Scholarship Funds

Supporting tomorrow's leaders.

General Scholarship Fund

We believe our courses, and the special way we teach them, are an extraordinary part of not only a quality education, but the training we all need to realize our potential and become thoughtful and engaged citizens.

Overwhelmingly, the young men and women who participate in our courses come away fundamentally changed. They learn more about themselves and the complex and beautiful world in which they live. Many of our students acknowledge that their WRFI experience was instrumental in helping them figure out what to do with the rest of their lives – whether it’s an undergraduate major, a career path, or graduate or law school.

While we keep our prices as affordable as possible, and much lower than other organizations offering similar programs, our courses are still out of reach for many people. Please help us help others have a WRFI experience by donating to our General Scholarship Fund. These scholarships help to offset costs and allow tomorrow’s leaders, no matter their current socio-economic situation, to learn the WRFI Way.

Beth Morris Field Course Scholarship

This scholarship is dedicated to the memory and values of Beth Morris, who passed away in early 2014. Beth lived a long life filled with curiosity, laughter, and adventures. She loved animals and plants, as well as people working hard to live in harmony with the natural world. She pursued practical work that connected people to places, and aspired to build bridges between diverse cultures. Beth was a joyful lifelong learner and teacher who could always find something worth exploring in a companion, a forest trail, a wild river, or a long bike tour. WRFI students who embody these values would have had her enthusiastic support.

Donations to the Beth Morris Scholarship Fund will be dedicated to providing scholarships for students on the Cycle the Rockies course.

Matt Thomas Scholarship Fund

Matt Thomas (1958-2002)

Matt Thomas was a co-founder of the Wild Rockies Field Institute whose ideals profoundly affected the vision and focus of the organization. Matt was a key member of the Field Institute’s board and staff from the organization’s inception – he was our founding vice-president, an extremely dedicated instructor, a leader, and an inspiration for many of us. On Wednesday, May 15, 2002, Matt Thomas died suddenly from natural causes at his home in Missoula, Montana. He was 44 years old.

The Matt Thomas Scholarship Fund was established in 2002 by Matt’s friends and family in memory of Matt and his commitment to education.

As an instructor, Matt consistently encouraged his students to consider human/land relations from multiple cultural and historical perspectives, to develop a personal philosophy for living well with the land, and to examine themselves and their interactions with the land. In his personal life Matt was dedicated to local politics, environmental and river advocacy, and the study of eco-feminism and sustainable human/land relations.

The Matt Thomas Scholarship Fund grants merit-based scholarships each year to students on the Montana Afoot and Afloat course who clearly embody Matt’s ideals and visions. To honor Matt’s legacy and donate to the Matt Thomas Scholarship Fund, please visit our donations page.

2022 marks the 20th year since Matt’s passing. Visit our 20-year tribute page to learn how we’re honoring Matt’s legacy this year.

Joel DiBiase Memorial Scholarship Fund

Joel DiBiase (1995-2021)

This scholarship is made possible by the family and friends of Joel DiBiase and is available to students enrolling in the Restoration Ecology in Greater Yellowstone course beginning in the spring of 2022.

Joel was a student on WRFI’s 2019 Restoration Ecology course and sadly passed away in April 2021. Joel studied Environmental Science at Humboldt State University and Sacramento State University. His passion for the outdoors and his commitment to restoring, conserving, and preserving our public lands was contagious and admirable. Through this memorial scholarship we keep Joel’s legacy and love for wild spaces alive. To donate to the Joel DiBiase Scholarship Fund, please visit our donations page.