Support my Master's & I'll Pay-it-Forward!

A project by: Julien Stevens


WE RAISED £7,424

from 53 donors

This project received pledges on Mon 25 May 2015
Fund my MSc Degree in Sustainable Aquaculture and I'll Pay-it-Forward through Community Service!

Hello! I'm Julien Stevens, and I’m raising £14,500 to pay for a Master's Degree in Sustainable Aquaculture from the University of Stirling, in Scotland, one of the leading university aquaculture programs in the world. 

With your contributions, I will learn how to protect our beautiful ocean ecosystems through sustainable aquaculture practices, and develop healthy seafood for our families and future generations.

In order to demonstrate my commitment to community development I’ll be paying your donations forward through acts of community service.  

I love marine ecosystems. Sustainable aquaculture is my way of protecting them for future generations, and that is what really inspires me!

My Story

I received my BA from the University of Hawaii-Hilo, where I studied Marine Science and Biology, worked as a research assistant, lab assistant, scientific diver, and co-published research on the impacts of ozone air pollutants.

Currently, I’m a New Zealand resident and Outdoor Educator working in the Marlborough Sounds. It was here that I developed a passion for aquaculture, one of the primary industries of New Zealand.

I plan to focus my aquaculture studies on environmental and social stewardship, which is why the University of Stirling, with its internationally respected Institute of Aquaculture and strong focus on sustainability is such a great fit.

In my career as an Outdoor Educator, I've had the privilege of working for values based organisations such as Outward Bound, who work to strengthen local communities. I plan on taking the leadership skills I've gained and applying them to this new path of sustainable aquaculture.

Here’s where you come in!

As an international student there are very few scholarships, grants, or loans available. My partner and I will be fully committing our savings to this study program, but even with the Scottish scholarships I qualify for, it’s not enough. So, I’m asking for your support in funding the remainder of the program and living costs: £14,500.

Where will the money go?

Here is a price break-down for my Master’s degree (click the figures to see where they come from).

    Tuition & fees - £16,600  
    Living expenses - £8,400 
    Travel from New Zealand - £1200
    UK Visa costs - £310 
Total Program Cost:  £26,510  ($39,322 USD ; $52,813 NZD)

    Personal Savings - £10,500 
    University Scholarship - £2000
Savings & Scholarships: £12,500 ($18,540 USD ; $24,675 NZD)

Total Program Cost
 minus Savings & Scholarships = £14,010 + Paypal Fees = £14,500 Total Funds Needed!

    £14,500  =  $21,505 USD  =   $28,655 NZD 

I’d be so grateful for ANY support you can give in helping me to reach this goal. With a little support from a lot of people, this goal is very achievable!


As a way of saying thank you for your generosity, I’ll pay forward your donation through community serviceEvery £30 of pledges will go towards 1 hour of community service! How cool is that? Project updates will be shared through my facebook page.

Projects will include environmental clean ups, community salsa classes, and tutoring and mentoring. I've chosen these areas of service because they are ways in which I already give, and I know the awesome outcomes that are possible. For example, over the past seven years I've taught over 200 people to dance for free! Not only is it a whole lot of fun, but it's a great community building activity.


I'm excited to continue coaching and mentoring as part of my pay-it-forward service. As an outdoor educator I have experience working with people of all ages and backgrounds. Past service projects have included sports coaching, high school (secondary school) tutoring, youth leadership programs, nature walks, and white-water paddling.

As you might have figured out by now, I am a nature lover, and really enjoy time spent preserving and protecting our natural environments. Past environmental service includes: river and beach clean-ups, volunteer park ranger, trail building and maintenance, tree-planting, and wildlife monitoring.

On top of the community service, check out the other great rewards for supporting my educational goals (above right). Community service projects will be ongoing for the next three years, check out my Facebook project page to get regular updates.

You can Find me here - for Pay-it-Forward and fundraising updates  - for fundraising updates and sustainable aquaculture ideas

Blog: - my sustainable aquaculture blog.

Please follow me to get updates on my fundraising progress and service projects! 

Help us succeed!

Thank you very much for support! If you like what I’m doing then please share it, like it, tweet it, and send it to friends and family. Remember: With a little bit of support from a lot of people this financial goal is very achievable!