Donna Murphy Local Conservation Scholarship Award Winners

With a number of exceptional applications from students around the country, we are happy to announce the recognition of one outstanding student who stands as an inspiration to young people everywhere as she expertly illustrates commitment to education and passion for environmental conservation.

2018 Winner: Char’Donnay Alexander

I am currently a senior at Prairie View A&M University majoring in Political Science with a minor in Legal Studies. I aspire to be an attorney. I have always been passionate about serving my community and helping the environment. My most influential experience was when I visited Costa Rica on a service learning trip. The mission was the reforestation of the Mangrove tree which is very important to Costa Rica’s ecosystem. I learned so much about the this beautiful country and I was truly grateful for the experience to assist in this project. It showed me just how important it is for us to take care of our environment and made me want to do more to set a great example for those who will come after me.

In her own words:

“My first reaction when hearing that I received the scholarship was pure shock and joy. It was really refreshing to receive this great news.”

2017 Winner: Franklin Bertellotti

Franklin Bertellotti, 2017 winner of the  local conservation scholarshipFranklin Bertellotti is a high school senior residing in Los Angeles, California. He attends North Hollywood High School’s Highly Gifted Magnet, an accelerated program intended to prepare the city’s brightest students for success in higher education. Throughout his life, Franklin has consistently contributed to the natural sciences—whether through working with aggressive dogs at his local animal shelter or engaging in field research to categorize predatory birds, he loves to surround himself with animals and plants alike. When he is not engaged in academics, he is proud to work with his community, both through fundraising efforts for stray animals and engaging with other students through poetry and a shared interest in tabletop games. Franklin plans to pursue a career in ecology at Yale University and will continue to work to preserve the world around him.

In his own words:

“Winning the Donna Murphy Conservation Scholarship has granted me an incredible opportunity, and I am honored to receive this offer. When I began my involvement with conservation in high school, I knew that my path would be difficult—there are only so many environmental positions. For every hour I spent working to protect the “great outdoors,” I was worried that my efforts would be minimal at best. The discovery that my budding career in ecology is influential enough to support me financially through a scholarship gives me hope; both as a student and a conservationist, this award has bestowed a greater confidence in my abilities than ever before. The Donna Murphy Scholarship has given more than financial assistance—it has provided the knowledge that my actions have a greater impact than I could have possibly imagined. For this gift, I am grateful beyond words.”

2016 Winner: Caitlin Chiquelin

Caitlin Chiquelin winner of the 2016  Conservation ScholarshipCaitlin Chiquelin, a first-year Master of Environmental Management candidate at the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies, is the winner of the 2016 Local Conservation Scholarship, which recognizes student’s educational ambitions and dedication to environmental conservation.

Continuing her education at Yale after just graduating from Brandeis University with a degree in Environmental Studies, Caitlin exhibits an impressive history of devoting herself to her community and to local conservation. Caitlin has already taken advantage of opportunities to conserve the greater New Haven environment, and she strives to work for the Federal government on pollution prevention policy once she has graduated.

Prior to applying for the Donna Murphy Local Conservation Scholarship, Ms. Chiquelin developed her experience with significant volunteer and intern work in Massachusetts and beyond. She has been committed to helping improve the natural spaces in her community in Massachusetts, and consistently has worked on learning effective ways to protect individual species and entire resources.

Upon reviewing Caitlin’s application, it became evident her dedication deserves to be celebrated, giving us confidence in her aspirations of creating a better future protecting and inspiring others.

Ms. Chiquelin stated that the scholarship empowers and enables her to do environmental work she might have otherwise not been able to do. As she is interested in preventing pollution and focusing her studies on the nexus of water resource conservation and industrial ecology. Her past experiences and education seem to be just the beginning of significant environmental contributions from this exceptional young woman.

2019 Donna Murphy Local Conservation Scholarship

Information for 2019 Donna Murphy Local Conservation Scholarship applications will be coming soon.