MCLA Sophomore Receives $5,000 State Scholarship; One of Five Women in the Commonwealth

In just her second year at MCLA, Veronica Nault ‘26 is one of five women to receive a statewide scholarship to support her college career.

Nault is a recipient of the Massachusetts Commission on the Status of Women (MCSW) scholarship program to support emerging leaders of the Commonwealth in continuing their education journey to leadership and economic empowerment. Each recipient is awarded $5,000 for tuition, fees, books, and related supplies or equipment for study. Roughly 200 students applied this year.



“Given that only five women in the state are chosen, I was very honored,” Nault said. “It’s such a huge help to have a scholarship like this because for a long time I didn’t know if I’d be able to go to college.”

Applicants must be a woman-identifying student having completed at least one year towards their degree and currently enrolled in an accredited degree program at a Massachusetts Public Higher Education Institution. The scholarship is funded by the MCSW Trust Fund.

Outside of the scholarship, Nault is widely involved in nature-related groups and projects throughout campus. She is the vice president of the outdoors club, president of the gardening club, and an environmental studies research technician for work-study. Nault is studying biology with an environmental science concentration and hopes to pursue a career in ecology or conservation after college. She said nature has always been a big part of her life.

“Growing up in Hampden County, my parents raised us to learn all the plants and animals around us,” she said. “I was always playing in the forests behind my house, so it’s always been the right track for me.”

This spring Nault enrolled in the Tropical Ecology travel course funded by a scholarship where she investigated the biology of tropical ecosystems and the social issues that impact them. At the Undergraduate Research Conference this year, she presented research from a long-term study about salamander populations and how they change over time.

This semester Nault will complete her internship with Environmental Science Professor Shustack's banding birds and tracking migration patterns in the MCLA Forest. Next, she’s spending the summer in North Dakota to intern at the Chase Lake National Wildlife Refuge monitoring invasive plants and surveying American white pelicans.