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Conservation Catalyst

Supporting emerging leaders in conservation

Conservation Catalyst is a professional program designed to strengthen and develop the capacity of emerging conservation leaders and build a global network of integrative, innovative, and collaborative conservation practitioners. 

The program brings eligible conservation professionals from around the world to W&M for a three-week intensive summer in residence. Broadly, the curriculum focuses on developing leadership competency, through skill-building and growing and strengthening participants' networks. Sessions may focus on conflict resolution, storytelling, communication, funding, self and organizational wellness, and community engagement. Participants learn from experts from across W&M units and the IIC network of partners, and engage in knowledge exchange with IIC faculty, staff, and one another through the development of applied projects.

The program takes place primarily on the W&M campus in Williamsburg but may also include engagement with W&M units in other locations such as Washington Center in DC, and Virginia Institute of Marine Science (VIMS) in Gloucester Point, VA.

In 2023, the program's inagural year, we welcomed participants representing Amboseli Ecosystem Trust in Kenya, Botswana Wild Bird Trust, Conservation International locations in Cambodia and Singapore, Eastern Cape Parks and Tourism Agency of South Africa, Living Desert Museum of California, USA, Mbhashe Municipality of South Africa, and Mongolian Conservation Initiative to William & Mary.

The Catalyst Impact

{{youtube:large|R_a4ejR_K9g, Daniel Kaaka of Amboseli Ecosystem Trust in Kenya reflects on his experience as a participant in the IIC Conservation Catalyst program.}}