Jessica Mathon, MS

Jessica Mathon, MS studentEmail Jessica

Research Interests

My interest is in large carnivore conservation and human/wildlife conflict in Africa. Many large carnivores are threatened because of, although not limited to, habitat fragmentation and direct persecution by humans. As humans are often the direct cause for their declines, community outreach efforts are a vital part to their long-term survival. There are many community outreach programs targeting conservation, but do conservation messages get to communities through these types of programs, and do they effect change? My thesis focuses on a non-profit organization in Zimbabwe, Painted Dog Conservation, and how its community outreach programs are targeting conservation of the endangered painted hunting dog, while attempting to improve the education and economic opportunities for the surrounding communities.


Relevant Professional Experience

Painted Dog Conservation
Dete, Zimbabwe. Summer 2004. Assistant to the director of Iganyana Arts and Crafts Center, a conservation community outreach project.

Painted Dog Conservation volunteer
Dete, Zimbabwe. July 2000

Information Coordinator
Center for Tropical Ecology and Conservation. Fall 2003

Symposium Volunteer
Conservation without Borders: The impact of conservation on human communities. 2004

Martial Arts teaching/training exchange
Teaching and training with a local martial arts group in Dete, Zimbabwe.


Education

Antioch University New England
2007

Johnson State College
External Degree Program. BS in General Studies, with a focus in Biology and African Studies. Honors award.

Field studies course
Tropical Ecology & Conservation Biology, Costa Rica. Spring 2004.

Independent field study course
Galapagos Islands: The human impact. Galapagos Islands, Ecuador. Spring 1999.


Personal Accomplishments and Interests

Tae Kwon Do
I earned my black belt in 2000 and continue to take great joy in training when I can and helping others, especially children and women, to gain strength and self confidence through martial arts. Facilitating cultural exchanges between individual martial artists and schools here and abroad is something I am working on, to share knowledge and experience, and exchange much needed equipment.

Family
I share my life and dreams with my two children.

Farming
I spent many years farming and raising most of our food sustainably and organically. I take great pride in that, and love to share ideas, problems, questions, thoughts, and solutions with others. Connecting farmers, here and abroad, is something I hope to do more of in the future.