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REVISED: UCSC Doris Duke Conservation Scholars Program Director

Position overview

Position title: UCSC Doris Duke Conservation Scholars Program Director
Salary range: $74, 896.
Percent time: Full-time (100%)
Anticipated start: REVISED: September 1, 2023
Position duration: Initial appointment will be for one year, with the possibility of reappointment

Application Window

Open date: March 23, 2023

Most recent review date: Tuesday, Aug 1, 2023 at 11:59pm (Pacific Time)
Applications received after this date will be reviewed by the search committee if the position has not yet been filled.

Final date: Friday, Mar 22, 2024 at 11:59pm (Pacific Time)
Applications will continue to be accepted until this date, but those received after the review date will only be considered if the position has not yet been filled.

Position description

Dr. Erika Zavaleta in the Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at the University of California, Santa Cruz (UCSC) invites applications for the position of Director of the UCSC Doris Duke Conservation Scholars Program. The director will manage all aspects of The Doris Duke Conservation Scholars Program, which recruits and supports undergraduate students from across the U.S., its territories, and associated sovereign tribal nations. The program seeks emerging conservation leaders with passion and transformative potential from diverse racial, ethnic and socioeconomic backgrounds. The program has three key components:

  • Integrative training in leadership, design, communication, collaboration and field conservation science and practice through an annual, intensive summer course and internship placements.
  • Strong mentoring for scholars throughout and beyond the two-year scholarship period, with opportunities to interact and work with leaders in conservation, conservation justice and allied fields.
  • Cultivation of an enduring community among scholars and their mentors, instructors, families, peers and partner organizations.

The Doris Duke Scholars Program is dedicated to enhancing diversity and inclusion, and strongly encourages applications from candidates who will enrich that mission. We are looking for a dynamic, engaged leader to manage this program who shares our strong values around effective and equitable conservation. The director will work with an advisory board of diverse conservation leaders in academia, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), philanthropy, community groups, tribes and government, and a national network of internship sponsors and partners.

The successful candidate will be responsible for the following activities:

  • Lead outreach, recruitment and selection of 20 undergraduate conservation Scholars each year to participate in a two-year program based at UC-Santa Cruz.
  • Work closely with the faculty director and other staff to implement an 8-week annual summer conservation research and leadership course; annual winter retreats; year-round mentoring at Scholars’ home institutions; and group internship placements with NGOs, foundations, agencies, private firms and cross-sector partnerships in conservation.
  • Sustain a strong culture of health, safety, inclusion, equity and excellence across all DDCSP programming.
  • Maintain and build a network of partners, including contributing faculty, advisory board members, speakers and panelists, and other organizations to contribute to the program and support the community of Scholars and program alumni.
  • Mentor current and past participants in the program and sustain strong community and communications among them.
  • Manage program finances, evaluation and reporting.

The hiring unit will not sponsor employment-eligible immigration statuses for this position.

UCSC Doris Duke Conservation Scholars Program:


Basic qualifications (required at time of application)
  • M.A./M.S. degree or higher in conservation-related field (such as conservation science, policy, law or biology) or relevant field; or a bachelor’s degree plus three to five years of professional experience in the aforementioned fields.
  • Experience working with students from diverse cultural and socioeconomic backgrounds as a teacher, research supervisor or mentor.
  • Experience managing field-based or similar experiential learning programs .

Application Requirements

Document requirements
  • Curriculum Vitae - Your most recently updated C.V.

  • Cover Letter

  • Statement of Teaching - Please provide a statement of teaching and mentoring experience, approach
    and vision (up to 2 pages).

  • Statement of Contributions to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion - Please provide a statement of DEI experience, leadership and vision (up to 2
    pages). Candidates are urged to review guidelines on statements (see before preparing their application.

  • Writing Sample - A relevant sample such as a publication, report or grant proposal.

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About UC Santa Cruz

The University of California is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, age, or protected veteran status. UC Santa Cruz is committed to excellence through diversity and strives to establish a climate that welcomes, celebrates, and promotes respect for the contributions of all students and employees. Inquiries regarding the University’s equal employment opportunity policies may be directed to the Office for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion at the University of California, Santa Cruz, CA 95064 or by phone at (831) 459-2686.

Under Federal law, the University of California may employ only individuals who are legally able to work in the United States as established by providing documents as specified in the Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986. Certain UCSC positions funded by federal contracts or sub-contracts require the selected candidate to pass an E-Verify check (see The university sponsors employment-based visas for nonresidents who are offered academic appointments at UC Santa Cruz (see

UCSC is a smoke & tobacco-free campus.

If you need accommodation due to a disability, please contact Disability Management Services at (831) 459-4602.

UCSC is committed to addressing the spousal and partner employment needs of our candidates and employees. As part of this commitment, our institution is a member of the Northern California Higher Education Recruitment Consortium (NorCal HERC). Visit the NorCal HERC website at to search for open positions within a commutable distance of our institution.

The University of California offers a competitive benefits package and a number of programs to support employee work/life balance. For information about employee benefits please visit

As a University employee, you will be required to comply with all applicable University policies and/or collective bargaining agreements, as may be amended from time to time. Federal, state, or local government directives may impose additional requirements.

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Job location

Santa Cruz, California