2019 Michigan Outdoor Writers Association/Toyota Let’s Go Places Scholarship
The Michigan Outdoor Writers Association (MOWA), in conjunction with Toyota Motor North America, offers $3,000 annually to certain college student Michigan residents, some aspect of whose career plans include communicating the outdoors experience.
From issues like public lands, wildlife diseases or local water quality challenges to outdoor recreation activities or nature writing, the possible areas of interest and expression are vast; so are the media in which one specializes: journalism, videography, podcasts, nature photography, essays, books. The scholarship is meant to help subsidize the efforts of individuals as they take the next steps toward achieving this career goal.
MOWA is the state-level organization of professional outdoors communicators, and in addition to the money, the winner will be given a MOWA membership and access to all that the group – and its highly experienced members – have to offer.
1. Michigan resident
2. Junior or senior status at a four-year university or grad student
3. Obey the laws governing outdoor recreational activities and support the rights of individuals engaged
in those activities
4. Submit an application packet comprising two-parts: letter and sample
5. Attend the annual MOWA conference (usually in early June) at which the scholarship will be awarded.
• I live in Michigan but attend a four-year out-of state school. Am I eligible for the scholarship?
• I attend school in Michigan, but my permanent address is out-of-state. Am I eligible?
• Are there any restrictions on how I spend the money?
OK: expenses for your growth as a communicator: tablet, photo gear, imaging software, video camera,
professional library, podcast studio set up, seminars, workshops, story-gathering trips, etc.
Not OK: expenses for sporting gear or unrelated trips: snowboard, shotgun, fishing rod, backpack,
hiking boots, flight to NYC for friend’s wedding etc.
Other than that, before spending some of the money, just ask yourself, “Will this help me become a
better communicator?” Also, remember, a year after receiving the scholarship you will be asked to return
to speak to the group about how the scholarship helped you grow as an outdoor communicator.
How to Apply
The application process for the MOWA/Toyota Let’s Go Places Scholarship is fairly simple and involves
just two steps: tell us about yourself and show us how you like to communicate about the outdoors.
1. Letter of application to include:
• Name, address, phone number, email address
• College/university attending, major and minor
• Primary career goal plus outdoor communication goal if different
• Favorite area/topic to explore when communicating the outdoors
• Preferred mode of expressing the outdoors experience (writing, video, photography, etc.)
2. Sample of your preferred mode of expression on one angle of your preferred topic of exploration –
cover the topic as deeply as you can while staying within maximum lengths
• Written (news story, essay, sample book chapter, scientific writing) – 800 words, maximum
• Photography (photo essay or “gallery” on one topic/subject) – 10 photos maximum
• Video or podcast (audio or video “essay,” news report, news feature) – 5 minutes maximum
3. Writing or photo samples may be sent as a PDF attachment with the application letter
4. Videos or podcasts: Please provide links, clearly marked as such and included in the application letter
Please provide a specific public URL link (YouTube, Vimeo, your website, etc.). The URL must not
require members of the committee to open an account or subscribe to any kind of service to view or
listen to the sample being submitted.
5. Submissions that exceed the stated maximum will be discarded
6. The decision of the judges is final.
7. Submit application packet to Drew Youngdyke, Chair, MOWA/Toyota Scholarship,
8. Application packet must be received by March 31, 2019