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Rafe Sagarin Travel Grant

Rafe Sagarin Travel Award For Carson Scholars

In memory of Carson Scholar mentor Rafe Sagarin the Institute of the Environment has established the Rafe Sagarin Travel Award for Carson Scholars. This award will support travel for fieldwork and other experiences by Carson Scholars past and present who are current registered students at the University of Arizona through the period of the award.

A budget of $1,000 has been made available for 2018 and two (2) $500 travel awards will be offered. Travel funds should be used for fieldwork or other experiences beyond the university in recognition of Rafe’s passion for the field and service to the community. Our preference is to support travel for fieldwork, outreach or longer workshops rather than standard academic conferences. A committee of Carson mentors and supporters will select the winning applications.

2018 Travel Award Application Instructions

Application Deadline:​ February 15, 2018 at 5:00pm


To apply for the 2018 Rafe Sagarin Travel Award (which can be used for travel until August 2018), please submit an application with the following information:

  • Name, department, anticipated degree date, and name of advisor
  • Recent CV
  • A 1-page statement outlining how the travel award will advance your research and how it relates to the spirit of the Carson Scholars program and the issues Rafe Sagarin was passionate about (e.g. communicating science, ecology, the ocean, environmental policy, etc.)
  • A detailed budget of all anticipated travel costs (transport, accommodations, etc.), including matching funds and how other expenses will be covered

Combine all of this information into ONE PDF file for submission.


Applications should be submitted electronically to Tina Gargus at


A committee of Carson mentors and supporters will review applications. Partial or full funding will be awarded at the discretion of the committee. Review criteria will include the strength of the proposal (e.g. impact on the scholars’ career, advancement of research, on scholarship in general, and/or environmental science and policy), relation to the Carson Scholars program, and financial need. Award notifications will be announced no later than May 1, 2018.

Post-Travel Award Summary (Due Dec 1, 2018): Award recipients will be asked to provide a 1-2 page post travel narrative about their fieldwork and travel experiences, highlighting the impact to their current work or field to solve the environmental issues facing our society today.  


Rafe Sagarin (June 20, 1971 – May 28, 2015) was a founding and inspiring mentor for the Carson Scholars program since its inception in 2011. He was a marine ecologist and environmental policy analyst at the University of Arizona. On May 28, 2015, Rafe Sagarin was tragically killed while riding his bike near his beloved Biosphere 2. His memory lives on vividly in all those who knew him, and his contributions to science and adaptable solutions to security remain relevant to practitioners and academics around the world. He is greatly missed by all involved with the Carson Scholars program.

To learn more about Rafe Sagarin and his work, visit

Video: An Ocean Under Glass
Dr. Rafe Sagarin, Founding Ocean Programs Director at University of Arizona Biosphere 2 gives a short overview of the conversion of the Biosphere 2 ocean biome to a Sea of Cortez model or analogue.

           Remembering Rafe Sagarin by Chris Cokinos