International Scholarship Program

Scholarship Program 2018 participants and SCGIS donated laptops


Our Global Scholarship Program is designed to allow conservation GIS practitioners to attend the Esri User Conference and SCGIS Annual Conference, traditionally held in California every summer and to allow them to take specialized three-week GIS courses organized for the scholarship recipients before the conferences.  These courses are provided jointly by SCGIS, Juniper GIS, Esri, and UC Davis Information Center for the Environment.

This is not a typical scholarship program. It covers only some of the costs affiliated with the travel to and attendance at these events; only on rare occasions are we able to provide awards that cover full costs. 

The Global Scholarship Program currently targets its support primarily at the regions where SCGIS international chapters and informal conservation GIS communities affiliated with SCGIS are growing or emerging, in an effort to promote further growth of these chapters and communities.  However, we encourage our international chapters to extend their outreach beyond their formal country borders, and to embrace colleagues from neighbor regions or even from far away.  Browse the international chapters to learn more about the chapter nearest to your area.

GLOBAL SCHOLARS:  Each year the global scholars represent the best of the best of conservationists using geography and GIS to pursue effective science, educate and change local communities, and discover new ways of protecting species.  

TRAIN THE TRAINER TEACHERS (TTT): These are prior scholars who were selected for advanced training to become certified SCGIS Instructors. They assist the scholarship program with instruction and work to expand GIS capacity in their local region.

2021 Scholarship Program

2021 Program Leadership

  • Karen Beardsley, University of California Davis, United States (Program Lead & TTT Master Trainer)
  • Mervyn Lotter, MTPA Research Station, South Africa (Program Lead & TTT Master Trainer)
  • Leslie Backus, United States (Program Lead & TTT Master Trainer)
  • Charles Convis, Esri, United States (Program Lead & Technology Coordinator)
  • John Schaeffer, Juniper GIS, United States (Program Lead & TTT Founder)
  • M Abdullah "Diyan" Abu Diyan, Bangladesh/Australia, (Program Lead & TTT Master Trainer)
  • Dr. Carlos "Carlitos" DeAngelo, Subtropical Biology Institute, Argentina (Program Lead & TTT Master Trainer)
  • Miriam Schmidts, Esri, United States (Trainer)
  • Canserina "Rina" Kurnia, Esri, United States (Trainer)

2021 Global Scholars

  • Fumika Azuma, Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology, Japan
  • Dr. Ana Garcia Cegarra, Marine Fauna Research and Whale-watching Center, Chile
  • Paul Mjema, The Jane Goodall Institute, Tanzania
  • Marsha Small, Montana State University, United States
  • Fabrice Yengong Lamfu, Greenpeace, Cameroon
  • Taipuni Ruakere, Te Kaahui o Taranaki Trust, New Zealand
  • Bijayata Rai, Royal Society for Protection of Nature, Bhutan
  • Induja Gandhiprasad, Auroville Planning & Development Group, India
  • Francis Gabriela Ordóñez-Bermúdes, Wildlife Conservation Society, Ecuador
  • Azalea Kamellia Abdullah, World Wildlife Fund, Malaysia
  • Andriy Novikov, State Museum of Natural History of the National Academy of Sciences, Ukraine
  • Anastacia Makati, Okavanga Research Institute and University of Botswana, Botswana

2021 Honors Recipients

  • Cynthia Mapendere, University of Pretoria, Zimbabwe/South Africa
  • Daša Donša, The Faculty of Natural Science and Mathematics, Slovenia

The 2020 Scholar Program was postponed until 2021 due to circumstances of the global pandemic. Training for this cohort has pivoted to accommodate these unforeseen events and is being held virtually for the first time ever in the summer of 2021. 

Click here to learn more about this year's participants!


Past Participants

2019 Train the Trainers

2018 Global Scholars

2017 Global Scholars