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ESF Career Fellowships

Page Contents

  • Overview and Eligibility
  • Amount of Support
  • Application Tracks and How to Apply
  • Program and Application Timeline
  • Final Reports and Additional Commitments
  • Past Recipients of ESF Career Fellowships

The Office of Career Services is excited to be able to offer annual ESF Career Fellowships to students as part of the Betsy and Jesse Fink Career Development Program. We strongly encourage you to learn about Fellowship opportunities, review examples of what past selected recipients have used Fellowship funding for, and to submit an application this upcoming year. You can learn more about the ESF Career Fellowships online, at monthly information sessions (see Application Timeline below), and through meeting with a Career Advisor.


The ESF Career Fellowships are intended to promote the career and professional development of students at the State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry. These Fellowships are made possible by the generous donations of alumni and supporters of the college, who are committed to solving environmental challenges, and supporting students who strive to do the same.

The ESF Career Fellowships support internships and independent exploration for undergraduate and graduate students. ESF Career Fellows are exceptional students who seek to pursue experiences that can truly shape their development. With the help of the ESF Career Fellowships, the chance to pursue career dreams can become a reality.

Fellowship applicants must demonstrate:

  • Dedication to the environment and their field of study;
  • Passion and enthusiasm for their proposed experience;
  • Demonstrated promise in pursuing their career goals; and
  • Ability to plan and follow through with a professional experience.

Applicants must provide evidence of their exceptional engagement in their field of study, as well as their intention to pursue a career in it.

For the 2021 cycle, there are two important changes to note. One, we will only be considering experiences in New York State and states contiguous to NYS. As progress is made with regard to COVID-19, we hope to reintroduce funding for extended domestic and international experiences. Second, we will be considering remote/virtual opportunities. These experiences must still be in alignment with the mission of the Career Fellowships.

ESF Career Fellowships Information Session Presentation


The ESF Career Fellowships provide financial support to undergraduate and graduate students who have completed at least one full semester at ESF. Students must be full-time, in good standing with the College, and be returning to campus for at least one semester following the experience.

Amount of Support

The ESF Career Fellowships process provides funding to students based on merit and identified need. Support will vary depending on the experience proposed. Awards can range, but typically cap at $6,000.

Fellowships to be Awarded in 2021
We are excited to offer the following Fellowship opportunities this year:

  • Cotton Fellowship
  • Fink Fellowship
  • Robert M. Sand '50 Internship Fund

Multiple awards are given as a part of each Fellowship. It is also possible that additional Fellowships may be added to the process depending on time of the donation. Students submit one application per experience to appropriate category to be considered for all available Fellowships in that year.


Application Tracks and How to Apply

Which Fellowship application is right for you? Read below to learn more about the two application options to decide which your experience aligns best with. You can always meet with a Career Advisor to further discuss your ideas and seek recommendation on which application would be best to use. Examples of previously funded experiences can be found after the application timeline below.



The internship application is used to provide an hourly payment for students wishing to complete an unpaid internship in collaboration with a host organization. Students work directly with host sites to determine when the internship will be completed and what will be done during that time frame.

Complete the ESF Career Fellowships Internship Application and submit along with two letters of support (one from Faculty Member - typically the Faculty Sponsor - and one from the Internship Host Site Supervisor). Letters of support can be sent via e-mail to careers@esf.edu or delivered to the Office of Career Services (105 Bray Hall).



Independent Exploration

The Independent Exploration application is used to supply financial assistance for students looking to create or complete an independent or group project. This application is broad by nature to encompass entrepreneurial endeavors, multi-disciplinary group competitions, professional development workshops, student experiences that are not internships, and more.

Complete the ESF Career Fellowships Independent Exploration Application and submit along with one letter of support from a Faculty Member/Mentor,). Letters of support can be sent via e-mail to careers@esf.edu or delivered to the Office of Career Services (105 Bray Hall).

Program and Application Timeline

Date Time and Location
Tuesday, February 16, 2021 Virtual Information Session from 11 am - 12 pm
Wednesday, March 3, 2021 Virtual Information Session from 4 - 5 pm
Friday, March 22, 2021 ESF Career Fellowships Applications due to the Career Services Office, 105 Bray Hall or via e-mail to careers@esf.edu)
March 2021 ESF Career Fellowships Committee will convene to review applications and make student selections
April 2021 ESF Career Fellowships recipients will be notified of their selection
Friday, September 17, 2021 Final reports due from 2021 ESF Career Fellowships recipients (submitted as Microsoft Word docs via e-mail to careers@esf.edu)
Mid-April 2022 ESF Career Fellowships recipients for summer 2021 will be invited to the Annual Scholarship Appreciation Luncheon hosted by the [ESF] College Foundation


Final Reports and Additional Commitments

ESF Career Fellows must submit a digital copy (MS word document) of a final report to the Office of Career Services following the internship, project, or conference. A lengthy final report is unnecessary; generally 3-5 pages is sufficient. Pictures, videos, blogs, and other forms of media of produced during the experience will also requested.

Returning Fellows will also be asked to serve as representatives at on-campus events and at future Information Sessions depending on their schedule and availability.

Past Recipients of ESF Career Fellowships