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Claire Vaage

Claire Joan Vaage

Degree: Bachelor of Arts in Environmental Studies and a Minor in Biology

Future Plans: Pursue a Ph.D. at the University of Washington’s School of Aquatic and Fishery Sciences to study and inform the conservation of threatened and endangered Pacific salmonids.

Honored Faculty: Dr. Jared Talley, Clinical Assistant Professor of Environmental Studies

Scholarships: Dean’s Scholarship, Langroise Honors Scholarship, Capital Scholar Textbook Scholarship, Philanthropic Education Organization STAR Scholarship, Ruth McBriney, Idaho Opportunity Scholarship, GLO Scholarship, Robert & Brenda Atkinson

For Claire Vaage, environmental conservation is the name of the game. Growing up in the Gem State led her to appreciate its diverse ecosystems and inspired her to become a leader for conservation in the West. 

Her natural curiosity led her to conduct undergraduate research with the Idaho Historic Preservation Council and the Governor’s Office of Species Conservation, and work as a rangeland technician with Oregon State University. She has also been a Higher Education Research Council fellow in the Caughlin Lab, a quantitative ecology laboratory within the Boise State Department of Biological Sciences. In her third year at Boise State, she served as president for both her Honors College house and the Boise State Young Democrats, with a goal of enabling fellow students to connect with one another and the broader Treasure Valley community. 

The Andrus Center for Public Policy selected her as an Andrus Scholar in her third year, and she continued her land stewardship by partnering with the Bureau of Land Management. Across federal, state and private groups, she has come to grasp a multitude of perspectives that support a pathway between scientific knowledge and real-world action.

On campus, she has been an educator at the Boise State Cycle Learning Center, and for three of her four years at Boise State, she has been a student lead and Mountain Monday Ride Leader. She has taught bicycle maintenance skills, trail care, and riding techniques to her fellow students and the public. 

In the spring of 2021, Claire studied abroad at the University of Agder in Norway, where she learned theoretical and practical concepts for outdoor education.

After graduation, Claire will continue her involvement in environmental science and management by pursuing fisheries and freshwater ecology. She hopes to contribute to vital scientific discoveries, promote equity in academia and STEM fields, and inspire the next generation of ecologists through a career in research and teaching.

Claire Vaage is from Boise, Idaho.

Meet other Top Ten Scholars.


What is a top ten scholar

Presented by the Boise State Alumni Association and Boise State Honors College, the Top Ten Scholar Award is one of the highest academic honors granted to a Boise State University undergraduate student. Each spring the recipients are recognized, along with their honored faculty, at the annual Top Ten Scholars Award Ceremony.

Meet Other Top Ten Scholars

Join the Celebration

Please join us for the 40th Anniversary of Boise State University’s Annual Top Ten Scholars Awards Ceremony on Thursday, May 5, 2022, at 4:30 p.m. in the Stueckle Sky Center.

Top Ten Scholars alumni and their honored faculty are invited to a reunion reception at 3 p.m. in the Loft (5th floor of the Stueckle Sky Center).

Registration to attend in person is now closed. However, join us for the live stream!

Support Student Excellence

The Boise State Alumni Association connects, celebrates and engages alumni and friends of the University to build lifelong relationships that support the future of our University. As part of our guiding values, we as alumni and your association, support students through several scholarships managed by the alumni association. Become a scholarship donor to support future members of the Bronco Family.

Become a donor to support student excellence at Boise State.