It’s a proud moment for Hyderabad as a city-based student Sahil Ahmed has been nominated by the US Consulate General for a prestigious five-week student exchange programme called The Study of the U.S. Institutes (SUSIs). The 17-year-old has been selected under the Global Environmental Issues 2018 category.
Sahil will participate in an all-expense paid programme to the US from June to August 2018. The B.Sc student (biotechnology, biochemistry and chemistry) from St. Mary’s College is ecstatic! Talking about how he got the opportunity, Sahil says, “My college had nominated me along with a few others. We had an interview for 25 minutes with the US Consulate and we just got the results in April. We were supposed to hear from them in February, so I first thought that I wasn’t selected.”
Sahil will be participating in several workshops and seminars along with students from Brazil, Japan, Russia and China. Sahil has interned with the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) in Hyderabad as an illustrator for a bird app that is currently being worked on. He also volunteers for excursions and trips to wildlife sanctuaries in Telangana. “I have loved wildlife since I was five years old. Even when there were snakes in my backyard, I would be fascinated but never scared. I soon began volunteering with WWF. Since I had a lot of knowledge about the wild, the interviewers were impressed. When they asked me what would I do after the exchange programme, I told them that I would compare the scenario of wildlife in India and other countries and implement the ideas that are being used in other countries to conserve the wildlife here,” he states.
The illustrations Sahil makes for WWF are impressive. “These illustrations are going to be a part of their app that helps people identity birds in any area and also suggests how to help the birds if needed. I also illustrate for their newsletters among others. I would like to keep conveying my thoughts through my illustrations and do my bit to save wildlife,” he says.
Apart from sketching for WWF, Sahil also draws extinct animals. Dinosaurs fascinate him and he often sketches their musculature and how they would look if they had evolved over the years. “Most of my work is in grey and black, I would love to use more colours. I am learning more about pollution, bioremediation and plastic. I want to give my best at the programme,” he concludes.