Welcome from Student Assistant, Sam Faries

Welcome from Student Assistant, Sam Faries


My name is Sam Faries and I am a first-year Master of Environmental Management student as well as the newest student assistant with the Yale F&ES Admissions Office. In the two months that I have spent at F&ES I have had my decision to come here justified time and again. I have already received so much from the F&ES community and, I hope, give back by engaging with the next round of applicants and admitted students to answer questions and alleviate concerns about the application process, choosing a school, and F&ES at large.

Where I was before F&ES:

I was born and raised in Austin, Texas and graduated from the University of Texas at Austin in 2015 with a B.S. in Environmental Science. I conducted my thesis research at the Rocky Mountain Biological Laboratory where I studied flowering phenology as a barrier to gene flow across a light gradient in an alpine plant system. After my thesis research, I worked for a University of Texas research lab on a Department of Energy-funded project to analyze the biofuel potential of switchgrass by examining the genetic, physiological, and ecological processes associated with climatic adaptation and biomass production. Although my background is in traditional environmental science and biological research, I wanted to shift focus in graduate school and applied to professionally focused programs with the aim of becoming a practitioner of environmental economics within the public policy realm.

Why FES & what I love about it here:

I cast a wide net during the application process and applied to five programs in the United States and four programs in Europe. The nerve-racking process of deciding on a school was simplified immensely after visiting F&ES for the Admitted Student Open House. The opportunities at Yale truly seem endless, with a constant stream of summits, conferences, and seminars bringing exciting researchers, politicians, and business leaders to campus and an abundance of centers and programs offering opportunities to work and network with professionals and academics alike.

Most importantly, the community at F&ES is phenomenally supportive and tightknit. There is a familial atmosphere to the program and everyone truly wants to see everyone else succeed. Yale as a whole preaches interdisciplinary connections and this philosophy feels magnified within F&ES. The diversity within the program is one of its greatest strengths and you will be continually inspired by your classmates if you come here.

What I do in my free time:

Like many, FESers, I am an avid outdoorsman. I love to hike, backpack, fly-fish, and daydream about the next time I can hike, backpack, and fly-fish. In the last few years, I have also added astrophotography to my list of outdoor recreational hobbies. I love playing and watching sports with Saturdays in the fall reserved for University of Texas football and March reserved for basketball madness. I have seen every episode of Survivor (that is over 500 episodes and over 20 days of watch time) and I do not regret it.

Reaching Out:

I am here to be a resource to prospective, admitted, and incoming students! My email is sam.faries@yale.edu and I am always quick to respond when I am not in classes or a meeting. I can answer questions about F&ES from a student’s perspective and the application process from a recent applicant’s perspective. Please do not hesitate to contact me!