News & Resources


A Signature Honor - Au Sable Professor Rachel Lamb Wins Harvey Fellowship

Feb 26, 2018

Among Christian scholars in academia, there are few honors higher than the Harvey Fellowship, a ministry of the Mustard Seed Foundation (MSF), an organization dedicated to, among other ministries, supporting Christians pursuing advanced educational degrees in preparation for leadership roles in society. Through its Harvey Fellows Program, the MSF provides financial support to Christian students pursuing graduate studies at premier universities in fields considered to be underrepresented by Christians. The Harvey Fellows Program seeks to mark, equip and encourage individuals to actively integrate their faith and vocation as leaders in strategic occupations, with the expectation that such young scholars grow to become people of disproportionate influence in their fields, advancing God’s kingdom and Christ’s work in strategic areas. With awards to individual students of up to $48,000 over a three-year period, as well as the prestige that has come to be associated with it, the Harvey Fellowship is today one of the most competitive and esteemed awards that any graduate student can receive.

Knowing the high honor of a Harvey Fellowship and all that it represents, we at Au Sable are delighted that one of our own faculty, Rachel Lamb, has received the 2018 Fellowship. Au Sable’s instructor in the Environmental Law and Policy course, Rachel teaches in an area that has not, in the past, received concentrated attention in Au Sables’ academic program. As Executive Director Fred Van Dyke explained, “We needed a course addressing the fundamentals of environmental law and policy, not only in what they contain but how they are formed and changed. And we needed someone actively engaged in influencing that formation. That person is Rachel Lamb. Although Rachel has not yet completed her Ph.D. at the University of Maryland, I wanted her to join our faculty now both for what she already is as well as for what she will become a person of influence at the highest levels of public policy debate, and a unique and outstanding mentor to our students. Rachel shows her students how to be and become people of influence in environmental law and policy, as Rachel is herself.”

Rachel is no stranger to recognition. A Flagship Fellow in the Department of Geographical Sciences, she holds the highest fellowship award given by the University of Maryland. Rachel has previously been honored at the White House as a Champion of Change for her work on climate action in the Christian community. A recipient of the US Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Greater Research Opportunities (GRO) Fellowship while still an undergraduate at Wheaton College (Illinois), and more recently a Graduate Pursuits Research Fellowship from the National Science Foundation supported Socio-Environmental Synthesis Center (SESYNC), Rachel has also served as National Organizer and Spokesperson for Young Evangelicals for Climate Action (YECA) and worked in the prestigious Mickey Leland Internship Program for Texas Commission on Environmental Quality. Already a published author on effects of climate change in native American cultures and on effects of habitat arrangement in amphibian communities, Rachel will be the co-author, with Au Sable’s Executive Director Fred Van Dyke, of the third edition of the globally-used textbook, Conservation Biology: Foundations, Concepts, Applications to be published in 2019.

Of her own recognition and receipt of the Harvey Fellowship, Rachel noted, “I am very grateful for the support of the Harvey Fellowship and Mustard Seed Foundation. This award provides more freedom to advance my dissertation research at the science-policy interface, with the explicit recognition that this work is part of my Christian vocation and witness.” “We’re very happy for Rachel,” said Dr. Fred Van Dyke, “for this deserved recognition and strategic support for her career, and life, of growing Christian influence in creation care. She has made and continues to make a great difference in the lives of our students here and in all her efforts worldwide.” Congratulations, Rachel, on this prestigious award! We’re honored to count you a member of the Au Sable community!