Meet Rice’s Graduate Ambassador Chia Hsieh

Hsieh shares her interest, experience, and advice to prospective graduate students

Rice University

Meet Chia Hsieh. Hsieh is a fourth year Ph.D. Candidate in the Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at Rice University. Hsieh is from Taiwan and is a Rice Graduate Ambassador. Ambassadors are students who represent the university and help prospective students gain knowledge of student life as a graduate student at Rice.

Hsieh chose Rice as a graduate school because she wants to be an ecologist. Her research interest is to investigate how environmental factors and human activities can influence the spatial distribution of animals and interactions among them globally, particularly in tropical areas. Understanding these relationships is crucial to her answering ecological questions about "Why are they there but not in other areas?" and essential to help make conservation plans to conserve them and the environment under climate change and land cover change.

When she is not conducting research, she is serving in various leadership roles within the Rice community. She is a part of the Taiwanese Graduate Student Association on campus.

Hsieh advises prospective students to be mindful of the resources a school and program may have to support their students.

“Do the research and look to see if your program provides support for talking and writing in English if English is not your native language,” said Hsieh.

Hsieh advises current students to create boundaries and celebrate even the small wins they may accomplish in graduate school.

“Try to have a work life balance and celebrate your achievements,” said Hsieh.

Outside of academics, Hsieh enjoys collecting DIY beauty models and going to Memorial Park, The Betty and Jacob Friedman Holistic Garden, the Texas Medical Center.

Graduate ambassadors can be contacted via email at Chia Hsieh can be contacted directly by email at