For those who are college bound and love to hunt or fish, the new President’s Outdoor Scholars program at the University of Montevallo could be a perfect fit.
Starting this fall, the university will offer several scholarships to students who enjoy the great outdoors and have a bent toward conservation. The partial tuition will be renewable each year, based on students fulfilling a 2.5 GPA.
William Crawford, the university’s director of Annual Giving, said the program will cover the cost of activities centered on hunting and fishing techniques and strategies. Outdoor celebrities, marine biologists, game wardens and professional fishermen will lecture. Students will attend bimonthly seminars about wildlife conservation and game management while exploring outdoors-related careers.
“This program is wide open for whatever students want to major in. We see this as opening doors to different businesses once students finish school, to broaden their opportunities,” Crawford said. “Students won’t be limited to a certain major. This program will add another dimension to their chosen career.”
Crawford said that students who desire a writing career, for instance, could broaden their knowledge to include outdoors sports stories.
As part of Outdoor Scholars, students can elect to take one trip yearly: bass fishing on Lake Fork in Texas, with a professional guide; quail hunting at an exclusive club; bass fishing at private lakes and ponds; saltwater fishing off the Gulf Coast or in the Florida Keys; duck hunting in the Mississippi Delta, Arkansas or Louisiana; guided big-game hunts; or trout fishing in Venice, La.
“We want our students to continue doing what they love during college,” Crawford said. “In other words, don’t give up your love of fishing or hunting just because you’re in school.”
Founded in 1896, the University of Montevallo is ranked by U.S. News & World Report as the top public master’s-level university in Alabama in the 2014 edition of “America’s Best Colleges.”