2024-2025 Scholarship is Open!

The Friends of Valle de Oro National Wildlife Refuge announces the Opening Doors to Nature Education Scholarship Program for the 2024-2025 academic year. Under the Program this year, the Friends will award scholarships in the amount of $500 each. These scholarships will be awarded to undergraduate college students who are currently enrolled in an undergraduate conservation/environmental-focused degree or certificate program.

Program Guidelines and Priorities:

Applicants must meet at least one of the following criteria in order to apply:

  • Attended a High School or College within New Mexico and are currently enrolled as an undergraduate in a (2)-year or (4)-year college or university in any location.
  • Attended a High School or College outside of New Mexico but are currently enrolled in a two (2)-year community college or four (4)-year college or university within the state of New Mexico. Undergraduates only.
  • Students who are eligible can apply in more than one year, but this Scholarship can be awarded to an individual only one time.

Some preference will be given to applicants who have participated in a Valle de Oro National Wildlife Refuge or Friends of Valle de Oro NWR project, internship, or program, but this experience is not required.

Completed applications must be received by the Friends of Valle de Oro no later than 11:59 pm  Monday, July 15, 2024. Late or incomplete applications, or portions of applications, will not be accepted. 

Applications will be reviewed, and award recipients selected by the Friends Scholarship Committee. Scholarship winners will be announced on August 5th 2024. 

Requirements of Scholarship Winners:
Scholarship winners must show proof of enrollment through the College Advisory Verification Form
(below) in order to receive the scholarship payment. The College Advisory Verification Form must be
submitted to the scholarship committee on or before 11:59 pm Friday September 6, 2024. The Scholarship funds will be paid upon receipt of the College Advisory Verification Form. The award should be applied to tuition or education related materials (books, field or lab equipment, etc.) in the 2024-2025 school year. Scholarship winners should plan to participate, either in person or virtually, at the September or October 2024 Board Meeting of the Friends of Valle de Oro to meet the board members and say a few words about their academic plan and how the scholarship has helped them work toward their educational goals.

Scholarship winners are required to provide short reports on academic progress and use of funds by
the following deadlines:
Mid-Year Report: due by 11:59 pm Friday January 3, 2025
Final Year-end Report: due by 11:59 pm Friday May 30, 2025

A reminder e-mail and/or phone call will be given a week or so prior to the report being due. Your
college advisor will be notified if reports are not received on time.

You can find the online application at, and we encourage
submittal of the application and essay using this online form. However, if necessary, you can print
and complete the application and essay and send the hardcopies to the Friends address:

Friends of Valle de Oro NWR
c/o Nature Scholarship Committee
7851 2nd St. SW
Albuquerque, NM 87105

If you have any questions about the application or submittal process, please contact Joan Morrison at

Remember, all application materials must be received by the Friends of Valle de Oro no later
than 11:59 pm Monday July 15, 2024.

Click the "APPLY HERE" button to access the application via a Google Form.

If you are selected you will need to download the College Advisory Verification Form HERE:    Word   PDF

If you would prefer to download and print the entire application, you can do so here:    Word   PDF.

If you choose not to use the online form, mail a paper copy to: Friends of Valle de Oro NWR, c/o Scholarship Committee, 7851 2nd St. SW, Albuquerque, NM 87105 OR, email a scanned or PDF version to