The University of Maine seeks outstanding applicants for a National Science Foundation-funded graduate research traineeship program that will prepare the next generation of conservation leaders. These scholars will integrate biophysical and social sciences in collaborative, engaged, and solutions-driven research, professional development, and coursework.

Protected areas at all scales conserve ecological and sociocultural systems, promote geological, biological, and cultural diversity, and protect landscapes and ecosystem function. Since the 1970s, global policies have increasingly linked nature conservation with human development goals, particularly as we move towards a more integrated and collaborative paradigm for protected areas. As of 2015, protected social-ecological systems have been identified as one of the United Nations’ sustainable development goals to reduce poverty and support sustainable livelihoods for all people.

Transdisciplinary research and active learning experiences central to the program will address governance frameworks, biodiversity conservation, sustainable rural livelihoods and resource dependent economies, stewardship values, citizen science and participation, and spatial sciences. Students will have internships with one of our federal, tribal, state, or NGO partners. Our goal is to build a well-trained and experienced workforce to advance conservation solutions that will ultimately lead to enhanced resilience of socio-ecological systems in Maine and beyond.

Students must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents to receive NSF support, and must be seeking a M.S. or Ph.D. degree. For further application and program details, visit our website: