Ethel WagasEthel is a junior faculty member and researcher from the University of San Carlos, Cebu. Her love and fascination for the ocean led her to pursue a Bachelor’s Degree on Marine Biology, which she finished in 2008. After earning her Master’s degree in 2012, she worked for a year as a coral gardener under DOST’s National Coral Restoration Program, establishing coral nurseries in Sogod Bay, Southern Leyte.

Her fascination for caves began during a joint project by FCD, USC, DENR and GIZ on the preliminary assessment of selected underwater cave systems in the country. She was part of the team who worked on the first biophysical assessment of Hinatuan Enchanted River Underwater Cave System and the Bababu Lake Underwater Cave System.

Being an open water diver and working in shallow, open water environments for most of her career, she finds this new field of study very challenging and enticing. She is now a strong advocate for the protection of underwater caves and plans to do more research on the ecology of underwater subterranean habitats in the near future.