Rita Quelha (she/her), a 20-year-old Portuguese student in Aquatic Sciences at the School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences at the University of Porto, is a passionate advocate for the environment and scientific outreach. Proudly representing Portugal on the World Ocean Day Youth Advisory Council, she is committed to making a positive impact on the world through her dedication to science and environmental awareness.

With unwavering determination, Rita pursued her dream of becoming a scientist in the field of Aquatic Sciences. Her commitment to preserving the oceans and marine environment has been a constant on her journey, dating back to when she became a firefighter at the age of 17 to protect forests.

Beyond her academic pursuits, Rita is actively engaged in environmental awareness activities. She believes that education is a powerful tool for inspiring positive change and, therefore, dedicates herself to sharing knowledge with the general public. She participates in organizing scientific events, such as conferences and science cafes, where she strives to make science accessible and understandable to all, regardless of their academic background.

Her primary research focus is polar science, specifically the study of Arctic ice melting. Rita is acutely aware of the challenges the Arctic faces due to climate change and the critical importance of this ecosystem to our planet. She is dedicated to advancing our understanding of these issues and seeking solutions to mitigate negative impacts.

One of Rita Quelha’s major goals is to dispel common misconceptions about science, global changes, ecology, and other environmental topics. She believes that spreading accurate information and promoting critical thinking are fundamental to addressing the environmental challenges our world faces.

Rita Quelha demonstrates that a passion for science and the environment can lead to significant impacts. With her unwavering commitment, she tirelessly works to create a more conscious and sustainable world, where science is an accessible tool and information is the key to change.