My Fulbright experience – Obinna Nwinyi
As a young scientist and researcher, Nwinyi Obinna was burning with great desire to see a virile Nigerian society that can overcome its challenges.
It has always been his overriding desire to be exposed to the developed countries to learn this strong work ethic in order to understand how they able to achieve so much.
Therefore it was a dream come through, when he won the Fulbright Awards in 2010, to conduct his Ph.D research at the Indiana University, Bloomington Campus, USA. Mr. Nwinyi C. Obinna is a lecturer 1 in the Department of Biological Science, School of Natural And Applied Science, College of Science and Technology.
His research focus which took him to the USA for 9 months dealt with Biodegradation of Polynuclear Aromatic Hydrocarbons and Molecular Characterization of Bacteria species capable of utilizing the PAHs as carbon source from selected sites. This was carried out at the School of Public and Environmental Affairs (SPEA) under the supervision of renowned Professor F.W Picardal. The Mc Doel Switchyard site in Bloomington was used as his case study. The site is heavily polluted and needed bioremediation treatment for reclamation, for recreational purposes.
Obinna was able to isolate about eleven organisms (bacteria) that can be used for the treatment. He also developed ways to sustain and effectively apply them in the treatment of polluted sites. While there, his effort and hard work earned him Award Certificate of Achievement (first position) in the Global Food Security Seminar in Lincoln in October 2010 by the Director, Office of Academic Exchange Programs, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, United States Department of State.
Nwinyi was also awarded Honorary Nebraska Citizenship by the Governor and people of Nebraska. “All work and no play, makes Jack a dull boy” goes the saying. Despite his busy schedule and short time in the US,
Obinna was able to visit places of interest and met people like the Senator representing the State of Nebraska and the last Nobel Laureate in Economics from the School of Public and Environmental Affairs (SPEA).
He advises other young researchers to be more dedicated and focused in whatever they do.