Welcome to the first ever DDCSP Alumni Council election!

There are 5 spots available on the council, each ready to be filled by one of the 15 amazing anonymous alumni applicants. ELP is not selecting any candidates. All decisions will be made by YOU, the DDCSP Alumni community!

You can vote for up to 5 candidates, but voting sessions are limited to one per scholar. So make sure you vote for everyone you want at the same time. Voting will close on June 20th. 

Confused about what the Alumni Council is? Visit our FAQ Page 


Fairy martin

  • Interest in DEI Inititatives
  • attentive and eager to pass on knowledge
  • passionate forward-thinker
  • people-person seeking connection

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The DDCSP Alumni Network has helped me discover parts of myself that I did not realize were under the surface. After my first summer, I discovered a passion for creating spaces for students from marginalized backgrounds to share the stories that have brought them to the Conservation field. My drive to pursue a career with a foundation in Diversity, Equity and Inclusion was affirmed by learning about what led each student and mentor to their path. More importantly, hearing these stories helped me realize how crucial retainment of these students in Conservation fields is and how that can only happen through an expansive support network. Through my involvement with the program, I have made lifelong connections to mentors, colleagues, and friends alike. For this reason, I am interested in giving back through the Alumni Council by helping other students within the network find these resources and where they belong in conservation.

Cave swallow

  • PoC Womxn in Tech
  • Developer, Geographer, Engineer
  • Hoping to build a platform with my colleagues to drive conversation, awareness and community for social justice and conservation
  • Aspiring to bridge the gap between conservation and technology

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I would share my perspective of being a womxn POC starting their career in the tech industry in a very white/affluent male-dominated space. I envision DDCSP be a network where we can all share our ideas and projects and make them align with the values and experiences we all bring. I have been reading "The New Farmers Almanac," and I think it would be powerful if we (DDSCP Alumni) could all contribute short stories within an app/website where we can share and inspire all of us to work towards something we feel is making an impact for marginalized communities, conservation, and future generations. A hub and think-tank type-safe space – where our ideas aren't shut down but challenged to be more inclusive-we can collaborate on what social and ecological issues we want to address. I'm prepared to build out a platform (code), collab on content, and design with my colleagues.

photo of telephone wires above photo of house

Welcome swallow

  • Being compassionate to one another
  • Supporting all members
  • Passionate member
  • Change comes within oneself
  • Love

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I want to create an environment where all DDCSP members and people with diverse backgrounds come together to help one another to bring love, joy, and a better understanding of what it's like to be an underrepresented person in the conservation world. As the current DDCSP Collaborative Mentoring Program Administer, I can use my experiences and networking skills to support the alumni council so we can help our fellow DDCSP members. I vision the DDCSP alumni network to be a safe haven where all members can ask for help, support, and provide mental health services to one another. I am reliable, responsible, and a devoted DDCSP member. For years on my free will, I have engaged with other members to help them advance in their careers (CV editing, jobs/internship/graduate school opportunities) and bring out their full potential. I believe with my drive and expertise, the council will benefit from me.

group of happy people in a huddle

Golden swallow

  • Support beyond the completion of the program.
  • Inclusive network by supporting DACA/Non-DACA and non-science scholars within the network.
  • Equal opportunities for professional development, career support, mentorship, entry-level job positions, and higher education for all scholars.
  • Maintaining the sense of community through the years.

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I am bringing to the council a motivated, persistent self & excitement to connect with other scholars. I envision the future of the DDCSP alumni network continuing to support scholars pursuing their dreams in the conservation field and extending that support beyond the completion of the program. Creating a more inclusive network by supporting DACA/Non-DACA and non-science scholars within the network by developing equal opportunities for professional development, career support, mentorship, entry-level job positions, and higher education. It is essential that every scholar within the network feels supportive to feel confident to reach back for support. As every scholar applied to be part of the program for a particular reason, everyone continues to make a positive change to make the world a better place. I've working towards this goal by maintaining relationships with other scholars across our community and getting to know their visions for the feature. This could benefit the network in connecting with other scholars and seeking feedback from members of our community who might not feel too connected.

collage of animal/landscape images and text

Mangrove swallow

  • DDCSP Alumni united by a common field/discipline AND common hope/visons
  • Alumni Council should ensure all alumni feel welcome to participate
  • Network can emphasize healing, growth, & shared vision
  • The Alumni Network should disturb the status quo, shift how people think
  • Network should energize and empower us in our work and lives

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The Alumni Network is an opportunity for professional growth, but it can also provide a sense of community beyond that of other alumni networks/programs. DDCSP Alumni are united by a common field/discipline, but also by common hopes and visons for the future. The Alumni Council should seek to ensure that all alumni feel welcome, especially new/former alumni who haven’t yet felt welcome or able to participate. On the Council, I would expand how we engage in this network in order to emphasize healing, growth, and shared vision. I want the Alumni Network to disturb the status quo, to shift how people think about environmental/social justice and being in a healthy relationship with the earth. The Network should be a space where people feel empowered and reinvigorated going into their schools and workplaces because they know they are a part of something big, that will change the environmental field and beyond.

Tree martin

  • Create a mentorship program where scholars have mentors at their respective institution (similar to what DDCSP @UCSC does).
  • Create events, workshops, fellowships, and conferences that include the broader network.
  • Motivate and empower scholars by giving them the influence and resources to reach their goals.

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The Doris Duke Conservation Scholars Program is easily the most impactful experience of my life because it drove me to find sustainable solutions to the challenges we face through bio-cultural conservation, biocultural conservation, and equity-based approaches. Given that I had this experience, I want to practice reciprocity to the community that made my dreams come true. To this experience, I want to be part of the glue that holds DDCSP together through partnership, mentorship, and programming that engages our network so that no one is forgotten in the realm of conservation. I intend to do this by including the broader network in our programming and creating a mentorship program with each of the schools so that scholars can have a leader in their respective locations. I am prepared to do this work by reaching out to each of the programs, host institutions, and the institutions that the scholars attend to foster a community of care. I will connect my own radical thinking to the council by being a "disruptor/path maker" meaning that I will transcend the impossible to become my possible and my reality as well as the reality of others. In essence, I will motivate scholars and DDCSP employees to become the best versions of themselves they can be so that no one is left behind and we can all grow to be well-rounded and equitable conservationists.


Sand martin

  • the land is rich but the people are poor
  • we should not be learning about the land from institutions
  • as conservationists, we have so much resources and knowledge in our network alone
  • let's have a long-term vision of releasing our dependence on institutions
  • let's help each other and our communities restore our relationships to the land

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In the past year, I’ve spent my time organizing in the liberation movement from the country my parents immigrated from. What I learned was that the land is rich, but the people are poor. What keeps us oppressed is our forced dependence on institutions, the people’s inability to become self-reliant on the land, and the erasure of ancestral knowledge. As a national network of conservationists connected to various communities, especially poor and BIPOC communities all over the world, we are already in the process of taking back environmental knowledge that is rightfully ours. I see potential in giving this network a long-term goal of helping our communities become self-reliant on the land. And we can do that by strengthening our connections, reallocating knowledge and resources from the institutions we have occupied, and making a return to the old way of learning about the land: in relationship with each other.

Slide with three images, the earth, The world Tarot card by AmbiSun, and text box: Who are we? the world, Meaning: we are complete, we have enough, all we need is each other.

Banded martin

  • life after Doris Duke can often feel unpredictable
  • I bring a perspective of understanding and support
  • I want to organize events and workshops centered on things not only related to career building but also community building

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In considering these questions, a favorite quote from Malcolm X comes to mind: "Stumbling is not falling." What I hope to bring is an understanding that the paths leading both to and from Doris Duke can be often be unpredictable and the pandemic has left many feeling untethered. The Doris Duke Community has always been one that feels like home, therefore my vision of the DDCSP alumni network is one that focuses on increased community building face to face, whether in person of virtual through events that focus on simple things like sharing interests or even setting up reading groups. In my own practice this has looked like keeping a strong bond and contact with my fellow cohort members and in uncertain times I think these are connections that many would enjoy rekindling.

Rock martin

  • Increase representation of individuals from Southeast Asia and the Pacific
  • Advocate for different social issues
  • Use my experience to contribute to DDCSP and increase the conservation and clean energy network

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As a Filipino settled on Guam, I am conscious of the practices and values of the people that inhabit Southeast Asia and Oceania, who are as diverse as the endemic species that occupy the same spaces. Additionally, these regions contribute very little to climate change, yet their communities often suffer from the worst effects of climate change. My goal is to uplift the voices and experiences from underrepresented communities while saving endemic species and working towards a cleaner future. If I were a part of the DDCSP Alumni Council and the DDCSP Alumni Network, I will work hard to increase the representation of Asian Americans and Pacific Islander individuals, as well as other minority groups. I have worked with undergraduate communities to develop STEM workshops and panels, as well as advocating for different social issues in these regions. I hope to use these skills to develop a stronger DDCSP community.

Forest swallow

  • Big deep love for people I’ve met through DDCSP
  • I’d be a different me if not for them
  • I stay drawn to environmental/justice work
  • We shine bright (alone and together)
  • Let’s dream in technicolour together

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Some of the best people I know are from DDCSP (OG cohort and alumni events). I would not be who I am (becoming) if not for DDCSP. I have explored different ways I want to do environmental/justice work (with a desk job, in a city, with my artwork) largely because of the conversations I had through DDCSP. I have served on advisory committees and hiring teams bringing more voices into conservation/environmental spaces. I want the network to feel like looking up at the stars at night. Knowing that each star (or planet or asteroid or space) shines brightly on its own but as a collective form the image of the beautiful night sky. I’m learning to shine and to help the people around me shine. I want the network to have space for dreaming and depicting our dreams in bright, saturated colours and then coming together to manifest those dreams.

picture of handmade paper

Purple martin

  • Believes that the DDCSP community is the perfect place to practice revolution, in facilitating an environmental movement made in the image of all of us
  • Would like to help push a DDCSP network wide curriculum around the complexities that non-men and/or Black scholars experience in the outdoors
  • Would like to push a safety protocol for fieldwork in the DDCSP community

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We are currently experiencing the greatest existential threat this world has ever seen - the climate crisis. If we can agree that success means preserving the valuable things in our lives that preserve our physical, emotional and social well being, then solving the climate crisis must start there. In our backyards and our relationships.

In other words, I believe it starts with rehearsing revolution in our everyday lives. The great Audre Lorde once said: “Sometimes we are blessed with being able to choose the time, and the arena, and the manner of our revolution, but more usually we must do battle where we are standing.” In such, I believe that we can replicate these dynamics in our everyday lives. I believe that the radical social activism we need to solve the climate crisis can be rehearsed in the stage that is our lives and the relationships we find ourselves in. As a community, DDCSP exists as a one-of-a-kind affirming space for our community to build collective power in the conservation movement. As a founder of a non-profit with a similar goal, I would like to contribute to the council in ensuring our programming embodies environmental justice and continues to prepare our community to facilitate an environmental movement made in the image of all of us. I specifically would like to help integrate a conservation privilege walk/discussion (that leads to the creation of an outdoors safety protocol) into the DDCSP framework, so that our field work requirements are cognizant of the complexities that non-men and Black scholars experience in the outdoors.

Blue swallow

  • DDCSP is the most influential part of my education/career
  • I want to help the Network grow as a place for support, job, hunting, socializing, learning, and healing
  • I want other to capitalize on this experience and to have BIPOC faces in every conservation org

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DDCSP has been the most influential part of my career in conservation. Through the program I gained the skills and network to compete for positions and strive in the position I have chosen to take. However, my time with DDCSP has been the only time where the community of conservation has shown any diversity, which has led me to continuously have imposter syndrome. As a member of the Alumni Council I would work to support our alumni and communicate the importance of using our network using my own personal experience and struggle doing that. I want the Alumni Network to be the place our alumni go for support, job, hunting, socializing, learning, and healing. My personal dream is to see BIPOC in every leading conservation organization there is. To achieve that I want to help expand our network and increase use/interactions.

Tumbes swallow

  • Radically listen to Scholar’s needs and interests.
  • Build awareness and increase access to DDCSP resources.
  • Establish cross-program networking opportunities.
  • Create opportunities for professional development (ie. connect alumni to prominent researchers, Scholars, and activists in the conversation and environmental field).
  • Increase regional events for Scholars to bond and take part in exciting field trips/environmental excursions.

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I envision a future where the strengths of DDCSP are institutionalized at every college in the United States, and we’ve dismantled the barriers to the conservation field. The Alumni Network will lead that transformation and the future of conservation. We will grow together across space and cohort years through regional events and Scholar meet-ups. I will support these goals by contributing my leadership and community organizing skills to the Council and Network.

I am a tested leader of food justice programs on campus and in my community, and in organizing BLM mutual aid funds with the DDCSP network. I am specifically trained in “radical listening” as a means to develop interactive tools for community building. Radical listening encourages individuals to listen intentionally to fully understand an issue. By listening first and acting second, I plan to execute programming that reflects the interests of the entire DDCSP Alumni Network.

Infographic with pale yellow background and boxes for Listen, Communicate, Connect, Network, bond

Hill swallow

  • Hijack the institution and employers
  • CC = culture changeeeeeeeeee [up!]
  • #whenadultingISNTaScam
  • Life&reality gives us a reason to be upset, SO BE UPSET
  • U in commUnity, me in saME(!)... i tried..

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I wish for: transparency in systemic realities, dialogue and healing, hope and inspiration, tangible opportunities for growth. This looks like strengthened commitments from organizations, institutions, employers, that are committed to prioritizing and hiring interns and graduates from low-income and/or BIPOC backgrounds. I have, for 3+ years, supported low-income and BIPOC youth and families to financial, educational, and academic literacy and mobility. In addition, I'm currently overseeing community engagement, sustainability education, and climate equity plans and projects. Working towards this vision involves continuing to have extremely uncomfortable conversations and not being afraid to ask for equity and plans in place for holistic success, even if that means multiple times. The legs in my radical imagination are: my eagerness and lived experiences in building and mobilizing community, to have real conversations, and in my belief for support, whether that looks like: mxentorship, monetary, mental and professional support, etc.

Black & white picture of workers walking on a dirt road with an image of the sun at their backs

Striated swallow

  • academic and career coaching
  • "how" to guidance
  • emotional support and encouragement
  • plenty of dog and plant pics

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I enjoy providing career and/or academic guidance and resources to friends and peers. My experiences have given me the wisdom to navigate relatable milestones, such as negotiations. Recently, I successfully coached a friend in negotiating a higher salary offer. I’ve remained in contact with three undergraduate mentees I had in college and helped one land internship at my organization. I envision bringing this experience to the DDCSP Alumni Network because DDCSP Scholars need resources and mentorship to decipher major life decisions. This ranges from optimizing the gains from an internship or job to needed emotional support and encouragement to negotiate. In previous years, DDCSP has provided this kind of programming but often lacks the “how”. This is immensely intimidating once you factor in marginalized identities our network carries: BIPOC, low-income, first-generation, age, etc. I will help create intersectional and multi-faceted programming that I’m sure our network will appreciate.

Tan husky resting on green grass, wearing sunglass and sticking its tongue out