Professional Development Grants

This small grant program is designed to provide direct support for professional development for Switzer Fellows. This program recognizes that funding for professional development is not readily available in the public sector and that environmental leaders benefit from new skills and opportunities to broaden their networks.

Switzer Fellows may request funds for training in non-profit management, communications, leadership, or other relevant professional skills or for attendance at a conference or other professional activity that will clearly advance the Fellow's career goals.  Past grants have funded Fellows to attend conferences that offered key networking opportunities or a chance to present their work to colleagues; participate in specific skills trainings like negotiation, facilitation, etc.; and to participate in leadership development programs for executive directors and other senior public sector staff.

Awards of up to $500 are made on a rolling basis. Please see How to Apply and contact Erin Lloyd, Program Director, for more information.  Grants will be made at the discretion of the Executive Director or Program Director. Requests will be considered monthly to ensure rapid response time for requests  Grants are occasionally made at the Foundation's discretion to other environmental leadership development programs that directly serve one or more Switzer Fellows.

Spotlight on Leadership

In Safer Hands
Nail salons offering “manis” and “pedis” have become a booming business in the United States, setting up shop on seemingly every corner and approaching $8 billion in annual sales. “You have numerous chemicals being mixed, new products coming out all the time, limited available data on health effects and weak accountability for the manufacturers,” says 2008 Fellow Thu Quach, who is a research scientist with the Cancer Prevention Institute of California and research director for Asian Health Services. “That would make it difficult for the workers to protect themselves even if there weren’t language barriers.” She is part of a grassroots effort that empowers low-wage, Vietnamese immigrant-dominated nail salon workers to fight for healthier conditions.Read more >

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