Current Students


Meet the MFRE’17 cohort!

With 31 students, this year’s cohort includes passionate individuals from diverse backgrounds and interests. The students come from all around the world including Canada, China, India, Mexico, Rwanda and the United States.


Learn more about some of them:


Blair Baillargeon. Blair graduated from The University of Saskatchewan with degrees in Economics and Finance, with a focus on research and statistical analysis applying to business and economic initiatives. Having spent time as an economics intern at Potash Corporation of Saskatchewan, the goal of helping nature feed a growing population resonated with him on a deep level. That played a large part in his decision to pursue the MFRE program. He also spent some time as a student management consultant for the government agency Innovation Saskatchewan, which has led to his desire to find a career in public policy.


Alvaro De La Vina. Alvaro was born and raised in Mexico City. He holds a degree in Industrial Engineering from Universidad Iberoamericana and has worked in the agricultural and forestry industries for the last 5 years. His professional ambitions lie on the agricultural and natural resource industry and after completing his degree at MFRE, he aspires to pursue an MBA and then start his own agricultural business.


Douglas Euper. Douglas holds a B.A. in Economics from The University of British Columbia. His passion for environmental and resource economics led him to pursue graduate studies in the MFRE program. He believes UBC is an excellent institution to study food and resource economics because UBC is situated in a province that faces issues across the broad spectrum of land use, forestry, fisheries and agriculture. Douglas is looking forward to expanding his data and analytical skills that will be applied in his graduating project and future career within the food and resource sector.


Paulina Gonzalez Miranda. Paulina holds a Bachelors degree in Financial Management and has experience working in the banking industry, managing foreign exchange accounts. She has also previously worked with a chemical company that made detergents and lubricants for the food industry in Mexico. She is excited to continue graduate studies in the MFRE program, as it provides an opportunity to apply theoretical knowledge and skills acquired in courses in practical settings through the Graduating Project. After completing the MFRE program, Paulina aspires to work in the farming or wine industry and later hopes to own a business in the future.


Teresa Hao. Teresa graduated with a B.Sc. in the Food Market Analysis program from The University of British Columbia. She previously worked for UBC Farm as a farm hand and for Richmond Food Security Society as a community outreach assistant. During her time at MFRE, she aims to refine her academic focus, build networks and explore problems and potential solutions, particularly as they relate to our food system, the environment, natural resources, and bio-energy. Teresa aspires to continue research in policy analysis or data analysis and is considering completing a PhD in the future.


Allison Li. Allison holds a Bachelor’s degree in Finance from United International College in China. She previously worked as an intern at the Bank of China where she analyzed market trends, created market portfolios, and made financial decisions. Allison is passionate about agri-business management and resource policy analysis. She is pursuing graduate studies at MFRE to apply her knowledge of financial economics and statistics training to the food and resource industry. Allison plans to pursue a managerial position in agribusiness to apply sophisticated theories to real-world food issues.


Yiling Liu. Yiling graduated from the University of Edinburgh with an honours Bachelor’s degree in Economics. She is currently a CFA level II candidate and is particularly interested in statistical and financial analysis. She has worked as an intern at the China Agricultural Bank and in the investment funds industry. As an MFRE student, Yiling aspires to develop her skills which will allow her to pursue a career as an economic analyst, in the fields of food, resources and agriculture.


Vishesh Nagpal. Vishesh holds a Bachelor of Engineering degree in Food Technology from Panjab University, Chandigarh and has worked previously with Nestle India. He is currently pursuing an MBA in Food and Agribusiness Management at Indian Institute in Management (IIMA), Ahmedabad. Vishesh is heading for a career in strategy consulting and is excited to visit UBC as an exchange student in the MFRE program.


Aanchal Sandhu. Aanchal holds an M.Sc. in Public Economics from Durham University and believes that her experiences during a Geneva study tour have allowed her to augment and diversify her outlook on matters of global concern. As a students’ representative at her college, she has had experience handling food supply, rationing, budgeting and resource allocation. Aanchal wishes to work for the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), where she aspires to contribute to research on eradicating poverty in developing countries and to work towards improving agricultural technologies and effective production services.


Lisa Vuningoma. Lisa is a graduate of University of Rwanda in applied statistics. She worked for the Institute of Policy Analysis and Research–Rwanda as a Research Assistant and later as Monitoring and Evaluation Officer. She is currently employed as a post-harvest advisor in LIFAM (Linking farmers to the Market) project. On a part-time basis, she works for her local NGO, “Organisation for Agricultural Support Services”. She looks to MFRE for advanced and practical knowledge which can lead to social-economic transformation of her country whose economy depends on agriculture and lacks experts in that field. She will use knowledge from the courses and experiences from other parts of the world to contribute in formulating better agri-economic policies. She believes that MFRE is a bridge to an outstanding PhD in the future.


Helen Zhou. Helen holds a B.A. in Economics from Simon Fraser University. Her research interest lies in economic statistical analysis, especially in the areas of food trade and environment. By pursuing graduate studies at MFRE, she plans to broaden her knowledge of agricultural economics and strengthen her technical skills regarding real world applications. She aspires to become a professional agricultural business analyst or market consultant in the future.