Research Awards & Internships

The Hixon Center offers opportunities to students and faculty interested in research, internships, scholarships or career options in Urban Forestry or related fields. The following listings provide up-to-date information with regard to:

· Research Awards
· Internships

Research Awards

Grant Awards in Urban Ecology: Call for Proposals

Five grant awards ranging from $5,000 - $7,000 are available to Yale FES students interested in conducting natural and social science research, education & outreach projects for the following topic areas:  

  • Urban ecosystem restoration
  • Urban forestry and forestry across an urban-rural gradient
  • Projects related to pollution of air, water and soil in cities

In the fall term 2015, students must take a 3-credit project course to complete their research/project manuscript.  Projects must be completed by mid-December. The award will be provided in 3 installments: 50% upon acceptance of the proposal; 25% upon enrollment in the project course in September; and the final 25% upon completion of the project course, and receipt of an abstract and of a minimum 10-page final report (which will be published on the Hixon website).  

Submission Guidelines: Proposals should include maximum 3-page narrative, budget and identify a faculty advisor.  Please direct proposals to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) preferably by on Friday, March 6, 2015.  Successful applicants will be notified by March 25, 2015.

Applicants are strongly encouraged to attend the 2014 Hixon Fellow presentations on February 27th. 


 URI Community Forester Internship Description

The Yale/Urban Resources Initiative (Yale/URI) is offering seven community forester internship opportunities with the New Haven/Urban Resources Initiative (New Haven/URI) for the summer of 2015.

New Haven/URI, in collaboration with the Community Foundation for Greater New Haven (CFGNH), and with the Livable City Initiative (LCI), is implementing a city-wide Community Greenspace Program. URI's goal for this program is to foster community forestry stewardship through environmental restoration projects. URI seeks to work with community members to stabilize their neighborhoods through community driven environmental restoration projects, which provide an opportunity to unite neighborhoods socially while improving the biophysical environment.

New Haven's Community Forestry program is conducted in cooperation with a variety of city agencies – LCI (a housing based agency), the Department of Parks, Recreation and Trees, and the Department of Public Works. The Community Greenspace Program encourages neighborhood organizations to undertake community-based, public as well as private stewardship efforts. Depending upon community interests and applications to this program, projects will include street tree plantings, park improvement projects, conversion of abandoned lots to “pocket” parks, as well as planting activities on private properties.

New Haven/URI seeks to hire seven community foresters for the summer of 2015. The interns’ role in the Greenspace Program is to provide both technical and material support to communities. The exact nature of the work will depend upon the needs outlined in applications submitted by communities to the CFGNH. The community forestry interns will likely: train community members in conducting a neighborhood inventory, species choices, site selection, site preparation (including soil testing, erosion control measures, and enrichment through addition of compost), design for desired function/outcomes, tree maintenance (insect control, watering, mulching, pruning, etc), and planting methods. Training sessions will be conducted in small community workshops, as well as individual or small group activities.

During the spring semester, interns will participate in training events provided by faculty, staff and outside professionals to gain skills needed for working effectively in the community. Training events will include topics such as community forestry methods, soil remediation, landscape design, and habitat plantings. With this skill base interns will begin working with community groups and test techniques (key informant interviews, observational studies) in order to gain familiarity with the community they will work in for the duration of the summer.

Qualifications: Skills in community organizing, participatory forestry, and restoration ecology are highly desired. However, most important is a willingness to engage citizens, work hard alongside them, and maintain a positive spirit in difficult conditions. Because community forestry requires input from representatives of many different organizations, an ability to work with varied organizations and individuals is essential. As documentation is an integral component of this project, excellent communication and writing skills are required.

URI Community Forester Internship Details

Stipend: $8,450

Transportation: All URI interns will share the use of URI vehicles. If it is necessary to drive personal vehicles for business purposes, interns will be reimbursed for business miles.

Other Requirements: Interns must have a valid driver's license. Interns also must have current permission to drive Yale vehicles.  Interns must have the ability to work Tues-Sat for the full summer schedule.  See below.

Length of Employment: May 13 - August 16 (13 weeks full time)

Deadline for Application:  March 21, 2015  Optional 90-minute Friday trainings begin on April 4.

Send a letter of intent and resume to: Colleen Murphy-Dunning, Director, Urban Resources Initiative or Chris Ozyck, URI Associate Director (Students may email applications or hand deliver their applications to the URI office at 301 Prospect Street, 1st floor).

For Further Information: If you require further information, please contact Chris Ozyck at (203) 432-6189 or Colleen Murphy-Dunning at (203) 432-6570.




Working with Yale faculty and Facilities staff, two Hixon Center interns will support the development of a plan for the ecological restoration of the Yale wetland also known as the “Yale Swale” located on campus. The plan will detail strategies (including timeline and stages of work) for the comprehensive restoration of the Yale Swale site. Goals include enhancing habitat, improving capacity to capture stormwater, enhancing water quality, and serving as an educational resource and demonstration site for the Universities education undergraduate and master’s professional programs and the surrounding community. In addition to addressing ecological restoration, concerns of security, aesthetics, social constraints, and ease of management must be considered.


The swale will reflect Yale’s vision to create a living laboratory on campus by providing opportunities for education, research, and experimentation. The site can be used for course instruction and real world experimentation and can be used to educate and train incoming FES students during MODs.


Development of the plan will require interns to gather data on vegetation, animals, and hydrology to characterize the site. Students will also collect information from city agencies to evaluate existing hydrologic infrastructure (e.g., stormwater conveyances). Students may also interact with the few private property owners with inholdings in the swale. It is expected that interns will also help plan a tentative vision and to begin the first phase of site restoration. Site work might include invasive species removal, trail development, installation of hydrologic measurement systems, and the potential creation of educational signage.


QUALIFICATIONS: Ideal candidates will be Yale students with broad knowledge of environmental sciences including plants, animals, hydrology, soils, and chemistry. They will be able to work on multiple tasks, have good people skills, and be willing to perform some hard physical labor.


Details: Timeframe is Summer 2014. Hourly rate is $15.00




Hixon Center Director, Colleen Murphy-Dunning via email: .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

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