F&ES Doctoral Student Named Canon National Parks Science Scholar

Marc Stern, a doctoral candidate at the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies, has been named a Canon National Parks Science Scholar for his research on the relationship between national parks and people who live near them.

Stern was one of eight Ph.D. students who will receive up to $78,000 for a maximum of three years as part of the Canon National Parks Science Scholars Program for the Americas, which seeks to develop scientists interested in conservation, environmental science and national park management. The scholarship program is sponsored by Canon U.S.A., Inc., the National Park Service and the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

Research projects were chosen from the biological sciences, physical sciences, social/cultural sciences and technology innovation in support of conservation science. Since the Canon National Parks Scholars Program began in 1997, students have conducted research in over 45 national parks and published and presented over 55 scientific articles.

Stern’s research, titled “People, Parks and Participation: Analyzing the Impacts of Outreach on the Relationships Between National Parks and Their Neighbors,” will explore the underlying mechanisms driving the relative successes and failures of community outreach programs implemented by three national parks: Great Smoky Mountains National Park in Tennessee and North Carolina, U.S. Virgin Islands National Park on St. John, and Podocarpus National Park in southern Ecuador. The goal is to develop strategies for more effectively incorporating the needs, rights and talents of local residents into the management of national parks.

Stern, a native of Flemington, N.J., holds a bachelor of science degree in natural resources from Cornell University and a master’s degree in environmental science from the School of Forestry & Environmental Studies. He was a wildlife biology intern in northeastern Utah with the USDA National Forest Service and an environmental consultant in natural resource damage assessment for two years for the U.S. Department of Justice, the United Nations, the Akwasasne Nation of the Mohawk tribe and other public entities. He has co-edited a book, “Transboundary Protected Areas: The Viability of Regional Conservation Strategies,” on international peace parks. The book is scheduled to be published this month by Haworth Press.

The School of Forestry & Environmental Studies is a graduate and professional school that provides teaching, research and outreach in broad areas of environmental science, policy and management to 200 candidates for master’s degrees and 75 doctoral students. The School’s graduates are equipped to assume influential roles in government, business, nongovernmental organizations, public and international affairs, journalism, research and education.

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Dave DeFusco: david.defusco@yale.edu, 203-436-4842