Scholarships in Environmental Studies

Each year the Environmental Studies Program is proud to award a number of scholarships to students majoring in any of the degrees offered by the ES Program (B.A., B.S., and Hydrologic Sciences). Below is a list of the ES Program Scholarships. In addition, there are a large number of campus, community, and other scholarship opportunities available and interested students are encouraged to seek out additional information via UCSB's Financial Aid Office.

A list of past recipients of ES scholarships can be found on the ES Awards page.

List of Scholarships

Yearly Application Deadline

Matthew Charles Decker Memorial Scholarship for Field Studies
     $1,000 awarded annually to help cover the cost
     of participating in a env. field studies program

Application Deadline: Friday, February 21, 2020

Barker Scholarship for Environmental Internships
      $1,000 in scholarships per year to assist students
      who enroll in unpaid environmental internships

Application Deadline: Friday, February 21, 2020

ES Research Enhancement Awards ("REAs") for Undergraduates
     Up to $500 per award to ES students
     conducting research or activites that will
     enhance their educational and career goals

Click HERE for Reasearch Enhancement Award Application

Pearl Chase Scholarship in Environmental Studies 
     $1,000 to 1,500 awarded to one or two students on the
     basis of academic achievement and financial need

Application Deadline: early April each year. 

Tom Rogers Scholarship in Environmental Studies
      $2,500 to $5,000 awarded to a student(s) whose efforts
       embody the ideals of civic responsibility and
       environmental stewardship

Application Deadline:  Mid-May

U.S. Gilman Scholarship to Study & Intern Abroad (incld. field studies programs)
       Over 2,000 scholarships of up to $5,000 is avaialble
       every year!

Deadline: multiple times each year. See website


The Matthew Charles Decker Memorial Scholarship for Field Studies

Award is $1,000 to $1,500 annually 

Application deadline: mid-late February

Download the latest Decker Shcolarship application here!  Applications due by Friday, February 21. 2020.

This award is intended to provide a scholarship to qualified UCSB Environmental Studies or Hydrologic Sciences majors to significantly diminish the costs of participation in an environmental field study in the area of wildlife management or environmental conservation. Eligible field study programs must be offered through an accredited academic organization such as, but not limited to, The Wildlands Studies Program, The School for Field Studies, Sierra Institute, or The Wild Rockies Field Institute. The recipient is expected apply the credit earned towards their major and/or graduation requirements.

Scholarship: $1,000 - $1,500 to be used toward the cost of a student’s participation in environemntal field study in the area of wildlife management or environmental conservation.

Who's Eligible: Applicant must be a declared Environmental Studies or Hydrologic Sciences major with at least sophomore status at time of application and a minimum overall GPA of 3.0. Award can be used any quarter as long as units earned from the completed program are applied towards one’s major/graduation requirements.

Instructions to Apply:  Applicants meeting the criteria noted above should submit an essay not to exceed three pages stating why they wish to study in the wilds, how doing so relates to their studies and career aspirations, and how this scholarship would assist in accomplishing their goals. On a separate cover sheet, include your full name, perm number, current class level, overall GPA, local address and phone number. Please also include the name of the field study program and project(s) you hope to attend, including the dates the program will be offered. Applications will not be processed if the above information is not provided.

Application and essay should be submitted as an attached .pdf by email to Awards are announced in March.

For more information about ES scholarships please stop by the Environmental Studies main office in Bren 4312, or contact the ES Academic Advisors or by emailing

The Matthew Charles Decker Scholarship was established in the loving memory of Matthew Charles Decker, an Environmental Studies undergraduate major at UCSB, who suffered a fatal skiing accident in March of 1995 during his junior year at UCSB. Matthew was an honors scholar whose love and commitment to the environment was an inspiration to all who knew him. He completed a wildlife study program in the Fall of 1994 during which he interacted with wolves, bears and the astonishing beauty of nature. This educational experience left him in awe of our Mother Earth and instilled in him a resounding commitment to work on behalf of the environment.


The Dr. Pearl Chase Scholarship 

Award is $1,000-1,500 annually and sponsored by The UCSB Affiliates of the University of California, Santa Barbara

Application Deadline is: Mid-April

Downliad the current application here!

Scholarship Information: The UCSB Affiliates of the University of California, Santa Barbara, will award one scholarship of $1,500 to a qualified UCSB undergraduate majoring in the area of environmental studies. The award is made on the basis of academic achievement (minimum 3.0 GPA), financial need, community activities, campus activities, honors and employment background. Recipient must be a registered student during current academic year. Please direct all inquiries regarding the scholarship to Cheryl Kelly in Institutional Advancement at 893-4388 or email

Application Procedure: Please direct all inquiries regarding the scholarship to the Office of Community Relations at 893-4388.


UCSB Affiliates Scholarship Committee 
c/o Office of Community Relations 
1175A Phelps Hall 
University of California 
Santa Barbara, CA 93106-1136 

Scholarship Award Procedure and Administration of Funds: The UCSB Affiliates Scholarship Committee and appropriate University faculty will select the recipient(s) of the Dr. Pearl Chase Scholarship. The scholarship recipient(s) will be notified by letter of his or her selection in June.  The scholarship will be presented at the UCSB Affiliates Annual Awards Ceremony to be held early in Fall Quarter. The recipient is expected to be present. The scholarship award may be used by the recipient to defray necessary expenses of advanced education such as tuition, living expenses, books, supplies, or University fees.

The Barker Scholarship for Environmental Internships

Award between $1,000 - $1,500.

Application deadline: mid-late February each year.

Download the latest Decker Shcolarship application here!  Applications due by Friday, February 21. 2020.

The Environmental Studies Program awards one to two Barker Scholarship annually to assist a student who enrolls in an unpaid environmental internship. The purpose of this scholarship is to lessen the financial burden on students so that they may pursue an unpaid internship and gain valuable hands-on learning experience in the environmental field of their choice.

The Barker Scholarship will be awarded to one (1) full-time junior or senior Environmental Studies or Hydrology major who possess a minimum overall GPA of 3.0. Scholarship can be used any quarter prior to graduation and disbursement of the money is contingent upon securing an internship and enrollment in at least 2 units of ENVS 192, Internship in Environmental Studies.

How To Apply Applicants meeting the eligibility criteria must submit a one to two page essay stating why they are undertaking the internship, how it relates to their studies and career goals, and how the award would ease financial burdens that may otherwise limit their participation in an internship.

On a separate cover sheet include your:full name, perm number, address, phone number, email address, current class level, and GPA. Also include the title and dates of the internship you have secured or plan to pursue in an upcoming quarter. Please list the name(s) of any previous internships you have completed in the past.

Submit your essay and cover letter as an attached .pdf by email to Awards will be announced in mid March.    

For more information about scholarships and the Internship Program, please stop by the Environmental Studies main office in Bren 4312, or contact the ES Academic Advisors or by emailing

For ES Internship Program information please visit the website or contact an ES Advisor.


The Tom Rogers Scholarship in Environmental Studies

The Tom Rogers Scholarship awards approximately $5,000 each Spring to students majoring in the Environmental Studies Program at UCSB (both ES or Hydro majors are eligible). The application deadline is normally late-April/early May. This scholarship is made possible by the generosity of Environmental Studies Program alumni and community supporters.

The Tom Rogers Scholarship Fund at UCSB was established in late 1999 to honor Tom Rogers, a role model for civic and environmental leadership. Among the many achievements of Tom Rogers are his service on the Santa Barbara City Council and County Board of Supervisors through 1994. As a civil servant, he voiced and voted for sound environmental planning and progressive policies for long-term community benefits. The Fund provides for annual scholarship(s) to be awarded to students who are majors in the Environmental Studies Program at UCSB. Selection of scholarship recipients is based on their personal efforts that embody the ideals of civic responsibility and environmental stewardship exemplified by Tom Rogers in his career.

Each Spring one or two scholarships, ranging from $2,500 to $5,000 each, will be awarded to a UCSB Environmental Studies or Hydrologic Science major(s) whose past and present efforts best embody the ideals of civic responsibility and environmental stewardship.

Application Deadline is early May each year.

Applicant Eligibility:  Qualified applicants must be continuing undergraduate students who are declared majors in the Environmental Studies Program and have demonstrated civic, community, educational, and environmental involvement. Applicants should have a minimum overall GPA of 3.0 and must be enrolled at UCSB for at least two quarters after receiving the award. Although financial need will be considered in the selection process, eligibility for financial aid is not required to receive this scholarship.

Applicant Instructions:

Application instructions are included on the the application.  Completed applications should be submitted to the Environmental Studies Program in electronic format as a .pdf file.  For a copy of your current transcript access your grades via GOLD’s Academic History and save the page as a .pdf or print, scan, and save it as a .pdf. You may elect to copy and paste it at the end of your application.

Tom Rogers Application Materials/Process:

1) On a cover sheet, please include the following:

Perm Number
Current telephone number
E-mail address
Local mailing address
Overall UCSB GPA
Expected quarter and year of graduation

2) Provide the following:

  • Current copy of your unofficial UCSB transcript, with separate notes to explain special courses 
    not clearly identified on the transcript
  • Chronologically list and briefly describe your involvement in past and/or present civic, 
    community, or environmental services or organization.

3) Please answer the following two questions (limit your answers to 400 words per question)

  1. How have your experiences in the civic, community, and/or environmental services noted above influenced your decision to become a major in Environmental Studies?
  2. How would the scholarship award enable you to continue or enhance your education and civic, community, and environmental involvement?

Completed applications should be emailed as a single attachment to Erinn Magann O'Shea at:  

Award Procedure & Administration of Funds:

Scholarship recipient(s) will be determined by aSelection Committee consisting of ES faculty, alumni, and community members. In mid-May, scholarship
finalists will be notified and invited to interview with the selection committee. The scholarship recipient(s) selected will be notified in late-May. Recipient(s) may use the award to
defray expenses associated with theirundergraduate education, such as tuition and fees, living expenses, books, supplies, and special project costs.
NOTE: Recipient(s) should expect to see 1/3 of their award deposited into their BARC account at the beginning of fall, winter and spring quarters.
Additionally, please be aware that University Policy and federal and state regulations requires the reporting of resources, i.e. monetary awards, students receive if they are financial aid recipients. Adjustments must be made to a student’s financial aid package when a resource results in overage of the recipient’s financial aid award amount. Please direct any questions regarding your award and how it will affect your financial aid to your Financial Aid Advisor. Prior to graduation a one-page report will be required of the scholarship recipient(s) highlighting their accomplishments and activities since receiving the award.

Questions? Please direct all inquiries regarding the scholarships to the address above, or call the Environmental Studies Program at 805/893-3185.

The Marc McGinnes Environmental Law and Advocacy Award/Scholarship

Established May 2005 to honor J. Marc McGinnes upon his retirement after 33 years of service to the UCSB Environmental Studies Program, this award of at least $500 will be given annually to a deserving ES senior in recognition of: outstanding academic achievement in the Environmental Studies major in general and in environmental law courses in particular, outstanding environmental service and leadership as an undergraduate student, and outstanding promise of future achievement in environmental law and/or environmental leadership.

This award is chosen by the ES Program's faculty awards committee each spring. If a student wishes to nominate someone or themselves, please send an email message, attn to: ES Scholarship Selection Committee, via emai to:



ES Research Enhancement Awards for Undergraduates

Download the Current Year's Application Here (.pdf) 

Goal:  Provide some funding for ES students conducting research or similar creative activities that will enhance their educational and career goals. Funding is available for supplies and expenses, campus recharge for space/facilities usage or NRS Reserve charges, and mileage reimbursement or other travel expenses directly related to the research. Funding cannot be used for salaries.

Amount of funding: up to $500 per an individual award. 

Requirement:  Student must be a sophomore or junior Environmental Studies Major and must be conducting research under the guidance of a faculty member or one of their graduate students. Students who are seniors may apply if they are staying through the following summer and fall. Must have a GPA of 3.0 and must have a faculty sponsor.

To apply: submit a 1-2 page description of the proposed research, and a proposed budget.  Student should also indicate the faculty sponsor and provide contact information for them.

Restrictions:  A student funded by a faculty member’s research grant can apply as long as they are conducting their own clearly identifiable piece of research within the larger lab framework.  All applicants must have a faculty sponsor. 

The money is strictly reimbursable through ES staff. It will not go into the students BARC account. Students must save and file receipts or fill in travel forms for mileage or other travel reimbursement (forms available from ES office staff).  Funds must be spent while student is still enrolled. Unspent funds will be returned to the Department.  A report of how the funds contributed to the research product is required before final reimbursements. Recipients should contribute a poster to the annual Undergraduate Research Symposium in May of the year following receipt of the award, assuming they are still registered students.

Timing of application: Applications can be submitted at any time via email to Erinn O’Shea at Decisions on applications will be determined within 4 weeks of submission. 


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