Ernesto Anastacio Sanchez

Ernesto Anastacio Sanchez, aged 40, successfully completed his non-thesis Master’s degree in Entomology and Nematology while residing in Belize, Central America.

Mr. Sanchez has maintained a lifelong passion for science, with his interest in the field dating back to his high school years. This passion motivated him to earn a bachelor’s degree in biology from the University of Belize. After graduation, he then translated his enthusiasm into a full-time career, where he works as  Senior Quarantine Inspector, a position that requires working with various scientific aspects related to Points of Entry and Territorial Borders.

The primary contributing factor to Mr. Sanchez’s successful completion of the program and attainment of his master’s degree has been the adaptability of the Distance Learning Program. This adaptability encompasses both the flexibility of course content and the program’s accessibility from anywhere in the world. As a student managing a full-time job and family responsibilities, Mr. Sanchez relied on the flexibility offered by the Distance Program to incorporate his coursework into his busy life. He had the opportunity to work on assignments during quiet moments at the office, at home, or even while attending to tasks on the farm, ensuring the timely submission of all assignments. “I like the Distance Education Program because it is very flexible for people like us that have a job, a family, and want to achieve their goal of becoming an Entomologist,” Mr. Ernesto Sanchez emphasizes.

Despite living over 2,000 miles away from the University of Florida campus in Gainesville, FL, Mr. Sanchez did not feel disconnected from the program or the university. He fondly recalls one of his initial courses, Dr. Jennifer Week’s Agricultural Ecology course, stating, “This was the first course I did with UF, and it made me feel so welcomed as a Distance Learner. The course was well prepared and set the standard for what to expect during my degree.”

Now armed with his degree, Mr. Sanchez intends to continue to deepen his knowledge in the field of Entomology and apply his newfound expertise in his current role, where he intercepts pests on incoming packages into the country. He also shares his newfound knowledge not only with industry colleagues but also with those closest to him.

“Entomology has become part of my life. Seeing things in a different perspective has been a plus while doing my job, in reports writing, advising of pest status and treatment for friends that have crops. Most enjoyable, I can answer my kids’ curiosities of what kind of insect they find on the farm”, Mr. Sanchez elaborates.

Learn More About the Program

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