Colorado State University is well represented in one of the nation’s top programs dedicated to cultivating the next generation of leaders.
Five CSU graduate students were recently selected as finalists in the Presidential Management Fellows Program, a leadership initiative that serves as the federal government’s premiere pipeline for moving advanced degree graduates into government leadership positions.
Four CSU students from the Fort Collins campus and one from CSU Global were named finalists in the highly selective program, which will allow them to apply for fellowships at government agencies such as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Department of the Interior, Secret Service and many others.
The Fort Collins campus finalists are Camden Baker, Natural Resource Stewardship in Forest and Rangeland Stewardship; Jeremiah Gorske, Conservation Leadership in Human Dimensions of Natural Resources; Erika Peirce, Graduate Degree Program in Ecology through Agricultural Biology; and Anna Wright, graduate degree program in ecology through Forest and Rangeland Stewardship. The CSU Global finalist is Theresa Gonzalez, Health Administration.
Baker, a PMF finalist in the Warner College of Natural Resources, hopes to accept an appointment opportunity that involves natural resource planning and policy compliance with a federal land management agency. “Becoming a Presidential Management Fellowship Finalist means that I have an opportunity to join a community that promotes good leadership principles in our federal agencies,” he said.
Established in 1977 by an executive order from President Jimmy Carter, the two-year fellowship program is designed to help graduate students jump-start their careers through unique leadership training. Each fellowship comes with a full salary and benefits at a select federal agency, which provides training, development and mentoring.
Last year, the PMF program had a class of 1,100 finalists. Those finalists participated in a round of federal agency meet-and-greets in the spring and then in the summer took part in a hiring fair hosted by the U.S. Office of Personnel Management.
This year, the PMF program selected 850 applicants as finalists out of a pool of more than 10,000 applicants. The 2023 finalist pool represents approximately 98 academic degree programs and 249 academic institutions worldwide. Additionally, approximately 18% are veterans. Finalists have an appointment eligibility period of 12 months, expiring in February 2024.
“The PMF program will allow them to share their incredible talents and provide leadership to our nation. It is an important reminder of our graduate students’ abilities to further CSU’s land-grant mission and Principles of Community at the national level.”
— Colleen Webb, vice provost for graduate affairs and dean of the Graduate School
“I am so excited that our CSU graduate community will be represented within our government by these amazing Graduate School — soon to be — alumni,” said Colleen Webb, vice provost for graduate affairs and dean of the Graduate School. “The PMF program will allow them to share their incredible talents and provide leadership to our nation. It is an important reminder of our graduate students’ abilities to further CSU’s land-grant mission and Principles of Community at the national level.”