Scholarships and Awards

W.A. Franke College of Forestry and Conservation scholarships - Scholarships for both undergraduate and graduate students. Scholarship application now open - deadline is Feb. 14, 2018.

University of Montana scholarships

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Burchenal Leadership Scholarship

The Burchenal Leadership Scholarship provides support for undergraduate students majoring in wildlife biology with GPAs of 2.5 or higher. Recipients must demonstrate excellent communication skills, leadership qualities, and a strong work ethic. Apply through FCFC scholarship application.

Christian Bowers Memorial Scholarship

This scholarship was established by Christian’s parents for a returning undergraduate student majoring in wildlife biology in good academic standing and exhibiting financial need. Christian was to enroll in the Wildlife Biology program in the fall of 1997 but was struck by lightning before classes began. Apply through FCFC scholarship application.

Dan Pletscher Scholarship for Avian Science

This fund provides scholarship support for students with an interest in behavioral ecology who wish to pursue that interest with experiential learning, internships, or research. Preference shall be given to those with an interest in avian science and/or bioacoustics. A GPA of 3.0 or above is preferred. This award is made available to qualified undergraduate or graduate students within either the wildlife biology program or the organismal biology and ecology program (in the Division of Biological Sciences). The fund honors Dr. Dan Pletscher, who served as the Wildlife Biology Program Director for 19 years before retiring in 2013. Apply through FCFC scholarship application.

George and Mildred Cirica Graduate Student Support Fund

The George and Mildred Cirica Graduate Student Support Fund provides support for graduate students studying wildlife biology. Support may include graduate scholarships, summer research awards, graduate stipends, or other student support as determined by the director of the Wildlife Biology Program. Apply through FCFC scholarship application.

The Herman William Gabriel Scholarship

The purpose of the Herman William Gabriel Scholarship is to provide an annual award to a student studying wildlife biology. If the student continues in good academic standing, he or she will continue to receive the award until graduation. The scholarship was established by Herman William (Bill) Gabriel, forester, wildlifer, photographer, and writer. Bill earned his doctorate at the University of Montana studying the effects of forest fire history on big game habitat in the Bob Marshall Wilderness. Apply through FCFC scholarship application.

James C. Salinas Memorial Scholarship

This scholarship is provided by Vera Salinas to honor her late husband’s memory and commitment to conservation. It is awarded to a senior in Wildlife Biology who has demonstrated superior academic performance and has financial need. The Wildlife Biology faculty selects the recipient. Apply through FCFC scholarship application.

Les Pengelly Scholarship

The Les Pengelly Scholarship was established in 1991 after Dr. Pengelly’s death at age 73 after a battle with cancer. Contributions from friends, family members, and associates established this endowed fund. Dr. Pengelly was extremely influential in resource management. An extension wildlife specialist from 1954-1963, he lectured throughout the state reminding wildlife biologists of their responsibilities. From 1963-84, he held a permanent faculty position in Wildlife Biology. He was president of the national Wildlife Society in 1978-79. He also served as the first chair of the Environmental Studies program at UM. The scholarship is awarded to a junior or returning graduate student in Wildlife Biology demonstrating outstanding scholastic achievement and a strong land and conservation ethic and dedicated to transmitting knowledge concerning wildlife and wild areas to the public. Financial need is also considered secondarily. Apply through FCFC scholarship application.

Mike Barker Scholarship

This fund provides support for undergraduate students majoring in wildlife biology with a minimum GPA of 3.0 and financial need (as determined by the Office of Financial Aid Need Analysis). Mike Barker graduated UM with a bachelor of science degree in wildlife biology in 1975. Apply through FCFC scholarship application.

OnXmaps Fund

This fund supports wildlife biology graduate student research projects currently being conducted in the Northwestern U.S. with a preference for projects in Montana. Funding cannot be used for tuition. 

The Peter C. Kotte Memorial Scholarship

The Peter C. Kotte Memorial Scholarship provides scholarships to University of Montana undergraduate students in the Wildlife Biology Program. Qualified students are those who have an excellent academic standing with a GPA of 3.2 or higher. Preference is for a non-traditional student who is also a veteran.

Peter C. Kotte was a Missoula, Montana native who proudly worked 16 years of his adult life for the U.S. Air Force. He was studying wildlife biology at the University of Montana in 2006 when a heart attack took away his dream of completing his degree. Peter was an active outdoorsman who loved fishing, hunting, and skiing. He was most concerned for the safe conservation of deer and elk. While not a specific requirement, students with similar interests are encouraged to apply for this award. This fund was established by an anonymous donor who has held Peter in her heart for a lifetime. Apply through FCFC scholarship application.

SCIF Sables Susan and John Monson Hunting Heritage Scholarship

SCIF (Safari Club International Foundation) Sables Susan and John Monson Hunting Heritage Scholarship will provide support to undergraduate students studying wildlife biology. Recipients must have a 3.0 or higher and demonstrate financial need as determined by the Office of Financial Aid. Preference is for a female student in her junior or senior year. Scholarship recipients may be invited to attend an SCI First for Hunters Convention. Apply through FCFC scholarship application.

Soka'piiwa Scholarship

This award supports undergraduate students majoring in wildlife biology. Soka'piiwa is a Blackfeet word which loosely translates to "it is good." Apply through FCFC scholarship application.

Susan Churchill Scholarship

The Susan Churchill Scholarship provides support to be used for tuition at Flathead Lake Biological Station or for other experiential learning opportunities for undergraduate students majoring in the aquatics option within the Wildlife Biology Program. Every reasonable effort will be made to ensure that applicants for this scholarship include highly qualified female students. Susan Churchill earned her degree in Wildlife Biology in 1977, at a time when female graduates of the wildlife biology program were rare. Susan spent much of her career as an environmental consultant. Apply through FCFC scholarship application.

Thomas H. Leik, Sr.Wildlife Biology Scholarship

The Thomas H. Leik, Sr. Wildlife Biology Scholarship provides support to graduate or undergraduate students in good academic standing in the Wildlife Biology Program. It was established in memory of Thomas H. Leik, a fisheries biologist and wildlife statistician who worked for Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks (1960-67) and the Wyoming Fish & Game Department (in the 1950s). Apply through FCFC scholarship application.

Wesley M. Dixon Graduate Fellowship

Rocky and Julie Dixon established this award in 2014 in memory of Wesley M. Dixon, Rocky’s father. Wesley M. Dixon, or “Wes” as he was known to friends, was an avid outdoorsman and conservationist. He received a B.A. from Yale University in 1950, and married Suzanne Searle in 1953. He served as Vice Chair and Director of G.D. Searle and Company from 1977-1985 and, during that time, was instrumental in creating the International Sales Division. Wes was passionate about his involvement with many not-for-profit organizations, including The Boone and Crockett Club and the Shikar-Safari Club International. The Wesley M. Dixon Graduate Fellowship provides full tuition and stipend support for an outstanding M.S. or Ph.D. student in the Wildlife Biology Program. Apply through FCFC scholarship application.

Wesley M. Dixon Scholarship for Montana Students

Rocky and Julie Dixon established this award in 2014 in memory of Wesley M. Dixon, Rocky’s father. Wesley M. Dixon, or “Wes” as he was known to friends, was an avid outdoorsman and conservationist. He received a B.A. from Yale University in 1950, and married Suzanne Searle in 1953. He served as Vice Chair and Director of G.D. Searle and Company from 1977-1985 and, during that time, was instrumental in creating the International Sales Division. Wes was passionate about his involvement with many not-for-profit organizations, including The Boone and Crockett Club and the Shikar-Safari Club International. This scholarship provides tuition support for two students majoring in Wildlife Biology who are Montana residents. Apply through FCFC scholarship application.

Wesley M. Dixon Scholarship for Out-of-State Students

Rocky and Julie Dixon established this award in 2014 in memory of Wesley M. Dixon, Rocky’s father. Wesley M. Dixon, or “Wes” as he was known to friends, was an avid outdoorsman and conservationist. He received a B.A. from Yale University in 1950, and married Suzanne Searle in 1953. He served as Vice Chair and Director of G.D. Searle and Company from 1977-1985 and, during that time, was instrumental in creating the International Sales Division. Wes was passionate about his involvement with many not-for-profit organizations, including The Boone and Crockett Club and the Shikar-Safari Club International. This scholarship provides tuition support for an out-of-state undergraduate student majoring in Wildlife Biology. Apply through FCFC scholarship application.