The Society of American Foresters named Stephen F. Austin State University senior Kathryn Christensen as a 2019 Diversity Scholar and recognized the SFA student chapter of the SAF as one of the top three student chapters in the nation during the organization’s national conference held last month in Louisville, Kentucky.
The SAF Diversity Scholar Program is designed to promote leadership and create community within the SAF by encouraging the involvement of a variety of people in the profession. As the 2019 Diversity Scholar, Christensen participated in the organization’s Diversity and Inclusion Working Group and was paired with a mentor who works in the field of natural resources.
Christensen, a forestry major, said she advocates for expanding access to outdoor recreation in marginalized communities.
“My love for the outdoors came from my mother’s amazingly creative ways to get us in touch with nature on a budget,” Christensen said. “My past experiences of feeling left out because of the inability to afford camps, cruises and more luxurious ways of viewing nature has only fueled my passion for giving opportunities to those who find outdoor recreation unattainable.”
Christensen serves as the president of the student chapter of the SAF, and along with other organization members, she was instrumental in the SFA chapter being recognized on a national stage for its accomplishments in service, involvement with other natural resource organizations and building community relationships.