Delta Waterfowl will offer its University Hunting Program (UHP) at Virginia Tech this year, with support from the 2021 Virginia Wildlife Grant Program through a partnership between the Virginia Department of Wildlife Resources and the Wildlife Foundation of Virginia. The $6,604 grant covers program costs for a UHP course to be delivered in the fall 2022 semester.
Delta’s UHP was designed to address a looming crisis: up to 70% of current university wildlife management students have never hunted and may never have had the opportunity. Delta believes that future wildlife management professionals who understand the relationship between hunting and conservation and who have the chance to experience waterfowl hunting first hand are more likely to maintain a strong position within the wildlife management community as professionals.
Delta launched UHP in 2017 as a fighter recruitment program. It provides students with classroom training, gun safety, and first-hand hunting experience, and gives them a more holistic view of hunting and conservation. Delta Waterfowl covers all costs and organizes all activities associated with the program.
Delta’s ultimate goal is to offer UHP at every university and college in North America that offers a wildlife management program.
“We are very grateful for this support from the Virginia Wildlife Grant Program. With this, Delta can add Virginia Tech to the growing number of schools in North America that offer UHP,” said Joel Brice, director of conservation for Delta Waterfowl. “This program is ideal for students in Tech’s Wildlife Conservation major who want to find new and better ways to conserve, use, and sustain the world’s vital wildlife resources. Even if participants decide not to continue hunting, they gain an understanding and appreciation of the waterfowl hunters’ efforts to conserve birds and protect the future of hunting.
For more information, visit deltawaterfowl.com.