International Student Visitor Arrives in Auburn for Forest Service Internship

Wellington Cardoso, an undergraduate student from Brazil, is visiting the Forest Operations research unit in Auburn, AL. Photo courtesy of Dana Mitchell.

Wellington Cardoso, an undergraduate student from Brazil, arrived in Auburn, Alabama, this past January to begin an internship with the U.S. Forest Service Southern Research Station. “Cardoso will play a major role in studying a biomass harvesting operation,” says Dana Mitchell, project leader of the Forest Operations research unit, which is hosting Cardoso. The operation will examine harvesting technologies for short rotation woody crops. Cardoso is originally from Salesópolis, Brazil, a town of approximately 16,000 people. “It is small, but I am honored to say that the Tietê River is born there,” says Cardoso, who is a senior forestry student at the University of São Paulo. “My first class at the university was with Dr. Fernando Seixas. He introduced me to the forest universe.” Seixas also encouraged Cardoso to contact Mitchell about possible internships. “I was very nervous to talk to her,” remembers Cardoso. “But once I found out about Dr. Mitchell’s research in biomass harvesting systems, I became very excited, because the field is so interesting.”

“Cardoso introduced himself to me through email back in May, 2013,” says Mitchell. “We discussed a program of study, and worked with Emily Betz Close of  Forest Service International Programs to complete the required paperwork.” Cardoso also applied for funding from the Brazilian scholarship program Bolsa USP Empreendedorismo, which offers undergraduate students the chance to study abroad. “A lot of students apply for this scholarship,” says Cardoso. “After three long months I found out I was accepted.”

Cardoso’s internship lasts until July, and he is eager to see the field operations in action. “I’m also a fan of American football,” says Cardoso. “I was disappointed to find out that Auburn football doesn’t start until August, but I did get to see the Super Bowl!”

For more information, email Dana Mitchell at

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