ECo Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) Statement

ECo DEI wordcloud
Wordcloud created with anonymous responses from members of the ECo community to a “Exploring who we are” exercise.

The Department of Environmental Conservation (ECo) at University of Massachusetts Amherst recognizes the existence of systemic barriers that decrease diversity and inclusion in STEM fields. ECo acknowledges those systems exist and works diligently to identify and dismantle them to broaden accessibility and involvement in

STEM fields. ECo strongly supports and is committed to being a diverse, equitable and inclusive community. ECo embraces the diversity within our department and supports community by welcoming all members regardless of race, gender, sexual orientation, religious beliefs, ethnicity, national origin, socio-economic status, political views, physical abilities, and age. The ECo community recognizes that an equitable, inclusive and diverse department prepares students and scholars for the future, brings diverse perspectives, improves the learning environment, harbors diverse skill sets needed to address complex problems, and fosters a sense of community. Finally, a diverse and inclusive department improves our scholarly environment by empowering members, providing a safe environment to share new ideas, and allows members of the ECo community to grow not just as scientists but also as global citizens.


Fund for Supporting Diverse Student Applications to ECO

Graduate school application fees can be prohibitive for low income applicants, both domestic and International. ECO aims to equitably and justly recruit and support diverse and talented graduate students regardless of their income. By supporting application fees, we aim to remove barriers and increase diversity in the applicant pool. This will create opportunities for all interested and qualified students. We need your help to support these deserving students in need for our 2022-2023 admissions cycle!


2022 DEIJ Award

The Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) Committee of the Department of Environmental Conservation (ECo) is excited to announce the 2022 DEI and Justice (DEIJ) Award. The DEIJ Award recognizes the hard work put in to promote diversity and inclusion within the ECo community. We are now accepting self and third-party nominations in the form of a short summary (500 words max) explaining the nominee’s contributions and dedication to promote DEIJ within the ECo community. Anyone can nominate a member of the ECo community (self-nominations accepted); the nominator does not have to be a member of the ECo community.  The rubric for evaluating nominations can be found here.

There will be four Awards, one each to a faculty member, staff member or postdoctoral fellow, graduate student, and an undergraduate student. The student awards will come with a monetary prize of $500.

Submit nominations (self or for someone else) by May 1, 2022 at

Send any questions to .


“Learning to Make Fieldwork More Accessible” Panel Discussion

Sponsored by the ECo, OEB, and GEO DEI committees, a panel on “Learning to Make Fieldwork More Accessible” was held on March 10 via Zoom. It was moderated by Professor Michele Cooke (UMass Department of Geosciences) and featured panelists:

  • Freya McGregor – Coordinator/Occupational Therapist, Birdability
  • Rachel Adams – UMass Assistant Director of Disability Services and Graduate student in Higher Education
  • Marsha Allen – Graduate student, UMass Geosciences
  • Grace Casselberry – Graduate student, UMass Environmental Conservation
  • Aly Putnam – Graduate student, UMass Organism and Evolutionary Biology Graduate Program

A video recording of the panel can be found here.

The ECo Action Plan

Click here for the ECo Action Plan. This action plan was put together by the ECo Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) Committee and is a result of the conversations, ideas, and concerns expressed by
community members during and after the ECo community forum on July 31, 2020.

Resources for the Community

Resource spreadsheet for grants and other opportunities (compiled by the IDGP DEI Academic Equity committee)

Toolbox for Inclusive Teaching (compiled by UMass Psychological and Brain Sciences)

Reference Document for Holidays (2020-2021)

More resources coming soon

How to Contact Us

Contact the DEI Committee

Contact ECo’s DEI committee:

Provide Anonymous Comments

We welcome comments from the community. Please fill out this form to provide anonymous feedback.

DEI Committee Members

ECo has a Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) committee comprised of faculty, staff, postdoctoral scholars, graduate and undergraduate students that meets regularly to support departmental efforts to ensure ECo is a welcoming, inclusive and safe environmental for all members of our community.

ECo’s DEI committee (2020-2021)

Chair/Faculty Rep:  Toni Lyn Morelli

Faculty Rep:  Megan MacLean

Staff Rep:  Alexandra Renna

Postdoctoral Rep:  Tamee Albrecht

Graduate Student Reps:  Sebastian Moreno,  Samantha Myers,  Amanda Suzzi

Undergraduate Student Reps:  Dorian Kos,  Dipa Lamsal,  Armand Martinez

Past committee members

Peter Chrzanowski

Kadambari Devarajan

Linda Fortin

Genevieve Goebel
Michael Hallworth

Malcolm Itter

Waverly Lau

Olivia Lukacic

Michael Roberts
Aimee Rodrigue

Carolyn Safarik
Sean Sterrett
Paige Warren