Aubrey Mathews

Country: United States of America
Sector: Civil Engineering
Subject of study: Conservation Science and Policy
Year of graduation: 2022

Current Employer/Organisation Name


Tell us about your background and why you chose to go to university

I grew up in Minnesota (USA) and completed my undergraduate degree at Iowa State University in Environmental Science and Environmental Studies. I have always been interested in nature and conservation efforts with climate change became my interest growing up. My high school science courses and outside extracurriculars centered around science and I my desire to learn more kept growing. I chose to pursue a degree in understanding the environment as a whole better so I could help protect and preserve it. After undergrad, I decided to apply for the Master’s program at Exeter because of my interest in how science and policy work together to implement effective solutions in conservation and climate change mitigation. This masters was a unique program unlike anything offered in the US or elsewhere. I wanted to gain international policy experience and push myself individually to live in a new country. 

How did being awarded the Global Excellence scholarship make you feel?

I was elated to receive the scholarship because it made my education feel so much more accessible. The cost of university in the US especially is very high and working to make sure the degree I wanted was affordable was a stress. 

How did winning a Global Excellence scholarship help you with your studies?

The scholarship gave me the opportunity to reduce my financial stress and be able to enjoy my time in the UK and focus on my education. 

Tell us about your experiences in Exeter – living in the city, joining societies, your favourite part of your studies:

I did not live in Exeter, I was at the Penryn campus. It was absolutely amazing to live in Cornwall, it was such a beautiful place to be. I enjoyed meeting new people, going to the beach and surfing. My dissertation project was my highlight and the field trip to Scotland was another. 

How have your studies at Exeter helped you on your career journey?

With my Masters, I felt so confident applying to jobs after graduation. The program boosted my confidence and my abilities as a scientist. With my research project I conducted, I was able to gain leadership experience and coordination skills that apply to the role I hold today. 

What are your plans for the future?

 I plan to continue working in biological consulting and working up to project management and technical expert level here in California. However, if there is ever an opportunity to return to the UK or EU for work, I will happily take it because of my wonderful experience at the university. 


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