The Power(s) of place

November 16, 2023

Costa Rica is a second home for Jennifer Powers. The plant and microbial biology professor’s ties to the country go back three decades starting when she was a graduate student taking field courses. Now a recognized leader in her field, she runs a field station within the Area de Conservación Guanacaste in the northwest corner of the country.

“I fell in love with dry forest,” says Powers. From very early on establishing a long-term research program within the context of a conservation area was a goal. Powers did just that. She established her research site in 2001 and returns several times a year to do field work alongside her longtime field manager, Daniel Pérez-Aviles, a botanist trained at the country’s National Biodiversity Institute (INBIO), and field assistant, Damaris Pereira.

Powers received the University Award for Global Engagement earlier this year in recognition of her work in the region and her collaborative approach to research and local engagement.

Read more about Powers

Jennifer Powers