Participants & Testimonials

Join a diverse group of environmental professionals who manage, influence, and govern tropical forest landscapes. 

Participant Overview

Participants to date represent:

  •   180+ organizations
  •   60+ countries

Participants include:

  •   Staff members from governments, NGOs, aid agencies, foundations, businesses, extension agencies and academia
  •   Graduate students and recent graduates
  •   Landowners, farmers, ranchers and community organizers
  •   Individuals seeking professional development or career changes

Image: Locations of program participants to date



Hear from current and past program participants.

Nancy Saumu Pite (TFL '22)

Kilifi, Kenya
“The Tropical Forest Landscape certificate program is enlightening, as we are able to learn about strategies to restore degraded landscapes from lecturers and other students.

The program will support me on my journey to be the director of forestry in Kilifi county, where I will be able to implement most of what I am learning now.

I love the interactive live sessions so much and the Capstone project helps one to think and be creative. The assignments invite one to reflect on what has been learnt and through the discussions one can have a taste of other people’s experience with different aspects of the course.”

Roeland Esser (TFL '22)

Castricum, The Netherlands
“This program has taught me the basic concepts of ecology and how I can use this knowledge in conservation and restoration practices. What stood out to me the most is that there are many elements that determine the approach to be taken for a restoration project, making the process very complex.

The abundant research experience that the lecturers have and share as case studies during the course makes lectures not only a joy to listen to, but also a great way to learn how I will approach my own restoration project."


Richard Nforbuh (TFL '22)

Extended Enterprise Limited
Douala, Cameroon
“I joined this program with a literary and social science background, and I am lucky to be undergoing a personal ecological transformation as part of it.

The impact this course will have on my career is huge - it will permit me to acquire skills and learn about strategies and techniques that will assist my capstone project to restore ecological functionality.

By improving degraded, damaged, and destroyed landscapes, I will be contributing in my own way to sustainably meeting society’s diverse and changing land use needs as well as strengthening the livelihoods in my region.”

Stefanie Buxel (TFL '22)

Almira, WA, United States

"This program has helped to reshape the way I think conservation is done.

The Strategies course was especially useful in helping me design a meaningful conservation project. The mentors were supportive and encouraging, even when personal events got in the way of my course work. The faculty was also available for questions whenever I had them.”

Thor Kuchler (TFL '22)

Nijmegen, The Netherlands
“The ELTI Tropical Forest Landscapes program takes a multi-disciplinary focus and gives access to an abundance of knowledge with a broadly oriented curriculum that allows for people of many different professional backgrounds to enrich and consolidate their knowledge, in line with their particular needs.

The program offers state-of-the-art knowledge aligned with current trends and developments in the conservation, restoration, and sustainable development sectors.

The assignments, and in particular the Capstone project, have helped me to build skills in project development by offering a structured approach to project formulation. The program instructors are very accessible and eager to engage with you on any topic. Many guest lecturers also contribute to the program with their complementary approaches and knowledge. Last but not least, the program provides you with a large abundance of relevant resources. The program has helped me to professionalize my career by both deepening and broadening my knowledge, as well as provided me with tools, references and a network that will prove to be useful throughout my future work."

Nick Benitos Goll II (TFL '22)

REDD+ Implementation Unit
Monrovia, Liberia
“Initially, I thought that I was only going to learn things I was already familiar with considering my background in forestry and environmental science coupled with my extensive experience in the environmental field.

However, being enrolled in the program has been a whole new experience as I've been introduced to so many new and evolving concepts.

The course enables you to look at conservation and natural resource management from diverse angles that incorporate people, ecosystems, and strategies. There are many insightful reading materials available, and the live sessions and reflections introduce you to different perspectives from colleagues and help shape your thoughts. The capstone gives you hands-on experience designing your own project. Joining this program will be a rewarding experience for prospective students; I highly recommend it.”

Jan Kreibich (TFL '22)

UNSW Centre for Ecosystem Science
Sydney, Australia

“This program requires some significant amount of time and effort, do not underestimate it. But it is worth every single moment of it.

After every lesson I am blown away by the Yale ELTI team’s vast knowledge and incredible dedication, the infectious enthusiasm of fellow course participants with their rich experience in ecological restoration from all around the globe, and the invaluable insights and tools which I cannot wait to apply to and implement into my own large-scale river and wetlands restoration work on the Lower Murrumbidgee River in south-eastern Australia.”

Brandon Elrod (TFL '22)

Community Forests Council
Santa Ana, CA, United States
“Through this program I am gaining the knowledge I needed to parlay my career in commercial arboriculture into a Community Forestry model.

I've been able to incorporate many of the program's concepts already, including stakeholder mapping and stock and yield analysis, into my Community Forestry planning.

For anyone like myself who is outside of the typical forest restoration scenario, I'd encourage you that the concepts apply far beyond the bounds of the obvious, and as an example, I've been able to utilize them within master-planned communities. It's worth your time investment!”

Khalil Walji (TFL '21)

Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO)
Rome, Italy
“The program provides a primer, and solid scientific underpinning to broad-ranging and interconnected theories of conservation, restoration, and planning, as well as exposing participants to a range of real-world examples and lessons. It allows me to exchange and engage in dialogue on the most up-to-date and recent literature on the subject matter.

As a professional working in the policy & research nexus, this is the perfect piece of academic exposure.

The live sessions are well run, engaging, and use examples from student submission which allow them to be dynamic and personal. The content is also well thought out, and extremely engaging - there is not enough time in the week to digest it all, although I wish there was. This is a real commitment, it will take time to truly benefit from this course, however, your level of commitment can be tailored to your needs - which means for working professionals this can be a great after-work personal development course. In the end, the program exposes you to a wide range of critical skills and theories that are at the forefront of the global biodiversity, climate, and other agendas, which are crucial to understand and thrive in the space.”

Marine Gauthier (TFL '21)

The Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies
Paris, France
“The programme is incredibly insightful! I feel I am making progress already after a few months in my daily work. I learned planning tools that I can directly use, and each week brings both new practical and academic knowledge. The capstone course is a unique opportunity to focus on my project and has already led me to gather all project partners around the table so that we can consolidate a common vision and move forward all together.

The mentors’ availability is unique. They are highly responsive by emails, and you can book appointments. It sometimes makes me forget this is an online certificate!

The courses cover an incredibly vast array of subjects, yet we can dig quite deep into each issue thanks to the live session and the possibility to exchange with the lecturers. I am sincerely amazed by the diversity and the quality of the students’ backgrounds and the exchanges we have. The cohort itself is a wealth of information!”

Zipora Otieno (TFL '21)

Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) 
Regional Office for Africa, Accra Ghana
“This is a practical, hands-on course focusing on the application of knowledge, skills, and techniques rather than just the theory itself. I am finding the course interesting and immensely useful and relevant to my current role at the FAO. The course has made me think more critically about the tools and strategies I use on a daily basis and how they can be applied in a more effective way.

Within a very short time, I have been able to build, expand and leverage my professional networks through interaction with other course participants.

The flexible learning arrangements, the support from the program mentors, and the quality of content provided by the instructors have been outstanding, allowing me to effectively balance my work commitments and studies. The course instructors have extensive field experience and real-life insights! They are not just academics. They are also very easy to contact and very personable. Despite it being a distance learning course, which requires greater self-motivation, the weekly live sessions and the blended learning allow greater interaction among students and the faculty. I highly recommend this course for any environmental professional looking to take the next big step in their career.”

Wesley Snell (TFL '21)

Conserve Natural Forests
Padova, Italy
“The instructors have done a remarkable job showing us every tool in the toolbox: from ecology, biodiversity, and soil health to land tenure, governance, and community-based conservation to stakeholder analysis, research design, and monitoring programs.

Despite the range of topics, this holistic program does not sacrifice depth for breadth.

The integration of this knowledge and my capstone project has dramatically improved the clarity, organization, and precision of my work restoring tropical dry forests in Thailand.”

Fabiana Servantes Munhoz (TFL '21)

Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
“This program presents relevant content in a very practical fashion. The courses allow us to learn about and discuss the relationships between people and tropical forests, including people from different cultures.

Being from the private sector, the critical thinking I'm learning in this program is a key element for achieving transformative change in developing inclusive and responsible supply chains.

Overall, the program encourages us to analyze and address the many social issues around people and inclusion in conservation projects.”

Henry Putranto (TFL '21)

Central Kalimantan, Indonesia
“This program is very beneficial for those who want to learn about conservation activities and the strategies of landscape restoration.

We are guided step-by-step to do the capstone project, given helpful tools, and provided with opportunities for feedback and discussion.

In addition, the lectures and case studies in the program are really valuable and eye-opening.”

Roxana Auhagen (TFL '21)

Bern, Switzerland
“For me, diversity is what captures best the essence of this fascinating program.

The variety of research experience and practical knowledge shared by the lecturers and incredibly enriching diversity of participants, enable great exchanges and learning on different levels.

That diversity is reflected in the lively discussions of multidisciplinary approaches which suit the complexity of the topics at hand. All this makes the program a truly rewarding experience!”

Teresa Kennedy (TFL '21)

Environmental Investigation Agency
Washington, DC, United States
“I knew based on the Yale School of the Environment's reputation that the content of the program would be excellent. However, as we have worked through the different courses of the program, I am continuously impressed by the flexibility of the ELTI program.

I appreciate that each student can decide for herself
how much time she wants to dedicate each week.

The effort each week can easily be adapted based on interest in a topic, workload outside of ELTI, or anything else that comes up. It has made me feel like I am learning for the sake of learning and not just completing assignments to meet deadlines or professor expectations.”

Pheakkdey Nguon (TFL '21)

European Forest Institute 
Kuala Lumpor, Malaysia
“I decided to join the program as a way to refresh my knowledge on forest governance regimes, reforestation, and landscape restoration. I did not expect the courses to go deep into very scientific topics such as forest disturbance and soil science.

However, I was grateful for it because it exposed me to topics that are very relevant, but I have not explored previously

The lectures, readings, discussions with my cohort via the weekly reflections and the live sessions with the instructors are very useful to clarify these concepts.”

Anazelia Tedesco (TFL '21)

The University of Queensland 
Brisbane, Australia
“In spite of having my entire career related to conservation and restoration of tropical forests, I had never pursued formal training in the area.

This program allowed me to integrate a solid knowledge base and practical experience with the most current solutions, challenges, and best practices in conservation and restoration."

Nick Nugent (TFL '21)

Mumbai, India
“After working in agriculture, clean energy, and carbon for ten years straight out of college, it feels great to be back in a rigorous learning environment at ELTI.

The instructors pay close attention to the participants' projects and give nuanced feedback to help guide our real-life work.

Engaging with the instructors and students from around the world has been a highlight of the ELTI course thus far.”

NSOH NDAM Elvis (TFL '21)

Ministry of Forestry & Wildlife
Yaoundé, Cameroon
“This capacity building, which is in line with the African Forest Landscape Restoration Initiative (AFR100) to which Cameroon is committed to restoring 12 million hectares, will be of great importance for the improvement of my knowledge on restoring degraded landscapes. From a general point of view, this program has allowed me to distinguish between restoration and aspects of reforestation and afforestation which only represent part of the operations of a restoration project. This training is also very beneficial in the sense that it exposes you to the management of a conservation project.

The lecturers go through all the stages of project management and help you to develop a framework for consulting the many actors necessary for project success.

The capstone project of this training has caught my attention because of all the tools you learn. I have learned to carry out a SWOT analysis and develop multi-stakeholder radargrams based on the strength, capacity, motivation, and mandate of many different actors. I have also learned to identify the threats to conservation and contributing factors while proposing strategies to be implemented to mitigate these threats and develop a real project that will benefit communities.”

Holly Bynoe (TFL '21)

Sage Gardens Barbados 
Weston, St. James, Barbados
“In this program, I am broadening my understanding of how restoration strategies can impact the landscape whilst taking into consideration how important people are in this scenario. The program has enabled me to speak to stakeholders and other partners in a comfortable manner on the challenges that Barbados is currently going through. It will furnish me with the knowledge of building out a larger conservation and food security project in my country.

The 2020-2021 cohort consists of a group of dynamic people with such a range of knowledge, and the way we share is especially fruitful.

The live sessions every week along with the assignments and instructors have been beneficial and outstanding thus far. They grow my knowledge and challenge me weekly to think through my proposed Capstone project. Overall, the courses allow for the digestion and assimilation of knowledge at a pace that is thrilling and challenging. Prospective applicants should be aware that this is a serious commitment. I spend roughly 6-8 hours a week with readings, viewing the lectures, case studies, and of course attending class. However, the sacrifice of time directly affects my knowledge and ability to follow the systematized way of thinking through the context of my landscape, its history, social behaviors and intrinsically the nature of post-colonial societies.”

Pilar Pedrinelli (TFL '21)

The Rainforest Alliance 
Amsterdam, Netherlands
“Protecting forests is to me one of the most efficient and best ways forward to combat climate change. One of the biggest yet rewarding challenges that we have as an organization (Rainforest Alliance) in this field is working globally with indigenous and local communities to increase their capacity for forest management and enterprise development.

Taking this program allowed me to become a better advocate and translate my leanings into a proper narrative that can benefit lots of people.

I am leading the Rainforest Alliance's public engagement work, and I developed my career in this field as I believe that what is going to make us change and click as humankind is proper informed storytelling. I joined this online certificate program to be able to understand the causes and the effects of deforestation and, in detail, how we can effectively reverse the direction that our world seems to be heading towards. My personal challenge is to understand all the complex nuances of this work and make sure that I am educated enough to distill the key message and connect it to people's everyday life and everyday choices. I love to translate complex topics in a simple (yet not simplistic) version that can connect with people, and I was provided now with a great and important platform to tell a great story.”