Natalie Baillargeon '21 and Storm Lewis '21 receive Honorable Mention for prestigous 2020 Udall Foundation Scholarship
Two Smith College students, Natalie Baillargeon '21 and Storm Lewis '21, were named Honorable Mention recipients for the 2020 Udall Foundation Scholarship. This nationally competitive award honors sophomores and juniors for leadership, public service, and commitment to issues related to Native American nations or to the environment. Honorable Mention recipients are welcomed into the Udall Scholar network, which includes access to over 2,000 scholarship alumni, job and internship opportunities, and a lifelong connection to the Udall Foundation’s wide range of programming and resources.
Natalie Baillargeon ‘21, Environmental Science and Policy Major
Natalie’s extensive experience in climate change research and commitment to acting on science through policy led her to apply for the scholarship. Since 2018, she has been a part of the National Science Foundation’s Polaris Research Project, which investigates climate change in the Arctic. Natalie’s specific focus is on the impact of wildfires on vegetation and nutrient cycling in Alaska. She collected research during the summers of 2018 and 2019, and designed independent studies to analyze her data during both of the following academic years. In addition to writing about her research experience, Natalie discussed her future career goal of crafting policy that guides climate change mitigation and adaptation. She imagines working for a federal agency, like the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Along with the Lazarus Center’s Fellowship Office, Professors Bob Newton, Alex Barron, and Camille Washington-Ottombre advised Natalie throughout the application process.
She is proud and excited to earn this honor and is looking forward to the lifelong connections she will make through the Udall Foundation network.
Storm Lewis ‘21, Environmental Science and Policy Major
As someone who is deeply passionate about environmental justice, Storm was drawn to the scholarship and the opportunities it offers for connecting with other students who are also driven and passionate about issues related to the environment and Native American nations. Storm’s research and leadership on campus has focused on the intersection of environmental issues and social justice. She’s led workshops and programming on campus as part of the Bridge program and the Year on Climate Change that have connected issues of environment to food and multiculturalism. In addition, she’s been a part of participatory research projects at Smith - investigating Morocco’s female-led climate mitigation and resiliency efforts with Professor Camille Washington-Ottombre - and beyond - at the University of Vermont’s Agroecology and Livelihoods Collaborative. She is an advocate for rooting academic research in community participation and co-authorship. Through the Mellon Mays Fellowship, she is applying a participatory research framework to investigating urban agriculture in the face of gentrification in her hometown of New York City. She is committed to a career where she continues working towards food and environmental justice.
She is grateful for clarity that applying for the scholarship brought her in articulating what passions have led her path thus far, and where she wants to go in the future.