According to the Census Bureau, less than 3 percent of foresters and conservation scientists in the United States are African-American.
To address this disparity, the North Carolina State University College of Natural Resources is partnering with historically Black Tuskegee University in Alabama to offer an accelerated graduate degree program to students from underrepresented groups who are interested in pursuing forestry careers.
Through the program, participating students will spend three years at Tuskegee, followed by two years at North Carolina State. For their senior year, students will transfer from Tuskegee’s department of agricultural and environmental sciences to North Carolina State’s department of forestry and environmental resources.
At the end of the five years, students who successfully complete the program will have earned a bachelor’s degree in environmental, natural resource and plant sciences from Tuskegee and a master’s degree in forestry from North Carolina State.
Olga Bolden-Tiller, professor and head of the department of agricultural and environmental sciences at Tuskegee University, stated that “Tuskegee University and NC State share a strong commitment to promoting diversity and inclusion in the forestry profession, and we are extremely excited about this partnership as it will provide an opportunity for our students to capitalize on the growing demand for trained foresters in both the public and private sectors.”
Dr. Bolden-Tiller joined the faculty at Tuskegee University in 2006. She holds She holds a bachelor’s degree in agricultural sciences from Fort Valley State University in Georgia and a Ph.D. in animal sciences from the University of Missouri-Columbia