OFID 2018 Scholar Amayaa Wijesinghe from Sri Lanka
“Two roads diverged in a wood, and I – I took the one less traveled by, and that has made all the difference.” This Robert Frost quote perfectly describes me and my career pursuits.
I grew up on the small island of Sri Lanka, which features an abundance of natural beauty and resources. Growing up surrounded by nature, I was driven to explore the natural world around me and to better appreciate its beauty and complexity. With this curiosity, I decided to pursue a career in Environmental Sciences and Biodiversity Conservation.
Through my studies at the University of Colombo in Sri Lanka, I gained an understanding of what I see as the greatest challenge society faces today: a lack of understanding about our impact on Earth. I believe that we need to critically evaluate our lifestyles and make changes to ensure we are living sustainably with our environments. With the help of the OFID Scholarship, I hope to further my education as well as work toward my goal of integrating environmental concerns into national policy.
Innovation excites me, especially solutions that are created by the youth of the world. In order for the younger generation to find these solutions, however, they must never be afraid to “take the road less traveled” simply because no one else has attempted to do so. We need to go against the norm if we are ever to make the changes that we want to see in reality. In doing so, I strongly believe that the younger generation can contribute to the creativity, willingness and consciousness needed to make a difference.”