Great Outdoors Wilderness Education Scholarship

Funded by
Liebenthal Family
“Keep your eyes on the stars, and your feet on the ground.”
― Theodore Roosevelt

Upon becoming president in 1901, Roosevelt established 150 national forests, 51 federal bird reserves, 5 national parks, and 18 national monuments.

In doing so, “the conservationist president” laid the groundwork for one of the most wonderful parts of life in the US today.

From towering Redwoods to eternal Ponderosa Pines, from Joshua Tree to Shenandoa, from the Pacific Crest to the Appalachian trails, and from sea to shining sea, we have so much to learn from the time we spend in the wilderness.

As anyone who has ever taken a camping trip knows, the outdoors teach us teamwork, problem solving in the face of unpredictable adversity, empathy, leadership, health and wellness, and more.

These skills translate to our day-to-day lives, leading to improved school performance, physical, mental, and social health, and emotional, behavioral, and intellectual development.

As our global climate crisis deepens, it has never been more important that we preserve both our environment and our joy for outdoor education and exploration.

Roosevelt foresaw this a century ago, writing:

“We have become great because of the lavish use of our resources. But the time has come to inquire seriously what will happen when our forests are gone, when the coal, the iron, the oil, and the gas are exhausted.”

The Great Outdoors Wilderness Education Scholarship is for students who have incorporated the outdoors into their education, worldviews, and career goals in some meaningful way.

Students who have worked as wilderness trip leaders, organized or participated in outdoor education sessions, spend significant time in nature on their own, have career aspirations in environmentalism and conservation, and more are all welcome to apply!

Essay Topic

What is your experience in the great outdoors? What have you learned? How does your wilderness experience affect your career goals?

Essay Length
500–1000 words
Scholarship Amount
Application Deadline
Mar 31, 2020
Winner Announced
Apr 27, 2020
Education Level
Graduate, Undergraduate
Scholarships Awarded
1 winner
Selection Criteria
  • Passion for Outdoors
  • Ambition
  • Impact