Scholarship recipients from the University of Arizona were announced at the Annual Meeting of the Arizona Section of the Society for Range Management in Silver City, New Mexico on 10 January 2019.
Josie Profy was the unanimous selection by the University of Arizona faculty to receive the Outstanding Undergraduate Student in Ecology, Management and Restoration of Rangelands scholarship for the Arizona Section of the Society for Range Management and a monetary award of $350. Ms. Profy was raised in Pennsylvania, and moved to Tucson four years ago to attend the University of Arizona. Her biggest passion has always been horseback riding. Since she was 15 until she left for college, Ms. Profy worked as a trail guide at the stable where her horse was boarded. Her favorite part of the job was engaging the customers in discussion about the horses and the landscape of the Pine Barrens State Park. Ms. Prophy says the Ecology, Management and Restoration of Rangelands program “fit the exact mold of what I wanted to do [because it] encompasses every aspect of what I love and am passionate about: working outside, land stewardship, and livestock management. After graduation, she plans “to use the knowledge and skills I have acquired thus far to work for either the US Forest Service as a rangeland management specialist or the Bureau of Land Management in their Wild Horse and Burro Program.” Ms. Profy has been the 2018-19 President of the Tierra Seca Student Club, and will enter her second Undergraduate Range Management Exam competition this year at the annual meeting of the Society for Range Management in Minneapolis, MN.
Justin Johnson, former student at the University of Arizona, received the S. Clark Martin Memorial Scholarship for the highest score among the Arizona Section students competing in the contest at the annual meeting of the Society for Range Management in Sparks, NV at the end of January 2018. As a first time contestant, he scored seventh out of 200 contestants from the US, Canada, and Mexico. The UA team as a whole placed fourth among 25 schools in the contest. Mr. Johnson graduated in May 2018 with a BS in Natural Resources with an emphasis in Ecology, Management, and Restoration of Rangelands. In August 2018, he started an M.S. program in Ecohydrology and Watershed management in the School of Natural Resources and the Environment, University of Arizona. Mr. John received a $300 check from the Arizona Section of the Society for Range Management for his outstanding accomplishment.
Two additional scholarships were for University of Arizon students.William Gray was selected by the University of Arizona faculty to receive $900 for the Marcelle E. Schmutz Memorial Scholarship given in memory of Erv Schmutz’s father. Erv was a longtime faculty member in Range Management at University of Arizona. Mr. Gray spent most of his life in Florence, AZ. He is the first in his family to attend college, and as such, he is a senior at the University of Arizona majoring in Natural Resources and the Environment with an emphasis in Ecology, Management, and Restoration of Rangelands. He is the first in his family to attend college. He chose that degree “because of how all aspects of ecosystems were brought together in the range program”, and he “especially loved the botanical aspect, and became inspired by a botany class taught by Dr. Steve Smith and a rangeland plant communities class taught by Dr. Mitch McClaran.” He is the Treasurer in Tierra Seca Club and a participant on the Plant ID and URME teams. In the future, he would like to be a botanist with the Forest Service.
Cameron Burleson was selected by the University of Arizona faculty to receive the $2,000 Habgood Scholarship in Rangeland Management. The Habgood Family established the scholarship in 2016 to provide financial support to an undergraduate student currently enrolled in the rangeland management program at the University of Arizona. They were particularly interested in supporting a student who is dedicated to the management of rangelands, and has the character and perseverance to continue their career in rangeland management. Ms. Burleson was raised with two sisters in Sonoita, AZ. Her family has solid ties with ranching and agriculture, growing up around cattle, horses, and all things outdoors. Her grandfather, Wayne Pruett, owned and managed numerous ranches across Arizona, New Mexico, Oregon, and Idaho. He was an active member in the Society for Range Management, and Ms. Burleson is proud to continue his legacy. Like him, she is passionate about rangelands and maintaining their health and function. She has always been interested in our natural world and learning about better ways to conserve it, and she “could not have found a better fit in the Ecology, Management, and Restoration of Rangelands program”. She hopes to pursue a career with a federal agency as a Rangeland Management Specialist, but anything that allows me to contribute to their improvement will make me happy. Ms. Burleson is an active participant in the Tierra Seca Club, and is a member of the URME and Plant ID teams.