Meet Bindiya Rashni, International Exchange Alumna from Fiji!

In 2009, Bindiya was nominated by U.S. Embassy Suva to attend the Study of the United States Institutes (SUSIs) for Foreign Undergraduate Students Program on Environmental Movement in the United States.

“SUSIs for Foreign Undergraduate Students Program was a stepping-stone for my career as an environmental scientist. It gave me the exposure to environmental problems, green solutions, networking opportunities and the zest to think global and act local. The six-week program enabled me to influence policy through scientific validity. SUSIs planted a seed of custodianship of Mother Nature. Today, that seed has formulated into a career driven by passion and commitment.”

Bindiya is a fanatic about freshwater science. She is the Oceania Regional Coordinator for the global Freshwater Biodiversity Observation Network (FWBON). Her specialty is freshwater macroinvertebrate, periphyton and plankton taxonomy and ecology and is Fiji’s only freshwater macroinvertebrate specialist. In Fiji, she works with tertiary institutions as well as Government departments to contribute to Fiji’s National Biodiversity Strategic Action Plan. She is also a Conservation Officer for NatureFiji-MareqetiViti where she is committed to making science accessible to local communities. By doing so, she empowers communities at grassroots level; a bottom-up approach for natural resource management and climate resilience capacity building.

SUSIs is the U.S. Department of State’s professional exchange program. To learn more about the program, visit: