Doris Duke Conservation Internships Established At Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies

The Doris Duke Charitable Foundation today awarded a $126,500, two-year grant to the Yale University School of Forestry and Environmental Studies (F&ES) to support an 11-week summer internship program for graduate students in public and nonprofit environmental organizations. The award is part of 14 multi-year grants totaling $10 million given by the foundation this year to support environmental projects across the nation.

The internships will be awarded to current Doris Duke Fellows, graduate students in natural resources and the environment whose tuition is being underwritten through an earlier grant from the foundation. As many as 10 students will benefit from the internships each year.

“This grant establishing the Doris Duke Conservation Internship Program reflects Doris Duke’s interest in preserving the environment,” said Joan E. Spero, president of the foundation. “We are committed to funding conservation initiatives that are based on sound science and research, employ market-based approaches and partnerships, and broaden public awareness and participation in environmental stewardship.”

According to Stephen Kellert, professor of social ecology at Yale F&ES, the grant is a significant enhancement to the school’s Doris Duke Fellowship Program. “The foundation has addressed a compelling need,” says Kellert. “First through the fellowship program, and now with support for internship training, the foundation has provided urgently needed support in our efforts to develop leadership in conservation and environmental management.”

Doris Duke, a lifelong philanthropist, distributed nearly $400 million, often anonymously, to a variety of charitable causes. When she died in 1993, she left her fortune, including her properties, to the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation. The mission of the foundation, which was established in 1997, is to improve the quality of people’s lives by protecting and restoring the environment, seeking cures for diseases and nurturing the arts. With more than $1.4 billion in assets, the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation is among the largest philanthropies in the United States. The Foundation awarded approximately $48 million in grants in 1998.

In addition to Yale F&ES’s masters and doctoral degree programs, the school sponsors numerous special programs and centers, including the Center for Coastal and Watershed Systems, the Center for Children’s Environmental Health Policy, the Center for Environmental Law and Policy (jointly with Yale Law School), the Industrial Environmental Management Program, the Program on Solid Waste Policy, the Tropical Resources Institute, the Urban Resources Institute and the Yale Forest Forum. The school also participates in the internationally known Hubbard Brook ecosystem study in New Hampshire.

To promote the exchange of information and scholars on a global scale, the school has entered into more than 40 memoranda of understanding with colleges and universities, private organizations and governmental agencies in the United States, as well as with similar institutions in Latin America, Europe and Asia.

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