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Division of Academic Engagement and Student Achievement Distinguished Scholarships Program

Massie Family Endowed Fellowship

Put your education to use.

The Massie Family Endowed Fellowship provides a Washington State University undergraduate student with $1,500 and the opportunity to create and complete a real-world project benefiting the Yakima Area Arboretum with the support of a WSU faculty mentor. APPLICATIONS FOR THE NEXT MASSIE FELLOWSHIP ARE DUE JAN. 21!

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About the Fellowship

Applications are now open to WSU undergraduate students for the Massie Family Endowed Fellowship ($1,500) at the Yakima Area Arboretum (YAA). The Massie Fellowship:

  • Is awarded annually to an undergraduate.
  • Mutually benefits YAA and WSU by supporting a student’s faculty-mentored efforts on a real-world project that aligns with the evolving priorities, needs, and projects of the Arboretum.
  • Recipient is expected to engage on site with the YAA and its staff to carry out the project. This could necessitate multiple trips to Yakima; the fellowship recipient must provide their own transportation. The final product of the fellowship will be shared with the relevant arboretum staff and mentoring faculty member. Please see the list of possible projects for this year.

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Steps to Apply for the Fellowship

  1. Choose a project. Review the list of current projects that can be completed at the YAA as part of the fellowship. Write about what makes you well suited to undertake this project in the essay question titled “Qualifications” in the application.
  2. Apply online. Complete the application by Jan. 21! Additional Notes|The application will automatically close at 11:59 p.m.
  3. Awardee selected. Applicants will be notified as soon as possible as to award decisions.

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Background on the fellowship

The Massie Family Endowed Fellowship is made possible by an endowment established in 2013 by DuwardBS ’52 Agronomy with honors and his wife, the late Carolyn MassieFormer Nursing student, with their children JenniferMS ’79 Vocational Technical Education and Teaching Certificate, Jill, JeffreyBS ’83 Civil Engineering, JessicaFormer Food Science student, and JodyBA ’90 Education and Teaching Certificate.

The goal of establishing this fund, according to Duward, is to marry the two places he is passionate about (WSU and the YAA) in a relationship that will benefit both.

Duward is the first in his family to earn a college degree. His younger brother, Dale, followed in his path at WSU. In addition to the Massie children who attended WSU, two sons-in-law and grandchildren of Duward and Carolyn have been Cougar students, as well.

Duward Massie poses at YAA’s Jewett Pond with WSU Vice Provost for Undergraduate Education Mary Wack.

A career plant scientist, Duward used his professional education, talents, and abilities in multiple volunteer roles at the Yakima Area Arboretum (YAA) over the course of 40 years—nearly half his life. Known as YAA’s “Dr. Tree-rific,” Duward serves on the organization’s board of directors.

On Arbor Days, he is on hand there to give away many hundreds of seedling trees for visitors to plant at home. According to a newspaper article, Duward said of a tree, “If you get one going it may last beyond your own lifetime.” The article continued that he hopes the legacy he’s planting can last for many generations.

The YAA was established a half century ago, in 1967, by 36 garden clubs. Characterized as an “urban green space and refuge” on 46 acres of land, YAA has been cultivated to feature display gardens and tree collections with 1,000 specimens of trees, forbs, grasses, and shrubs, plus natural areas. The arboretum features nature walks, gardening classes, and architectural structures, and is available for wedding ceremonies, meetings, workshops, and fieldtrips.

The YAA mission is “to inspire people of all ages to discover and connect with nature through a diverse collection of trees and shrubs hardy to the Inland Northwest.” In Duward’s words, “This place is a community treasure.”

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Projects Available to Applicants

Applicants for the Massie Family Endowed Fellowship for 2017-18 must select a project to complete at the Yakima Area Arboretum (YAA). These projects were designed by YAA staff to help address the current needs of the arboretum.

  1. Design a Display GardenPlants displayed in a garden at the Yakima Area Arboretum.
    Project Description: Design a specialized display garden of your choice, i.e. sensory garden, water-wise, edible garden, memorial, perennial bed, etc. Be sure to account for irrigation requirements, maintenance instructions, material descriptions, plants lists, and its expected cost.
  2. Oral History ProjectYakima Area Arboretum naturalist talking about a specimen.
    Project Description: The Yakima Area Arboretum celebrated its 50th Anniversary in 2017. Interview and transcribe the stories of some of the Arboretum’s earliest volunteers, members, and supporters to document important past events and activities to create a historical record.
  3. Children’s Activity BookCover of a Junior Ranger activity book.
    Project Description: Create a children’s activity book focused on the educational components of the YAA, similar to the National Park Service’s Junior Ranger Program. The booklet would be geared toward children 5-12 years old.
  4. Design a Natural Children’s Play GardenChild playing in learning garden.
    Project Description: Design a children’s play garden and/or area on the YAA grounds for children 3-12 years old. The garden should encourage play and exploration in nature and include features that will appeal to the five traditionally identified human senses (sight, hearing, smell, touch, and taste).
  5. Before and AfterCollection of old photos in an album.
    Project Description: If you enjoy photography then this project is for you. We have a large collection of old photographs of trees planted in the early 80’s and 90’s. Scan them, take current photos of the same trees in roughly the same position, and enter them in the data base.
  6. Middle School/High School Lesson PlansDesks with chairs in a typical high school classroom.
    Project Description: Create lesson plans suitable for middle and high school student groups visiting the Arboretum. Include topics such as trees, insects, birds, environmental areas, climate change, invasive species, and/or science experiments.
  7. Arboretum Naturalist TourLooking down a trail at Yakima Area Arboretum.
    Project Description: Design a 45-60 minute walking tour of the Arboretum suitable for one of the Arboretum’s Naturalist volunteers to use. Potential topics include a specific collection(tooltip: More About YAA Collections|Click on this link to review a self-guided tour with more information on the collections of the YAA.) or topic (for example: crabapples, oaks, honeybees, or fall color). Include the history of the collection and the most up-to-date scientific insights, as well as information about the various species, where applicable.
  8. In-depth Study of the Arboretum’s Crabapple CollectionCrabapples growing on one of the arboretum's trees.
    Project Description: The Yakima Area Arboretum has one of the largest crabapple collections in the country with over 50 trees onsite. Note the history and attributes of each tree, and any interesting tidbits about crabapples in general.

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