Olli grew up in rural Finland surrounded by forests and pristine wildlife. His enthusiasm for conservation biology started at young age when he participated in local wildlife monitoring and game management activities. He followed his passion for the environment and enrolled in a BSc Honours program in Sustainability with a minor in Nature Conservation at Leiden University College in the Netherlands. During his studies he learned more about global environmental issues and ways to approach them. He also held an internship in salmon conservation in northern Finland during which time he developed an interest in conservation biology. For his Bachelor’s thesis, Olli researched the hypothetical reintroduction of grey wolf to Scottish Highlands as means to manage the local red deer population. After graduating he took up an internship in the Natural Resource Institute Finland during which he participated in biogas research. From his studies at UCT Olli hopes to deepen his understanding in social-ecological systems and improve his research skills in the field of conservation biology.
Vegetation change in the ecotone between grassland and Nama-Karoo in the Eastern Cape. (Supervisors: Timm Hoffman, Chevonne Reynolds)