The Jeffrey Matheny Scholarship Fund
Jeffrey Matheny loved St. John and the healing powers of Virgin Islands National Park. In his honor, the Friends sponsors a scholarship program established by his family with the aim of encouraging study, among Virgin Islanders at the university level, in fields related to natural resource management and/or protection.
The scholarship program offers a $2500 annual scholarship to a Virgin Islander attending or entering into an accredited university with a planned major in a field related to natural resources like environmental science, biology, chemistry, marine science, or oceanography.
To be eligible for the scholarship, students must have:
- Virgin Island residence and have completed high school in the Virgin Islands (or be a senior)
- Attained a 3.0 ("B" Average) during their previous (and most recent) three-semesters of high school and/or university (whichever is applicable).
- Studying in one of the degree fields listed above.
Please note that while priority will be given to Virgin Islanders studying at the University of the Virgin Islands, Virgin Islanders studying at any accredited university are eligible to apply.
"What are the Effects of Marine Protected Areas on Fisheries in the Virgin Islands?"
Meet Danielle Olive, one of our college scholarship recipients. Danielle was born and raised on St. Thomas. Her early interest in marine biology came from visits to Coral World with her father who sold merchandise to their store, affording them unlimited passes to the marine park.
From those early experiences getting a firsthand look at the wonders of our sea, Danielle took every opportunity to pursue her passion. She interned with NOAA in the United States, and applied for the Friends' Jeffery Matheny Scholarship in 2015 to assist with her undergraduate studies.
Following her graduation this spring (2020), Danielle had an important question she wanted to investigate, "What are the effects of marine protected areas on fisheries in the Virgin Islands?" Her passion for marine conservation led her to pursue a Masters Degree at the University of the Virgin Islands. Today, Danielle is investigating the life history, traits and population connectivity of the Mutton Snapper with Dr. Richard Nemeth. We are so proud to be a part of Danielle's academic journey, and thrilled to share her story with you! Stay tuned for more from this impressive young lady!
Caliyah Helliger, Howard University
Lila Uzzell, University of Virgin Islands (Graduate Program)
Lyric Vacharat, University of North Carolina Wilmington
Shareena A. Cannonier
Scholarship recipient Shareena A. Cannonier graduates Summa Cum Laude!