NatSci student nominated for elite national scholarship

  • Mar 23, 2018
  • Research, nomination, undergraduate, Udall Scholarship, national scholarship
  • Homepage News, Alumni, Faculty & Staff, Research, Students, EES

Image of Hunter Stanke

Hunter Stanke

Hunter Stanke, an MSU College of Natural Science (NatSci) sophomore majoring in environmental geosciences in the Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences (EES), has been nominated for the 2018 nationally competitive Udall Scholarship.

The Udall Foundation awards scholarships to college sophomores and juniors who demonstrate leadership, public service and commitment to issues related to Native American nations or to conservation and environmental issues. Each year, the foundation awards up to $7,000 for educational expenses to 60 outstanding students in the United States. Stanke was one of four students chosen this year by the MSU nomination committee.

“For me, a nomination for the Udall Scholarship is truly empowering,” said Stanke, who is also majoring in forestry in the MSU College of Agriculture and Natural Resources and is an Honors College student. “I hope that this feeling is experienced by my mentors, peers and friends at MSU.

“I came to college to make a positive impact on the world, the environment and in people's lives,” Stanke added. “Receiving this nomination is a humble step toward that goal, and I hope that my experiences will help to inspire those around me to do the same.”

Stanke, who was nominated in the environmental category, said he would use the scholarship funds to help offset the cost of tuition and to support his research on Chronic Waste Disease, an emerging deer disease in Michigan.

But, he said, the nomination means far more to him than just the money.

“I grew up in a rural community, and the fact that I was able to come to school and be a part of a group that makes a difference in the first few years I was here has been incredible,” said Stanke. “I hope it encourages other students. It doesn’t matter how old you are or your major, you can make a difference.”

MSU has produced 12 Udall Scholars.

“Hunter is an exceptional scholar in the Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences and is testament to the caliber of students we have here in the department, the college and at MSU,” said David Hyndman, professor and EES chair. “Hunter was also recently nominated for the Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship. We are very proud of Hunter and wish him the best as he competes nationally for these scholarships.”

The scholarship provides access to the Udall Alumni Network, an association of those working in tribal policy, Native American health care and environmental fields. It includes five days at the Scholar Orientation in Tucson, Arizona to network, meet current and former scholars and build community with the over 2,000 Udall scholars.

To learn more about the scholarship and the Udall Foundation, click here.


Banner image: College of Natural Science building. Photo courtesy of NatSci.