Three types of scholarships are provided at emc.

The EMC Scholarship Fund covers full or partial registration and/or travel with priority given to local and state agencies, tribal and indigenous communities, followed by NGOs and academia.

A big thanks to EPA who continues to spearhead this effort annually!

And additional thanks to these individuals joining in support this year!
Jody Bickel • Hillary Bonham • Greg DeYoung • David Godley • Kyle Gunderman • William Lucas •
Carter Newt • Dan Nifong • Elizabeth Robinson • Jesse Robinson • Edwin Stanford • Ryan Winter!

The Judith Ferrell Taggart Founder Awards fund registration and some or all travel to EMC for one to two individuals meeting the mentoring and collaboration criteria.

(1931-2015) An educator, editor and writer, journalist, visionary, and successful business owner, Judy led with a balanced approach in the environment and life in general connecting different perspectives for the good of the economy, communities, and environment.

Collaboration Award
Andrew MacKenzie, Graduate Student (MS), West Virginia University

Mentor and Inclusion Award
Mayowa Aderoju, M.S. Researcher and Climate Conservation and Agricultural Sustainability Advocate

JFT Mentor and Inclusion Award Recipient

Mayowa Aderoju is a dedicated researcher and environmental activist hailing from Ilero, Oyo State, southwestern Nigeria. He currently completed his master’s degree in the field of Plant Pathology from the prestigious North Dakota State University. As an enthusiastic plant pathologist, he is actively engaged in research which promotes sustainable agriculture, he schedules tour guides for 4H students and conducts field trips for visiting regional and international collaborators. Mayowa has actively participated in over 15 research conferences and science fairs, either presenting his research findings or volunteering as a judge. Mayowa’s dedication to the field of plant pathology and environmental advocacy has garnered regional and national recognition, earning him various awards and spotlights for his contributions. Outside of academia, Mayowa is an environmentalist, lover of nature and an ardent extensionist saddled with the responsibility of educating, sensitizing, and disseminating cogent information that is practical to biodiversity, sustainable agriculture and environmental conservation. He is currently an ambassador of PargonOne advocating for Climate Conservation and Agricultural Sustainability through grass root education and outreach programs in collaboration with The Nature Conservancy and National Geographic Society on how human and climate change can impact “Fresh Water and Marine Conservation”. Being an active member of the Citizens Climate Lobby, he was delegated as a junior climate lobbyist to participate in the lobby day at the US Capitol Hill, where he had the opportunity to interact with Republican Senators and Representatives Congressmen, towards advocating for CBAM bill and other environmental-related policies. His passion for environmental conservation is unquenchable and this Judith F. Taggart Mentor and Inclusion Award is a validation that his advocacy and dream for a more habitable environment for all are valid and this motivates him to stay on this path and do more and more!!! On a final note, he believes that “Through collective efforts of environmentalists, together, we can leave a positive impact on the world, ensuring a better future for generations to come!!!”

JFT Collaboration Award Recipient

Andrew MacKenzie is a West Virginia University graduate student pursuing an M.S. in Wildlife and Fisheries Resources and a Certificate in University Teaching. Before seeking his M.S., Andrew received his B.S. in Wildlife and Fisheries Resources at West Virginia University with minors in Agriculture and Natural Resources Law and Conservation Ecology. As an undergraduate, he interned at Gator Country in Beaumont, Texas, focusing on community outreach and education of southeastern amphibians and reptiles. He assisted in data collection of Wood Turtle abundance and movement within the Allegheny National Forest of Pennsylvania. Additionally, he was a student aid for Dr. Jim Anderson’s lab. As a student aid, Andrew had the opportunity to assist several graduate students in data collection and processing samples for their projects. These opportunities as a student aid led Andrew to pursue his passions of teaching higher education and conducting wetland research. Andrew’s graduate research aims to assess the ecological impacts of wetland restoration techniques used in West Virginia riparian wetlands. Andrew has quantified the changes in community composition of anurans, birds, fish, macroinvertebrates, turtles, small mammals, and vegetation by collecting abundance and diversity data during and after wetland restoration and comparing his data to previously collected pre-restoration data. He has assessed the impacts of a soil amendment, 10% biochar:90% compost, on the growth rates and survival of woody vegetation planted during the wetland restoration. Additionally, he quantified macroinvertebrate community composition between three commonly used sampling methods, quantified the macroinvertebrate’s response to increased sedimentation from the bank grading during restoration, and assessed the effectiveness of installed stream structures as macroinvertebrate habitat. Andrew’s research will provide insight into biological and ecological responses from riparian wetland restoration for several taxonomic groups and evaluate the effectiveness of several wetland restoration practices. In addition to Andrew’s graduate research, he has pursued other research opportunities to enhance his professional development. Andrew has previously: 1) Led wood turtle aquatic surveys in the Allegheny National Forest, 2) Coordinated a wetland restoration project with Marion County, West Virginia student volunteers, 3) Worked on the Mountain Valley Pipeline as a Lead Avian Field Biologist, and 4) Assisted in wetland delineation surveys at Tomlinson Run State Park in Hancock County, West Virginia. Andrew has also taken several leadership roles within student organizations. Andrew is the Educational Committee Chair of the Society of Wetland Scientists Student Section and served as the Abstract Review Chair for the Society of Wetland Scientists Student Virtual Conference. At West Virginia University, he assisted in advising the Ducks Unlimited Mountaineer Chapter and was the previous secretary of the Division of Forestry and Natural Resources Graduate Student Association. Andrew’s commitment to research and development has been well-received and led to several accolades. He was inducted into the Clemson University Kennedy Waterfowl and Wetlands Conservation Center Graduate Student Partners Program in 2021. He won the Society of Wetland Scientists’ Best Student Poster Presentation at the 2022 Joint Aquatic Scientists Meeting in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Andrew finished second in the Student Poster Competition at the 2022 North American Biochar & Bioenergy Conference. Andrew has also received two scholarships. First, the Jon A. Kusler Scholarship to attend the National Association of Wetland Managers Annual Tribal/State/Federal Cooperation Annual Meeting in Shepherdstown, West Virginia. Second, a scholarship to attend the Winous Point Marsh Conservancy Graduate Student Symposium in Port Clinton, Ohio. Andrew enjoys playing his guitar and being in nature, whether birding, hiking, hunting, or fishing. You can often find Andrew around various hiking trails with his fiancé, Tara, and two dogs, Scout and Smokey.

Judy led with a balanced approach to education and outreach, convened diverse stakeholders to connect and learn from each other, brought business and government together for the sustained good of the environment and economy. She mentored students and young professionals across geographic and cultural boundaries to be the best at their chosen career. Judy was an editor and writer, a journalist, college English teacher, entrepreneur and successful business owner. A primary editor of NEPA, Judy also created the first outreach materials on nonpoint source for EPA, helped establish the first watershed conference, American Wetlands Month and Audubon’s America, the North American Lake Management Society and the Terrene Institute, and served as a delegate to the RAMSAR convention among other accomplishments, including the creation of the popular EnviroScape® models in use through the U.S. and globally.

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