Funding and Scholarship Opportunities



Dr. Walter P. Nickell was a noted Michigan naturalist, ornithologist, and teacher who served as a faculty member at the Cranbrook Institute of Science for 33 years. Known affectionately as the "Birdman of Cranbrook", he was awarded an honorary Doctor of Laws degree by CMU in 1964. CMU's Museum of Cultural and Natural History is honored to hold several bird and bird nest specimens collected by Dr. Nickell.

The Walter P. Nickell Memorial Fund was established by the family of Dr. Nickell to provide scholarships to students pursuing a career in museum natural history work. Student interests or majors are not restricted and all are encouraged to apply, although preference is given to Museum Studies minors. Scholarships are granted to students of good academic standing that are in financial need, and are assisting with projects within the Museum of Cultural and Natural History. Award amounts will be dependent upon the number of awards granted.



The Museum of Cultural and Natural History Internship Program Award is an endowment funded by gifts from Dr. James Schmiechen and Cental Michigan University alumni, staff, retirees, and friends.  Awards will be given to one or more students each year to assist with access to, and participation in, internship opportunities within museums in Michigan, across the United States, and abroad.  This award is non-renewable and award amounts vary based on need.