SCI Foundation Joins The Duck Hunters Organization as Champion of Delta and Supporting Partner of UHP

$50,000 donation will aid Delta’s efforts to create hunters and educate future wildlife managers on the role of hunting in conservation

SCI Foundation Joins The Duck Hunters Organization as Champion of Delta and Supporting Partner of UHP

(From left) SCI Sables president Susan Hayes and SCI Foundation president Brook Minx presented $50,000 in supporting partnership of the Delta Waterfowl University Hunting Program to Delta board member Rosemary Mcllhenny and development director Scott Vance.

Safari Club International Foundation and Sables have joined Delta Waterfowl as a Champion of Delta corporate sponsor and made a $50,000 donation as a supporting partner of Delta’s University Hunting Program. The donation was presented at the Safari Club International Convention in Nashville, Tennessee.

The mission of SCI Foundation—also a 501(c)(3) non-profit—is to ensure the future of wildlife through conservation, education, and hunting. Since 2000, SCI Foundation has provided more than $80 million to promote science-based conservation through wildlife research worldwide.

“We are excited to be a supporting partner of Delta Waterfowl’s University Hunting Program,” said Brook Minx, president of the SCI Foundation. “The program is in line with our SCIF Education Department, which is committed to helping fulfill the SCIF mission by providing education programs that teach about conservation, wildlife management, outdoor recreation, and the integral role hunters and hunting play in conservation and wildlife management.”

Delta’s UHP introduces university students pursuing wildlife management degrees to waterfowl hunting with the hope that they will continue the pursuit on their own and gives them an appreciation of the vital role of hunting in conservation. It’s estimated that as many as 70% of today’s college students studying to become tomorrow’s wildlife management professionals have no experience or personal connection to hunting. The comprehensive Delta UHP takes participants through hunter safety training, shooting skills development, a mentored hunt, preparation of birds for the table, and a post-hunt meal. During the 2023-2024 waterfowl season, the program reached students at more than 100 colleges and universities throughout the United States and Canada.

“Our University Hunting Program is an important brick in our HunteR3 pillar, working to recruit, retain, and reactivate hunters,” said Joel Brice, Delta’s chief conservation officer. “The program fills an essential curriculum gap at many of these universities, and through a first-time, hands-on experience hunting waterfowl, we can demonstrate the critical role hunting plays in conservation to those who will one day manage these resources. The UHP goal is to make these students waterfowl hunters as well as informed decision-makers in their careers as wildlife managers.”

Delta’s UHP is projected to continue its growth trajectory in the coming years with a goal of delivering the program at all of the nearly 500 North American colleges and universities with wildlife-sciences programs. SCI Foundation also anticipates an increase in their donations as a supporting partner of Delta Waterfowl and this highly successful hunter recruitment program.

“We are extremely grateful for the support of SCI Foundation,” said John Davis, Delta’s senior vice president of development. “This gift signifies a shared belief that hunting plays a critically important role in our North American Model of Wildlife Management and considerably increases our ability to reach young wildlife professionals with an inspiring experience afield. Delta extends its deepest appreciation for the SCI Foundation’s support and commitment.” —Christy Sweigart