Tigers for Tigers: Esther Sindler (WC’2016) attends national aid summit

Participants of the Tigers For Tigers Conference
Participants of the Tigers For Tigers Conference

Tigers were the theme of the coalition conference held at 
Clemson University April 19-21.  The 
majority of participants were students from half a dozen colleges who had 
something in common:  they all attend 
schools who have a tiger mascot.  The 
topic of the conference was, you guessed it, tigers.  Real ones. 
Celebrity speakers  from various 
conservation organizations included Anjana Gosain (Tiger Trust), David Houghton
(National Wildlife Refuge Association), Carole Baskin (Big Cat Rescue), and 
more.

Esther Sindler visits at the Sustainability Center, meets its mascot
Esther Sindler visits at the Sustainability Center, meets its mascot

As a biology major, Esther Sindler (WC’2016) is interested 
in the conservation aspects of sustainability. 
“I was amazed to learn just how endangered real tigers are,” Sindler 
said.  “Even though there are only about 
4,000 left in India, about 12,000 are held in captivity in the U.S.  That’s grossly out of balance.  And you couldn’t use captive animals to 
replenish wildlife populations.  They wouldn’t make it out there.  And some of
them are even abused.”

One might say that a mascot is nothing but a symbol, but it 
sure united this group and had it focusing on a common goal in a short period 
of time. “We need to get the word out 
about the plight of the tiger in the 21st century,” Sindler 
continued.  “This magnificent animal is 
in real danger of becoming extinct.  That 
is, there may still be a few around in zoos, but it won’t be a native population.  I am looking forward to attending the next 
event.  Getting together with people that 
wear tiger buttons is neat.  But 
collaborating  with them on a common goal 
makes it an extraordinary experience.”