Nicholas School Chartered Groups

Nicholas School Student Council (NSSC)

The Nicholas School Student Council (NSSC) of the Nicholas School of the Environment is an advocate on behalf of professional students, representing the interests and concerns of these students to the Duke University and Nicholas School community.

The NSSC is a group of elected and volunteer-appointed Masters of Environmental Management (MEM) and Masters of Forestry (MF) students that serves as an advisory body to the faculty and administration, and provides a conduit between the student body, faculty, and administration.

Through the NSSC, professional students address with faculty and administration issues that include, but are not limited to, academic programs and curricula, courses, professional development, and long-range goals of the school. Through the service of its officers and representatives, NSSC aims to improve the quality of student life at the Nicholas School.

The main purposes of NSSC are:

  • To facilitate communication between Nicholas School professional students, faculty, and administration.
  • To represent the interests and concerns of Nicholas School professional students to the Duke University community.
  • To improve the quality of student life at the Nicholas School.


Nicholas PhD Advocacy Council (NPAC)

The Nicholas PhD Advocacy Council (NPAC) is a group composed of peer-elected students from the Nicholas School-affiliated PhD programs (ENV, UPE, UPEP, MSC, TOX, EOS) which aims to represent and support the academic and professional interests of all Nicholas School-affiliated PhD students, while fostering a sense of community within the Nicholas School.

NPAC aims to:

  • Strengthen professional and social relationships among students in Nicholas School-affiliated PhD programs (e.g. through professional development activities such as the Graduate Afternoon Seminar).
  • Advocate for the academic and professional interests of Nicholas School-affiliated PhD students.
  • Provide support to program administrators for PhD student needs (e.g. Nicholas School PhD student orientation).
  • Provide representation for Nicholas School-affiliated PhD students to other administrative and advocacy groups (e.g. Nicholas School faculty meetings, Duke Graduate and Professional Student Council).



Nicholas School Professional Groups

Coding for the Environment

The Coding for the Environment group is dedicated to furthering student knowledge and expertise in data sciences and coding applications for environmental science, economics, energy, and other related topics. The goal of our club is to 1) provide coding workshops, 2) support students in their coursework by holding open hours to ask coding-related questions and 3) bring in speakers who use coding and data sciences for their work in the environmental field. No prior knowledge of coding, modeling, or data science is necessary to join the group, just enthusiasm for learning about data-driven methods.

Duke Conservation Society (DCS)

Duke Conservation Society logo

The Duke Conservation Society (DCS) is a student group focusing on contemporary conservation issues and solutions. We cover a variety of fields and explore multiple forms of conservation including wildlife, land trusts, market-based, community-based, and policy-based among others. Our vision is to provide a resource for students and future conservationists in finding solutions to our natural world’s most pressing problems.


  • Enhance students’ understanding of the various scientific, political, economic and managerial tools available to address conservation issues
  • Facilitate collaborations between undergraduates, MEM & PhD students of the Nicholas school on conservation related projects and analysis
  • Provide opportunities for professional development in terms networking with professionals, seminars and talks from guest speakers and career resources and advice.



Duke Environment Law and Policy Forum (DELPF)

Duke Environmental Law & Policy Forum (DELPF) is a student-run publication, with staff members from the Law School, the Nicholas School for the Environment, and the Sanford School of Public Policy. New journal members, both JD and non-JD, are selected based upon their writing skills, research ability, and interest in both DELPF and environmental policy.

The Duke Environmental Law & Policy Forum began in 1991 as an interdisciplinary magazine published annually. Since then, the Forum has grown into a traditional environmental law journal. 

DELPF has retained its interdisciplinary roots and presents scholarship that examines environmental issues by drawing on legal, scientific, economic, and public policy resources. DELPF’s affiliations with the Nicholas School for the Environment, the Sanford School of Public Policy, and the Law School render it uniquely positioned to adapt to the increasingly interdisciplinary nature of environmental law.



Duke Sustainability Board (DSB)

Duke Sustainability Board logo

The Duke Sustainability Board (DSB), housed in the Nicholas School of the Environment, promotes awareness of sustainability initiatives and complex environmental issues. We are an organization uniquely positioned to facilitate communication among all clubs in the Nicholas School, because we can connect students from various disciplines through a common appreciation of sustainable development. 

We seek to provide opportunities for graduate students to learn about environmental trends and how they can reduce their personal impacts. Our mission is to increase knowledge of sustainability efforts, support collaboration between student clubs, and connect students to professionals working across diverse fields. 

DSB partners with Sustainable Duke to host annual summits about relevant environmental/sustainability topics that interest students throughout the Duke community. These summits aim to gather people of various backgrounds together to discuss problems and how they can each influence the solutions. DSB also sponsors various events throughout the year to engage students in sustainability initiatives, and it partners with student groups to reduce environmental impacts from events.



Duke University Environmental Justice Network (DUEJN)

The Duke University Environmental Justice Network (DUEJN) seeks to connect graduate and professional students committed to understanding and addressing environmental injustices. By nature, environmental injustices are multi-faceted, and addressing them requires a similarly interdisciplinary approach. Our mission is to represent a diverse range of expertise and form a cross-cutting network to bridge the gaps between different schools and disciplines.

DUEJN is currently comprised of three working groups focused on outreach to local groups, engaging with NSOE leadership, and education and events. In the past, we have hosted local community members and EJ scholars as speakers, cohosted an Environmental Justice panel in the Water Sector symposium, convened an environmental justice book club as well as a podcast discussion, and screened the film Right to Harm with a panel of community members who were featured in the film. Additionally, we aim to send interested students to the North Carolina Environmental Justice Network Summit during years it is hosted as well as other EJ-focused conferences in order to provide an opportunity for engagement with EJ leaders across North Carolina and the United States. 

Duke Water Network (DWN)

Duke Water Network is a student organization dedicated to connecting Duke students interested in water with each other, community members, and professionals in the fields of water management, science, policy, and business. DWN may organize employer and alumni networking events, trips to explore innovative water management approaches, talks and panels, and other events that fulfill its mission. 

DWN also has the potential to serve as a recruitment tool for water-related organizations. DWN was formed in 2013 as a forum for Duke students interested in water resources to network across concentrations, departments and with water professionals. Since then, as the interest of the student body in water management at the Nicholas School has grown, so has our organization.

We host events and trips that have allowed students to learn from professionals about potential career paths and about real world trends and innovations in water resources management. We also have strengthened educational opportunities for water resources students by facilitating program seminar discussions and faculty-student interactions in non-class settings.

Our group has taken a dynamic approach to our events, adjusting each year to the interests of our members and collaborating with many other student groups from the Nicholas School as well as Fuqua, Sanford, and the Law School.



Environmental Communication, Outreach, and Education (ECOE)

The mission of Environmental Communication, Outreach, and Education (ECOE) is to "To serve as a catalyst and resource for Duke students to grow as environmental educators, science communicators, and volunteers in their community while prioritizing equity, diversity, and inclusion in the field." We do this through professional development and networking events as well as resource sharing, such as connecting students with jobs, service opportunities, and relevant media. 

Eno Literary Magazine (ENO)

ENO's mission is to encourage, promote, and publish artistic forms of expression that inspire a deeper understanding and appreciation for the environment. We aim to inspire artists to create work celebrating nature and to encourage consumers to reflect and act in service of the environment. Eno serves as a lighthouse for intellectual and artistic creativity on behalf of the Nicholas School and Duke University. 



Green Roof and Orchard Workforce (GROW)

GROW is an inclusive, member-driven organization within NSOE. The purposes of our group are to:

  • Promote awareness and understanding of the functions and benefits of building-integrated green space.
  • Facilitate the proper and productive use of the Nicholas School’s green roof and orchard for communal enjoyment and benefit.
  • Support the Nicholas School’s spirit of community outreach and education.
  • Promote community development and build social capital through shared stewardship and events. 

We have a clearly visible impact on the physical environment Nicholas School by helping to manage communal green-spaces. Our events also foster community within NSOE by offering students, staff, and faculty the opportunity to socialize and engage with individuals that they might otherwise connect with. While we are primarily a social organization, most of the participants in our activities come away with some new knowledge or experience about gardening and/or collective action. We believe that engaging in the maintenance of our building-integrated green spaces provides a dual benefit to participants' personal and professional development.



Nicholas School Energy Club (NSEC)

Nicholas School Energy Club logo

The Nicholas School Energy Club’s mission is to educate Nicholas School students and the broader Duke community about energy issues and provide professional development opportunities in energy through networking events, field trips, socials and conferences. We coordinate our activities with the Duke University Energy Initiative and our partner energy clubs at the Fuqua School of Business, Sanford School of Public Policy, and Duke Law School. The Club serves as a professional development home base for Nicholas School students interested in energy.





The Oceans@Duke Student Club fosters collaboration among its interdisciplinary members to examine opportunities for professional development in oceans-related careers and areas of study. Our members tend to have a common fascination with all things “blue” whether it be fisheries management or offshore wind–or both! Here, students engage with Duke University’s leading experts in oceans’ science, governance and business. Club members include students across graduate schools at Duke University: the Nicholas School of the Environment, Fuqua School of Business, Pratt School of Engineering, Duke School of Law, Sanford School of Public Policy, the Duke Divinity School, and Duke School of Medicine. The club is led by the Student Cabinet that plans and executes the Blue Economy Summit and other opportunities for “blue”-interested scholars to gather. 



Ocean Policy Working Group (OPWG)

Ocean Policy Working Group logo

The Ocean Policy Working Group (OPWG) is a graduate student organization that focuses on the political, economic, and cultural dimensions of human interactions with the ocean. The group brings together graduate and professional students from a variety of disciplinary backgrounds to consider the ways in which our areas of study influence our perceptions of the ocean. Although the majority of Ocean Policy Working Group members are Nicholas School students, the interdepartmental nature of the group has enabled students to consider environmental challenges from alternative perspectives.

The OPWG aims to facilitate cross-disciplinary discussions and collaborations that explore the political, economic, scientific and cultural dimensions of human interactions with the ocean. Our activities examine current issues involving the global oceans and the impact of these issues on marine policy and ocean governance. We strive to relate to an audience beyond those that directly study the coast. In addition, our publication, Upwelling, is a great way for members, faculty, and alumni to showcase their policy work with the greater Duke community. 

The Ocean Policy Working Group is currently sponsored by the Nicholas School of the Environmental and the Duke University Center for International & Global Studies (DUCIGS).



Student Association for Geospatial Analysis (SAGA)

Student Association for Geospatial Analysis logo

The Student Association for Geospatial Analysis (SAGA) is graduate student organization for students interested in developing and sharing skills related to geospatial analysis (GA). The mission of SAGA is to provide the graduate students of Duke University with a resource to expand, explore, and build professional skills in the field of Geospatial Analysis. The term geospatial analysis is all encompassing, from Geographic Information Systems (GIS) to remote sensing; from cartography to field skills. SAGA will serve as an organization to inform students about emerging trends and techniques, as well as to develop skills not taught through Nicholas School curriculum.

SAGA aims to connect students not only with their peers but also with alumni working in this field. SAGA will serve as a liaison and advocator to the Nicholas School staff and administration. SAGA seeks to accomplish this mission by developing professional skills through seminars, symposia, and speaking events by cultivating professional relationships between students, alumni, and faculty through strong connections and inclusiveness.




Nicholas School Social Groups

Diverse & Inclusive Community for the Environment (DICE)

Diverse and Inclusive Community for the Environment DICE logo

The Diverse & Inclusive Community for the Environment (DICE) aims to:

  • Foster a welcoming community within the Nicholas School so that members of disenfranchised groups/communities will feel that they belong here. This means bridging gaps between peoples of various identities by both acknowledging our differences and also learning to recognize shared interests and experiences.
  • Empower members of disenfranchised groups/communities to join the Nicholas School community. This means working with the Nicholas School administration and staff to increase the recruitment rates for students of different races, cultures, gender & sexual identities, levels of ability/disability, socioeconomic classes, countries of origin, religions, ethnicities, etc.
  • Facilitate and encourage deeper discussion through readings, current events, movie screenings, weekly meetings, etc.



Nic Queer Network (NQN)

The purpose of Nicholas Queer Network is to:

  • Represent the needs and concerns of students, staff, faculty, and other Nicholas School community members who identify as LGBTQIA+ or allies;
  • Connect students, faculty, and staff within the LGBTQIA+ community to discuss and raise awareness about the challenges and issues facing queer individuals in our immediate community and the broader environmental field;
  • Educate our community and others about such challenges and work towards forward progress to solve these issues; (iv) provide opportunities for LGBTQIA+ individuals and allies to support one another through social gatherings and educational programming; and
  • Foster an accepting and tolerant atmosphere within the Nicholas School in support of LGBTQIA+ students, faculty, and staff and those individuals who might be working to come to terms with their queer identity.



Angela Gamber

Cate Jaffe

Akash Gulati

Cristiana Falvo

Sustainable Oceans Alliance (SOA)

Sustainable Oceans Alliance logo

The Duke University chapter of the Sustainable Oceans Alliance strives to equip students who have a passion for ocean conservation with the tools to help make a change. Duke SOA aims to enhance the university’s ability to support the needs and interests of students who intend to pursue marine science and conservation, both educationally and professionally.

We hope to provide a forum for Duke students interested in marine science and conservation. We intend to educate the Duke community about opportunities in the marine sciences available at Duke and the Duke Marine Lab and facilitate the logistics for studying at DUML. We are recognized by the Nicholas School of the Environment, Duke Marine Lab, and the Sustainable Oceans Alliance.


Nicholas School's Black & Latino Club (BLC)

Nicholas Black and Latino Club logo

We are a social student group providing a space to celebrate and educate the Nicholas School community on Black and Latino culture. Additionally, we are an organization that plans to serve the needs, not only of Black and Latino students, but also those of any student, faculty, or staff that wishes to engage in meaningful activities that build cultural, academic, and environmental awareness.


Nicholas School Naturalists (NicNats)

The Nicholas School Naturalists (Nic Nats) is a natural history and outdoors club within the Nicholas School of Environment. Our outdoor trips, which include hiking, backpacking, climbing, rafting, canoeing, birding, scuba diving, and more, are open to any graduate students within the Nicholas School.

The events range from local (around the Triangle) to visiting further away places in North Carolina and the surrounding Southeastern States.



Duke Affiliate Societies, Chapters, Clubs & Initiatives

Duke Chapter of American Fisheries Society (DukeFish)

Duke Fish logo

DukeFish is a graduate student sub-unit of the American Fisheries Society at Duke University. Our mission is to promote sustainable fisheries and consumer practices by reaching out to our peers, community members, and local industries through education, outreach, and community participation. We strive to highlight fisheries research at Duke and beyond through hosting career panels, lectures, and other events for students in the Duke Community. We belong to the Tidewater Chapter of the American Fisheries Society and aim to facilitate active student participation in regional chapter meetings. 



Duke Graduate Climate Coalition (DGCC)

Duke Graduate Climate Coalition (DGCC) is the graduate student branch of Duke Climate Coalition (DCC). The mission of DGCC is to expand the reach of climate, energy, and environmental advocacy to the sizable graduate student population of Duke University, spreading awareness about environmental issues and mobilizing Duke Graduate students to support climate progress at Duke, in the Durham community, and at the national scale.

Members of DGCC lend their expertise and experience to DGCC’s campaigns, which are centered around informed, policy-based advocacy and dialogue as well as grassroots activism. DGCC members also serve as mentors to undergraduate members of Duke Climate Coalition, developing their leadership and policy skills.

Overall, DGCC seeks to energize the Duke graduate student community on climate, energy, and environmental issues, directly engaging graduate and professional students in dialogue and activism across all of Duke’s subsidiary schools.


Duke International Society of Tropical Foresters (ISTF)

Duke International Society of Tropical Foresters (ISTF) aims to facilitate cross-disciplinary discussions and collaborations that explore tropical forest science, protection, conservation, management, and policy. In addition, we intend to serve as a resource for career & professional development, networking, and research & information sharing related to tropical forestry, sustainable land use, and natural resource management in tropical regions.

Duke ISTF is open to Duke undergraduates, graduates, PhDs, faculty, and staff.

Duke Society of American Foresters (SAF)

Society of American Foresters logo

Founded in 1900 by Gifford Pinchot, the Society of American Foresters (SAF) is the national scientific and educational organization representing the forestry profession in the U.S. SAF’s mission is to:

  • Advance the science, education, technology, and practice of forestry
  • Enhance the competency of its members
  • Establish professional excellence
  • Use the knowledge, skills, and conservation ethic of the profession to ensure the continued health and use of forest ecosystems. 

The Duke University Student SAF Chapter is a professional organization that facilitates student involvement in forestry at the local, regional and national levels by promoting the forestry program at the Nicholas School, sustaining Duke's relationship with other forestry schools, organizing both educational and community service events, and facilitating student attendance at SAF national conferences and meetings.



Duke Society for Ecological Restoration Student Association (DSER)

The Duke Society for Ecological Restoration Student Association (DSER) aims to increase student knowledge and experience of restoration and increase the emphasis on restoration across the broader Duke community. Our planned events include field trips to local restoration sites, work days, career panels, and casual opportunities to get to know each other. As a chapter of the Society for Ecological Restoration, membership provides access to a network of restoration professionals, resources, and discounts for conferences. Ecological restoration is a multidisciplinary field that links not only ecology and conservation but environmental policy, climate change, community engagement, ecotoxicology, and more. 

Duke Student Association of Wetland Scientists (SAWS)

The Duke Student Association of Wetland Scientists (Duke SAWS) is a student-run organization dedicated to wetland ecology, restoration, and conservation at Duke University. The goal is to provide a meeting ground for graduate and non-graduate students interested in all aspects of wetlands. Activities include field trips, seminars, and volunteer events. The club is working in coordination with the Duke University Wetlands Center.




Duke MEM-MBA Club logo

The MEM/MBA Club is the home for concurrent MEM/MBA students and provides the key link between the Nicholas School, the Fuqua School of Business, and Kenan-Flagler Business School at the University of North Carolina. The Club’s mission is to:

  • To support students’ academic transition between two graduate programs, facilitate social cohesion, and encourage professional development through Duke’s unique hybrid education.
  • To connect past, present, and future students who are committed to bridging the gap between traditional business management and environmental/social issues.
  • To foster the internal and external MEM/MBA community;
  • To grow the MEM/MBA program within Duke and externally through increased visibility and outreach to the Nicholas School of the Environment, The Fuqua School of Business, and the UNC Kenan-Flagler Business School, while actively working with school administrations to streamline MEM/MBA academics and administrative processes;

To meet these objectives, the MEM/MBA Club brings students together across all three classes and all three schools through career and academic events.


Nic Net Impact Chapter

Net Impact Nicholas School student group logo

The Nic Net Impact Chapter is a networking and professional development club that connects Nicholas School students with environmental professionals in the private sector and provides access to resources for further business-related education. The club provides Nicholas School students with an outlet to access environmental opportunities within the world of business and expand their knowledge and skills related to the field.

The Nic Net Impact Chapter allows environmental/sustainability professionals in the field the opportunity to learn more about the MEM program and provide mutually beneficial networking opportunities for both Nicholas School students and environmental professionals. Our club is directly aligned with the goals of the Nicholas School administration in terms of placing more MEMs in private sector jobs.

The Nic Net Impact Chapter provides the additional training and resources that help prepare MEM graduates to be successful in corporate careers, while differentiating them from MBA students. To fulfill this mission, the Nic Net Impact Chapter will remain committed to providing its members with an array of opportunities that will:

  • Develop and strengthen the skills, instincts, abilities, and resources of environmental management students to become leaders in the sustainability field and influence change.
  • Grow the professional network of Nicholas School of the Environment students by engaging with committed practitioners in the sustainability field with an emphasis on Nicholas School alumni.
  • Increase awareness of Nic Net Impact’s role in various organizational structures including nonprofits, government agencies, and private businesses.



Rosanne Lam

Samantha Burch

Out in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (oSTEM)

oSTEM at Duke logo

Duke University’s Chapter of Out in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (oSTEM) is an LGBTQ+ – affirming organization that aims to provide services and support for students in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics and to create a dynamic network between students and professionals in industry and academia.


The Coastal Society (TCS)

Duke Coastal Society logo

The Coastal Society (TCS) is a national organization of private sector, academic, and government professionals and students. It is dedicated to actively addressing emerging coastal issues by fostering dialogue, forging partnerships, and promoting communications and education. The Duke University Student Chapter of TCS seeks to fulfill this mission of coastal stewardship through communications, activities, and professional networking options for Duke students. Events and opportunities include: hosting an annual Margaret A. Davidson (MAD) Career & Professional Development Workshop, Coastal Connections for student and professionals, International Coastal Clean-up Day with the local community, Earth Week activities, mock interviews with federal agencies like NOAA, hosting the All Swell? Podcast, partnering with local non-profits for habitat restoration projects, and co-hosting events with other student and professional organizations.


Working Group on the Environment in Latin America (WGELA)

Working Group on the Environment in Latin America - WGELA - logo

The Working Group on the Environment in Latin America (WGELA) is a collaborative effort between Duke University, UNC, and NC State undergraduate and graduate students to promote a rich comprehension of environmental issues in Latin America through interdisciplinary collaboration.

WGELA aims to 1) foster a dialogue concerning critical environmental issues affecting Latin America, 2) improve the understanding of the social, historical, political, and cultural contexts in which these environmental issues are embedded, and 3) build capacity among an interdisciplinary and cross institutional group of individuals to address and conduct research on Latin American issues.



Martin Dietz

Amanda Ullman


Related Groups

Environmental Internship Fund

The Environmental Internship Fund (EIF) is an organization that raises money for summer internships. All the money goes directly back to students, with priority being given to those who help raise the funds.


Career and Professional Development Center 


FOREM is the official unofficial social organization of the Nicholas School. It is a social professional organization for all Nicholas School graduate students, faculty and staff. Our purpose is to foster an environment in which students can balance their academic and social lives.



Martin Dietz

Steven Yang


On Hiatus

Nicholas School Partners and Spouses (NicPartners)

**This group is currently on hiatus and is inactive. If you would like to breathe new life into the group, contact Nancy Kelly to learn how.**


This group intends to make students and their Partners feel welcome at the Nicholas School and the Duke community, and soft the transition process to Durham through social networking.

We expect that this group helps NicPartners to create their own community, promote the inclusion and diversity and strength the bond between families and the Nicholas School.


African Environment Initiative (AEI)

**This group is currently on hiatus and is inactive. If you would like to breathe new life into the group, contact Nancy Kelly to learn how.**


African Environment Initiative (AEI) is a student organization with the goal of promoting greater interdisciplinary collaboration among the community of Duke researchers, from both the Nicholas School and other departments, working in Africa.

We seek to act as liaisons between Nicholas School students and the diverse Africa-related programs (Duke Africa Initiative, Department of Evolutionary Anthropology) within Duke University.

We also seek to provide a support network to help students navigate the logistic and cultural challenges of working in Africa. We want to offer practical training that will help students be successful in the field.