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Sara Shallenberger Brown GCA National Parks Conservation Scholarship

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Category: Conservation & Ecological Restoration

The Sara Shallenberger Brown GCA National Parks Conservation Scholarship 

FOR COLLEGE UNDERGRADUATES AGED 19 - 20

Purpose: to encourage students to pursue careers in conservation by providing hands-on field training experience protecting the treasured resources of America’s national parks. The scholarship will allow the Student Conservation Association to expand its apprentice crew leader program into America’s National Parks.

History: Established in 2010, the scholarship is a tribute to the late Sara “Sally” Shallenberger Brown. It was launched in 2011 to showcase Mrs. Brown's dedication to the environment and ensure that her legacy will continue in perpetuity. A member of the Glenview Garden Club of Louisville, Kentucky since 1939, Sally Brown gave many years of active and influential service to environmental issues and conservation organizations on a local, national, and global level. The establishment of the scholarship both commemorated Sally’s 100th birthday and honored the centennial of the National Park Service.

The Brown scholarship was established in partnership with the Student Conservation Association, which was itself founded by Elizabeth “Liz” Putnam, a member of the Bennington Garden Club of Bennington, Vermont. For more about the Student Conservation Association, click here.

Provisions: Annually provides training, transportation and a $750 stipend for each student as an SCA apprentice crew leader working directly under two experienced leaders on a three-week, summer trail crew in one of America’s storied national parks.  The scholarship’s founders hope that students will build on their enhanced technical and interpersonal skills and become full-fledged crew leaders or pursue related careers in environmental education or outdoor leadership training.

Eligibility: Open to college undergraduates aged 19 to 20, with preference given to those with prior SCA experience.

To Apply: Applications are accepted by email only and must be received by February 23. For an application and instructions, click here. PLEASE NOTE: ONLY ONE GCA SCHOLARSHIP, FELLOWSHIP OR AWARD MAY BE APPLIED FOR ANNUALLY.  

Selection: Selection is by the Student Conservation Association in conjunction with the Garden Club of America Scholarship Committee.

Fund: The Sara Shallenberger Brown GCA National Parks Conservation Scholarship is managed by the Garden Club of America and administered by the Student Conservation Association.

Contact: GCA Apprentice Crew Leader Program, Liz Vogel evogel@thesca.org. Student Conservation Association, National Conservation Center, P.O. Box 550, 689 River Road, Charlestown, NH 03603. Tel: 603.543.1700. Fax: 603.543.1828

See Recipients          See Recipients by Year

Scholarship Opportunities Available

The GCA now offers 27 merit based scholarships, fellowships and awards in the areas of horticulture and its related disciplines, botany, including medicinal and tropical, native bird habitat, conservation and ecological restoration, desert studies, landscape architecture, urban forestry, garden history and design, coastal wetlands, and pollinator research.

In March of this year, 86 students and scholars were awarded over $300,000 to support a variety of academic endeavors ranging from summer environmental study and field work, to graduate level research. Their study will take place in institutions across the nation and some will do field work around the world.

GCA Scholarships - supporting the best and brightest.

Plant of the Year

Nominations for the Montine McDaniel Freeman Horticulture Award will be accepted by the GCA Horticulture Committee between March 1st and Dec 1st for the following year.

Nominate a Plant - recognize a plant that is under-utilized but worthy of preservation, propagation and promotion.