The Edgar Veillon Conservation Leadership Corps (CLC) program is designed to inform and engage with college students about conservation policy and advocacy so that we may foster tomorrow’s conservation leaders in Louisiana. The program allows students to broaden their knowledge of conservation and affords each participant the opportunity to meet and interact with conservation professionals from government agencies, nonprofits, and academia.
In this fifth year of the program, LWF recruited and selected college students from across the state. The following students successfully completed the program: Caroline Alleman, Leor Weber, William Woody, Caleb Theriot, Leila Avery, Ella Bollinger, Libby Brennan, Heather Brown, McKenna Chow, Elena Dilworth, Jana Guercio, Siarah Hall, Kaitlyn Johnson, Julia Jones, James Kelly, Rowan Lambert, and Samantha Rios.
Four sessions were held from January-April 2023. Each session included a meeting on Friday and a full day of meetings each Saturday. Sessions 2 and 4 were held on zoom. Session 1 took place at the LSU campus in Baton Rouge and Session 3 was hosted at Chicot State Park in Ville Platte.
This year, the students heard from 13 speakers from the following organizations, agencies, and institutions: Louisiana Coastal Protection & Restoration Authority (CPRA), Louisiana Wildlife Federation, Louisiana SeaGrant, The Water Institute, Pontchartrain Conservancy, National Audubon Society, U.S. Geological Survey, Chicot State Park, USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service, and Kisatchie National Forest. Past EV-CLC students provided updates on their experiences and how it has benefited them.
Students were eager to stay connected to our presenters, one another, and LWF. We continue to share engagement opportunities such as participating in public meetings, contacting decision-makers on conservation issues (which some students have already done), as well as other opportunities for their professional and personal development related to conservation.
LWF provided a $200 scholarship check to each student along with a certificate of achievement and letter of commendation for successfully completing the program.
Thanks to the Stuller Family Foundation for its continued support of this program. In addition, LWF thanks our Conservation Education Committee for their volunteer time and guidance as well as all of the guest speakers for sharing their expertise.