Bornean mammalian carnivore guild. He now calls Tawau Hills Park in Sabah, his home.

Under the guidance of Dr. Andrew Hearn, Chrishen is developing the first genetic based research project on the Sunda clouded leopard and its sympatric carnivores. This project will make up the core of his application to begin a PhD programme at Oxford University in 2020, under the Wildlife Research and Conservation unit. Chrishen is also a strong advocate of youth development and social action, which bloomed during his 2-year stint as Vice president of AIESEC in Kuching where he was involved in developing over 5 long-term social projects for leadership development which impacted over 100 leaders across 10 countries. Chrishen strongly believes that it is the responsibility and mission of every young person to tackle the Earths most pressing issues head-on. He hopes to inspire others to make bold decisions and stand-up for issues that matter.
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