MEM/JD '00, Resource Ecology
Alumni Council Fellows
Each year, the Alumni Council awards fellowships to continuing professional degree students (first year and/or concurrent degree) who demonstrate exemplary leadership, career and professional development preparation, and character. On behalf of the Alumni Council, The Office of Development and Alumni Relations (ODAR) awards fellowships in the amount of $7,500 to each fellowship recipient.
The Alumni Council Fellows help to connect Nicholas School students and alumni in meaningful ways – most notably with their work on the Alumni-Student Mentorship Program.
Eligibility & Selection Process
- Applicants must be enrolled at the Nicholas School pursuing a professional degree as a continuing first year and/or concurrent degree student.
- Applicants must be in good academic standing.
- Past Alumni Council Fellowship award recipients are not eligible.
- All continuing students are notified by email of the open application period in January of each year.
- Applications are reviewed by the award committee after the application deadline. The award committee is comprised of Nicholas School alumni, staff, students, and Alumni Council members.
- Once applications have been reviewed, students (at the discretion of the award committee) are selected for interviews to determine fellowship awardees.
- As applicable, students are notified of their status during each stage of the selection process.
Current Alumni Council Fellows
Meilin Chan MEM'23
Meilin is a Business and Environment student who is interested in the intersection of natural resources and corporate sustainability. Within the Nicholas School, Meilin serves on the DICE (Diverse and Inclusive Community for the Environment) leadership board and works with Dr. Nicki Cagle on CAIRNS, a mentorship program for underrepresented undergraduate students in the sustainability and environmental fields. Meilin currently works with Calyx Global on their forest carbon offset risk assessment team. Before coming to Duke, Meilin studied ecology at Boston University (Go Terriers!) and spent 2 hours every week walking backwards while giving prospective students tours of campus. In her free time, you can find Meilin baking sourdough and banana bread, walking around the Duke pond, and patiently waiting for Min Jin Lee to release her next book
Michelle carter MEM'23
Michelle Carter is a Master of Environmental Management student in the Ecosystem Science and Conservation concentration. Before enrolling at Duke, Michelle earned her dual B.S. in biology and geology from UCLA in 2020 and completed her Master of Science in Law with a specialization in environmental law and regulation at Northwestern University’s Pritzker School of Law in 2021. She has also worked in a molecular biology lab in Hong Kong and for an agricultural advocacy group in Washington, DC. At Duke, she has represented the Nicholas School in Duke’s Graduate and Professional Student Government, is an active member of Duke Conservation Society and Duke Environmental Justice Network, and is a Science and Policy Editor on the Duke Environmental Law and Policy Forum. Michelle’s interests lie primarily in constitutional environmental rights and land conservation, and she plans to work for a non-profit after graduation.
Andrea kolarova MEM/mf'23
Andrea is a first-year Master of Forestry and Master of Environmental Management student specializing in Ecosystem Science and Conservation while pursuing a certificate in Geospatial Analysis. Prior to beginning her coursework, Andrea volunteered with AmeriCorps conservation crews across several states, from West Virginia’s New River Gorge to Arizona’s Grand Canyon. During her term of service, she constructed trails, restored threatened habitat, and learned stone masonry. At Duke, Andrea is the President of the Society of American Foresters, where her goal is to create a sense of community between forestry students and to engage with local professionals and alumni. Additionally, she is the student manager at Outdoor Adventures, where she teaches climbing classes, organizes trips, and co-leads the Women+ Outdoor Adventure program. Andrea graduated from Duke in 2020 with a B.S. in Environmental Sciences and a certificate in Sustainability Engagement. A Blue Devil through and through, Andrea is eager to give back to the Nicholas School and to facilitate student-alumni connections.
Lucas Morgenstern MEM‘23
Lucas Morgenstern is currently pursuing a Master of Environmental Management degree with a concentration in Ecosystem Science and Conservation. Lucas is a board member of the Duke Conservation Society and has worked as a research assistant at the Tropical Ecology Lab, led by Dr. John Poulsen. Lucas also works at Duke’s Outdoor Adventures center as a rock-climbing wall monitor. His interests include wildlife conservation and its intersection with community-based management. Prior to enrolling at the Nicholas School, Lucas worked as a consultant in forensic integrity services at EY, and in other multinational companies such as HSBC and IBM. He received his Bachelor in Business Management from Universidade Federal do Parana (Brazil) in 2019. In his free time, Lucas enjoys playing sports and hiking in the Duke Forest.
Ishani Palandurkar MEM‘23
Ishani Palandurkar is a second-year Master of Environmental Management student specializing in Environmental Economics and Policy. Ishani is an international student from India and is pursuing Masters’s Project in identifying Nature-Based Solutions for flood risk reduction in the Hindu Kush Himalayas. At Duke, She is the Secretary of the Nicholas School Student Council (NSSC) and a Board Member at Diverse & Inclusive Community for the Environment (DICE). She has also received the Honorable Mention at Duke International Leadership Award. In March 2022, Ishani was selected as one of the 150 participants to join the 2041 ClimateForce Antarctic Expedition. Before joining Nicholas School, Ishani has worked in the space of policy research and project management on air pollution, energy access, disaster risk reduction, and sustainable livelihoods in India. She is interested in pursuing a career in climate policy and development economics.
Former Alumni Council Fellows
Hui Chien Tan
Jessica (Jess) Siegel
Leslie Cakey Worthington
John Paul Miller
Terah Elizabeth Donovan