Every year, the Doris Duke Conservation Scholars Program at the University of California Santa Cruz selects 20 early-undergraduate Scholars from around the country to participate on a two-year conservation mentorship program centered on the summers between academic years. Our goal is to serve students from groups traditionally underrepresented in conservation, across disciplines, who can contribute to diversifying, redefining, and strengthening efforts to protect land, wildlife and water. We have chosen to focus our efforts on serving college freshmen and sophomores, at a stage when we can support their undergraduate careers and their choices as they graduate.
During the first year Scholars participate on an eight-week, intensive summer course integrating conservation design, leadership and research experiences while traveling with a close group of peers and mentors. During the second summer, Scholars pursue eight-week research and practice internships with nationally recognized conservation organizations and agencies. A professional development retreat after the second summer brings together the Scholar cohort and prepares them to apply for jobs and graduate school. Throughout the two years and beyond, we work with home mentors at each Scholar’s campus to provide ongoing support. Our Scholars receive a $4,000 stipend each summer and become part of the national Doris Duke Conservation Scholars network for life.
Undergraduates from any major in their freshman or sophomore year who are passionate about environmental conservation and increasing racial, ethnic, and cultural diversity of the field. Applications should be submitted online at https://conservationscholars.ucsc.edu/apply