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Alice Foster Scholarship

A generous donor started the Alice Foster Environmental Studies Award in 2007.  The scholarship provides a graduating student with $1000 toward their future education in an environmental field.

Our 2011-12 award winner is Eva Rocke, former Sustainability Coordinator at Feather River College.  Eva is pursuing a Master's in Environmental Studies at the University of Montana in Missoula. She provided us with an update of her progress in October, 2011:

"I'm enrolled full time in the EVST program and am really enjoying digging in to the community and to my courses. I'm taking a course entitled Food Politics (a seminar) that focuses on issues of food justice, food sovereignty, and community-based approaches to changing the existing globalized food system. I love it, mostly because it's helped me realize just how much I enjoy talking about food systems, globalization, and agriculture. Based on my research for our term paper for that class, I'm hoping to explore the role of women in agriculture and the role of gender in small-scale sustainable ag operations among young farmer populations in the West.

I'm also taking scientific approaches to enviro issues (a course that explores the ethics of science and digs into methodology) and a planning class in the geography department. All of the courses have overlapped beautifully with one another. Aside from coursework, I have a weekly shift at the local food bank, have been working for veggies on the campus farm, and am volunteering for the campus crisis line. In November, I'm hoping to apply for an Annie's Homegrown scholarship (Annie's mac and cheese, that is) for my thesis work this summer.

I'm hoping to intern with the Western Montana Grower's Cooperative as a way to expand my farmer network and build more relationships in the regional ag community. The class that I TA is also week I'm giving a lecture on sustainability in higher ed, so there's no doubt that my FRC experience comes in handy! The course is called Community & Environment and addresses sustainability as a broad lens through which we examine land use/conservation, the food system, and water privatization. I'm really loving working with students and being in this new role in the classroom."

Elise LaVanaway was the first recipient of the award, presented to her as a surprise at Spring 2007 graduation.  She graduated from the University of Idaho in Spring, 2011.  Here is Elise's thank you letter to the donor from Fall of 2007.

"Dear Scholarship Donor,

Thank you very much for your contribution to my continuing education in Wildlife and Fisheries Biology at the University of Idaho.  I am proud to be the first recipient of the Alice Foster Environmental Studies Scholarship Award.


I have almost completed my first semester at University of Idaho, and I am happy to say that it has been both challenging and rewarding.  This semester has been a learning experience for me, as I was unsure if my skills as a student were up to the four-year college level. I have found that I am more than up to the challenge, due to the preparation I received at Feather River College.  I have learned how to further improve my writing skills, especially in regards to writing at a scientific journal level (one of my professors was an editor for a wildlife journal for many years).  I have also had to work on my study skills, and learn how to prioritize my time. I feel very confident going into finals, mainly because I have solid A’s in all my courses, but also because I have been certain that I have what it takes to do well academically.

The scholarships I have received in order to help with my education, especially the Alice Foster Environmental Studies Scholarship Award, have made this first semester easier than it would have been otherwise.  Due to this support, I was able to pay for my tuition and other living expenses so that I did not require a job. This is the first time in more than seven years that I have been able to attend school without working, and this is reflected in my grades and the time I have to spend on schoolwork and other valuable activities, like fieldtrips and joining student groups that relate to my field.

In August, I moved from California to Idaho, and I discovered that moving out of state is not only a considerable endeavor, but also requires a large financial investment.  Part of my scholarship went to pay for the moving truck, gas and towing dolly. 

I truly appreciate the financial assistance provided by this scholarship.  Paying for college is one of the hardest parts of getting a degree, and through the generous donations of scholarships like this I have been able to focus on my education without having to worry about how I will pay for school.



Elise LaVanaway"

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Feather River College Environmental Studies