The TCD Student Group (TCDsg) was established in May 2008 to build up our community and provide a platform for greater student participation in the TCD program.

Each semester, the TCDsg organizes a diverse range of educational, social, and service events. We typically host a welcome party at the beginning of each semester, and have also held film screenings/discussions, camping trips, trail cleanups, and more.

In the second half of each semester, we host a fundraiser to raise support for TCD student scholarships. The fall semester fundraiser is traditionally a lively and hilarious Bingo event with great participation from students, staff, and faculty. The spring semester fundraiser is the wildly popular Taste of the Tropics—a cooking competition featuring amazing dishes and prizes from around the world!

The TCDsg also organizes the weekly Tropilunch seminars as well as the Conservation and Development Forum (CDF), in which graduate students, professors, and visiting scholars have the opportunity to present their research and engage in discussions revolving around conservation & development issues around the world.

Our student group is a great way to get more connected and involved in the TCD program. We always welcome ideas and are eager for ways to better support one another and strengthen the TCD program. Elections for TCDsg officers take place each spring semester for the following academic year, but don’t let that stop you from getting involved now!

Note: If you are a prospective TCD graduate student, feel free to contact us by email or on Facebook if you would like to chat about student life here at UF and in the TCD program.

Governance Structure (2017-2018)

  • President: Ben Lowe (Master, SNRE)
  • Vice-President: Johanna Espin (PhD, Sociology)
  • Treasurer: Ana Luiza Violato Espada (PhD, SFRC)
  • Secretary:  Fall 2017: Vratika Chaudhary (PhD, WEC); Spring 2018: Metia Lembasi (Master, SFRC).
  • Tropilunch: Felipe Pinheiro (PhD, SNRE)

Past Officers


For questions and to be added to the group’s Listserv: TCD Student Group email. To learn about current news and events: TCDsg Facebook