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Aya Mizumura is now working for international NGO The Nature Conservancy
Aya Mizumura is now working for international NGO The Nature Conservancy
Swapping the hustle and bustle of Tokyo for life as a post-graduate student in Brisbane was a challenge for Aya Mizumura, who received her Master of Environmental Management from UQ in 2010.
After recovering from the shock of the first few weeks of university life, Aya found that the many friends she made in her course helped her adjust to living in a different country.
“I want to emphasise that meeting fellow students from all over the world and getting to know their cultures was a very exciting and important part of my student life at UQ. I had so much fun with my friends in and outside the campus,” she said.
Aya is now based in Brisbane working as a Policy Advisor for international conservation NGO The Nature Conservancy (TNC).
Her main role is to expand TNC’s partnerships with private sector and Japanese government agencies and NGOs.
“As part of this, I am currently looking to assist an island country in the Pacific in developing a more responsible mining sector,” she said.
“I’m also working on a community/ecosystem-based climate change adaptation project in the Pacific, which will build resilience in local coastal communities against the impacts of climate change”.
During her degree Aya interned at TNC, where she worked on a report analysing Japan’s conservation policy, this lead to her receiving an offer of work.
“My degree from UQ prepared me with the knowledge and problem solving skills to deal with various global environmental and conservation issues,” she said.
The knowledge and experience of UQ’s lecturers and their network of environmental practitioners who taught in to the courses was something Aya valued highly about the program.
“I think having a graduate degree from UQ in the field of environment or conservation is highly regarded in Japan. UQ is seen as a strong research partner by government agencies, companies, and non-governmental organisations in Australia and the Pacific.”
The opportunity to attend COP10 of the UN Convention of Biological Diversity in Japan during her studies highlighted the strong global connections available to students at UQ.
 “I was able to see the process of formulating multi-national agreements at a UN conference and how NGOs can take part in that process,” she said.
“That was such a valuable experience for me and affected me a lot in choosing my career.”
Aya plans to continue with her career at TNC and contribute to conserving the marine resources of Asia and the Pacific.
“I also wish to help companies adopt more responsible and sustainable business practices that balance development and conservation especially in developing countries,” she said.

Last updated: Sep 17, 2012