Every year, SCA provides training, tools and projects that place motivated teens and young adults in the field to effect changes great and small. How do we measure the effects? Sometimes its through decreased CO2 levels or by the tons of trash collected or in the number of trees planted. Our success is also measured by the lessons learned, the perspective gained and the lives we transform—today and into the future. Often when the SCA project is over, the success story is just beginning. Take a look at some of our most recent accomplishments.

Wishing NPS a Happy 99th Birthday on the National Mall

Posted by Staff | Wednesday, August 26, 2015

by Kyle Yarusso

What do you do for a good friend for their birthday? Throw them a party, of course!

SCA has been a close friend and partner of the National Park Service (NPS) for almost 60 years. And so, like a good friend, SCA, along with American...

Parks, People, Volunteer Opportunities

Centennial Volunteer Ambassador Courtney Butler

Posted by Staff | Tuesday, August 25, 2015
SCA Cape Cod Crew working at the National Seashore

This July, eight anxious, nervous, and excited high school students arrived here at Cape Cod National Seashore. They, along with their two crew leaders, were selected to be part of an SCA National Crew – and they were lucky enough to spend their time and energy here at the beautiful...

Coasts & Water, People, Science, Sustainability, Trails and Hiking

Elusive Avocets Teach What it Takes to Become a Wildlife Biologist

Posted by Sara Prussing | Monday, August 17, 2015

“I hop out of the truck, net in hand and wader boots pounding the ground. The chicks scatter in different directions to thwart me, but my attention is entirely focused on the farthest of the three. It runs freely above the sulfurous mud, and I follow with a galumphing stride. I start to close the gap and reach out my net, closer, closer… SCHLUMP!”

Adventures, Animals & Wildlife, Backcountry & Wilderness, Career Success, Endangered Species, People, Wetlands

Coming Together to Save a Beloved Butterfly

Posted by Elizabeth Braatz | Monday, August 17, 2015

Community (n):
1. A group of people who live in the same area (such as a city, town, or neighborhood) 1
2. A group of people who have the same interests, religion, race, etc. 1
3. A group of nations1
4. A group of actually or potentially interacting species living...

Animals & Wildlife, Climate, Diversity, Endangered Species, People, Volunteer Opportunities

SCA Intern Jessica Zamudio's job at Yosemite was to Photograph the Stunning Landscape

Posted by Jessica Zamudio | Monday, August 17, 2015

“While the towering granite mountains and amazing waterfalls and rivers were like nothing I’ve ever seen, I personally got an unexpected and wonderful amount of gratification and fulfillment from working with the youth programs in the park.”

Adventures, Animals & Wildlife, Backcountry & Wilderness, Diversity, Education, Parks, People

Funds for work on Calumet River and Indiana Dunes

Posted by Staff | Friday, August 14, 2015

BP America is donating $1 million to the Student Conservation Association for projects on the Calumet River and at Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore. Chicago Mayor Rahm Emmanual joined BP America’s Chairman and President John Minge, SCA’s CEO Jaime Matyas and SCA members for the announcement.

The Santa Fe Trail: Untamed But Not Untrammeled

Posted by Noah M Schlager | Thursday, August 13, 2015

“It is our job as modern conservationists to see the wildness we so value in all places and peoples.”

Adventures, Animals & Wildlife, Backcountry & Wilderness, Education, History, Parks, People, Trails and Hiking

An internship is like a cheese curd for SCA's Ariel Lepito

Posted by Ariel Lepito | Tuesday, August 11, 2015

“Starting off my summer with the FWS was, hear me out on this, sort of like biting into a cheese curd for the first time. I’ve had jobs (and cheese) before, and on paper I knew I would enjoy it.”

Education, Kids, Wetlands

“The goal of life is living in agreement with nature.”

Posted by Staff | Wednesday, August 5, 2015
wildflowers and rainbow at Big Cypress National Preserve. Photo courtesy of BigCypressNPS
by Joshua Kezar, Centennial Volunteer Ambasssador, Big Cypress National Preserve

I ate breakfast this morning on my screened porch overlooking a small pond behind my building.  As I blindly and repeatedly stuck my right hand down toward the bottom of the bag of powdered donuts in my lap, gazing out at...

A Buck Island National Monument Photo Update from Justin Kemp

Posted by Justin Kemp | Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Justin Kemp helps the National Park Service collect field data on endangered sea turtles as an SCA Sea Turtle Intern at Buck Island National Monument. When he’s not sleeping the very odd hours required by night patrol duty (most sea turtle nesting activity takes place under cover of darkness) he spends his free time exploring (and snapping photos of) his temporary island home and its tropical environs.

Check out these photos from his latest adventures.

Adventures, Animals & Wildlife, Coasts & Water, Endangered Species, Parks, People

Posted by Staff | Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Independence National Park — FindYourPark with SCA Centennial Volunteer Ambassador Kristyne Allen

Posted by Staff | Tuesday, August 4, 2015

The SCA Centennial Volunteer Ambassador at Yosemite has found her park.

Posted by Staff | Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Valley Forge National Historical Park’s Centennial Volunteer Ambassador Cristina Ramirez shares her story. Where and when did you find your park? Haven’t found yours yet? Come discover Valley Forge!

Posted by Staff | Tuesday, August 4, 2015

The Centennial Volunteer Ambassadors from DC find their parks, now go find yours!! #findyourpark #nps100sca #scaplanet15


Centennial Volunteer Ambassador Allison Joyce

Posted by Staff | Tuesday, August 4, 2015
The iconic Rosie the Riveter poster alongside a real Rosie at work in Nashville 1943

It all started on Monday when our Superintendent Sue approached me and asked for help with the Rosie Rally. What on God’s Green Earth is a Rosie Rally? Well, hang on to your hats. I’m in my sixth week as an SCA Centennial Volunteer Ambassador at the Rosie the Riveter...

History, Parks, People

Helicopter, Airboats & Wildlife Make for an Exciting Day of Water Quality Monitoring

Posted by Sarika Khanwilkar | Monday, August 3, 2015

I have a confession to make: I’m an adrenaline junkie. The feeling of epinephrine released into my blood—That increased heart rate and heightened sense of awareness as part of an innate response to perceived danger—is euphoric. I’m also a science junkie, and I chose an SCA biology internship because...

Adventures, Career Success, Coasts & Water, Diversity, People, Science, Wetlands

Alaska Field Dispatch by Montana Napier

Posted by Montana Napier | Monday, August 3, 2015
SCA Intern Montana Napier overlooks Wrangell-St. Elias National Park in Alaska through the haze of a wildfire

“The preparedness level of Alaska was 5 out of 5, meaning that “resistance to control is high to extreme and resistance to extinguishment is high.” At the junction between McCarthy and Kennecott, a Smokey the Bear sign sits outside the area’s volunteer fire department headquarters, informing the public of general fire risk. I have watched the sign bounce back and forth between “High” and “Extreme” all season.”

Adventures, Backcountry & Wilderness, Climate, Forests, Parks, People, Wildfires

Cristina Ramirez, Centennial Volunteer Ambassador

Posted by Staff | Monday, August 3, 2015
School Children visiting Valley Forge National Park. Photo credit: Valley Forge National Park

“What battle was fought here?” It’s a question that a lot of the rangers get here at Valley Forge National Historical Park. I’ve never been asked, since as a Centennial Volunteer Ambassador I play a more behind-the-scenes role working with the volunteer coordinator and our Volunteers-In-Parks (VIPs).  But I was...

History, Parks

Posted by Staff | Monday, August 3, 2015

Hitch 7 is tough. Us corps members are tired out from a long few months of trail work. The heat and humidity at the end of July is oppressive. Bugs are stinging, ticks are embedding, poison ivy is thriving. We can’t help but think about the future; it’s tough to...

SCA Intern Ariel Lupito grapples with Wisconsin Wildlife

Posted by Ariel Lepito | Friday, July 31, 2015
SCA Intern Ariel Lepito identifying an endangered Wild Lupine

“I soon noticed a pattern in the naming process: trait + body part + animal = common name. For example, there’s the red-winged blackbird, the redheaded woodpecker, the large-mouth bass, the yellow-faced bee, the white-tailed deer… They really tell it like it is!”

Animals & Wildlife, Education, Endangered Species, Sustainability, Wetlands


Our 2015 Summer Roadtrip takes you to amazing places and member stories around the country.

75000 Members have served with SCA

Over 75,000 women and men have served with SCA - read some of their stories here.

Read about the women and men who helped build America’s oldest and largest youth conservation service organization here

Meet some of the amazing women who blazed a trail with SCA

Member Bloggers

Rachelle Hedges
San Mateo County Parks
See Posts by Rachelle Hedges
Sarika Khanwilkar
Hobe Sound National Wildlife Refuge
See Posts by Sarika Khanwilkar
Elizabeth Braatz
St. Croix Wetland Management District
See Posts by Elizabeth Braatz
Noah M Schlager
National Trails Intermountain Region
See Posts by Noah M Schlager
Dakota McCoy
Yosemite National Park
See Posts by Dakota McCoy
Ariel Lepito
Necedah National Wildlife Refuge
See Posts by Ariel Lepito
Jessica Zamudio
Yosemite National Park
See Posts by Jessica Zamudio

Staff Bloggers

Ann Pedtke
New York City
See posts by Ann Pedtke
Joseph Thurston
Washington, DC
See posts by Joseph Thurston

Alumni Stories

Where will SCA take you?

“Something different” is what Jessica Aronson Cook was looking for when she first joined the Student Conservation Association (SCA) as...
Mary Nghe and Stacey Kinney -- two CDIP Interns with the Student Conservation Association
Growing up in Houston, Stacey Kinney says she only saw ducks on office park ponds. Now, here she was at...

New findings on SCA's youth impact - read about the Search Institute's study

A new multi-year study on SCA’s youth impact shows significant gains across a wide range of indicators.
Read about the Study here »

Michelle Bobowick, Interning with SCA in Yellowstone National Park, 1985
It was 1958, when our family affair with the Student Conservation Association began. Since, then our family has continued its commitment to improving the world around us through SCA.
During the summer of ’69, twenty students arrived at Great Smokey Mountains National Park ready to clear windfall damage in...
When Student Conservation Association (SCA) supporter and 1983 alumnus, Bob Kachinski, was fresh out of college, he went on what...

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