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Growing a garden of future environmental leaders

(Washington, D.C. - Sept. 29, 2008) How do you grow future leaders to develop sustainable energy solutions for America? Start with the sun and the wind. That's what EPA's Science to Achieve Results (STAR) grantee Matthias Fripp is doing at the University of California at Berkeley with his three-year award.

Matt collected data on the estimated power from potential wind farm sites and solar power facilities, and found that because solar and wind power are available at different times, using both sources together makes a more reliable and cheaper power system than just using wind or solar alone.

And Matt Fripp is only one of 32 dynamic, creative students who received EPA STAR fellowships to complete their masters or Ph.D. degrees and work on solutions to important environmental challenges for the future. Another 22 new students were awarded Greater Research Opportunities (GRO) fellowships to complete their graduate and undergraduate degrees.

"These remarkable young people will undoubtedly have an impact on the future of our environment, "said George Gray, EPA's assistant administrator for the Office of Research and Development. "We are proud to help educate these fellows who are making an environmental difference."

EPA's Office of Research and Development supports several fellowship programs in an effort to address our country's most important environmental workforce needs. EPA's STAR graduate fellowship program supports some of the nation's most promising masters and doctoral candidates. A total of 879 applicants competed this year for 32 fellowships.

EPA's GRO fellowship program helps build environmental studies programs at universities with limited funding for research and development. A total of 156 applicants competed this year for 22 fellowships. Several former GRO fellows now work for EPA, including 2002 GRO fellow Toiya Goodlow who works as a chemist in the Office of Pesticide Programs, and 1990 GRO fellow Dr. Brandon Jones, who is a marine biologist in the Office of Research and Development.

Since the fellowship program began in 1995, EPA has awarded more than 2,200 fellowships to students in almost every state, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico. All applications for EPA's fellowship programs are rigorously peer reviewed.


Contact: Suzanne Ackerman
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

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