Phil Dube ’16

Land Conservation

What are you up to now?

I work in Portland, Maine for The Trust for Public Land which is a land conservation group. I graduated from Yale in the spring of 2020 with a Masters in Environmental Management, with a focus on water. At The Trust for Public Land, I travel all around Maine visiting land that has the potential to be conserved. In particular, land that can be  conserved for people to explore and hang out.


How has your decision to pursue an Environmental Studies major at Bates impacted your current career?

Throughout my time at Bates, I truly enjoyed the field-based classes, whether it was visits to the beach or cold days at Thorncrag. Along with this, learning how to write reports and conceptualize proposals that connect to land, connects directly to what I do now. I was able to take classes across the fields and explore all my interests and be introduced to Maine landscapes through those classes. I am grateful for my exposure to Maine landscapes, as it contributes so much to what I do now at The Trust For Public Land.

What was the most rewarding aspect of being an Environmental Studies student at Bates?

Definitely the field trips! Trips to Thorncrag, Lakes, the Coast, and local conservations are something I always remember. The ability to work with faculty who knew and could connect to what they were teaching, specifically the physical areas they were teaching, allowed me to learn so much. The approach of the professors intrigued and challenged me in the best ways.

Any fond memories of the Environmental Studies department?

Some of my fondest memories were mostly on field trips in class. One to beaches like Popham beach, along with one that had us walk to the nearby graveyard and measure wear on gravestones. I truly enjoyed the fall excursions, in particular, because of the beauty of Maine during that time. 

Do you have any advice for current students trying to decide on a major or in general?

I would suggest that you find your interests and figure out how you can culminate those interests into the classes you take at Bates. I was interested in podcasts and water, so for my capstone, I made a whole series of podcasts about water markets. Explore opportunities and figure out how to go beyond your requirements to explore your interests. The moment you push the boundaries of your interests is the moment when exciting work happens!