Massachusetts Corps

Members of the Student Conservation Association's Massachusetts Corps for 2014-2015, based at Kenneth Duguque Memorial State Forest, braving the inclement weather

Massachusetts AmeriCorps

Members of the SCA Massachusetts AmeriCorps program serve Massachusetts’s public lands from Martha’s Vineyard to the Berkshires each summer, and spend the winter providing environmental education to children at local schools in the western part of the state. The residential program, headquartered at Kenneth Dubuque Memorial State Forest in Hawley, MA, began its 18th year of service in October 2014.

SCA Massachusetts AmeriCorps members begin their 10-month terms serving at partner schools and education-related internships in Western Massachusetts during the fall and winter months. They engage students in science-based environmental curricula that create a broad learning context for students, improve their learning skills, and help foster an ethic of service and civic responsibility. In the spring and summer, SCA Massachusetts AmeriCorps members provide much-needed assistance in improving the public access to and protection of the natural, cultural, and recreational resources of Massachusetts. SCA members travel across the commonwealth serving in small teams to complete more than 40 conservation projects per year, implemented in dozens of communities.

Members of the Massachusetts Corps receive or have the option to receive the following trainings or certifications: 

  • Wilderness First Responder Training
  • CPR Certification
  • Wilderness Work Skills
  • Leadership Skills
  • Education Skills

Each year SCA Massachusetts AmeriCorps members spend five months teaching approximately 800 environmental education lessons to over 1,000 students. Our members also complete approximately 60 Conservation Service projects each year. Projects include new trail construction, invasive plant management, Universal Access Trail construction, school nature trails, historic site reclamation, and more.

Eligibility Requirements:

  • Applicants must be between the ages of 18 and 25.
  • Applicants must be US citizens, as we are an AmeriCorps program.
  • Applicants should be in good physical condition and should enjoy hard work outdoors.
  • Applicants should possess the ability to live and work in small, close-knit group.
  • Applicants must have good interpersonal communication skills. 
  • Outdoors or trail experience preferred but not necessary.

Members receive full room and board, health insurance, a weekly living stipend, and an AmeriCorps education award.

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17 February 2015

0800 Electronic mail received from Melissa Patterson containing call to service.

0801 Daniel Dobrosielski, Emily Palmer, Nathan Salle, and Sophie Stern respond via electronic mail to service call.

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Driving into the city of Boston for the first time on Wednesday reminded me of all of wonderful the commuter traffic, which I left in DC to go live in Western Massachusetts to serve with SCA Massachusetts AmeriCorps. It felt a little bit like home for the first half an hour or so.

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Here at SCA Massachusetts AmeriCorps, our teaching season is in full swing. I and many of my fellow corps members find ourselves teaching all kinds of science lessons in elementary schools, from electricity and magnetism, light and sound, to animal adaptations, or composting.

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January is always misconstrued as something boring, dead, and lifeless, and… and dull… something along those lines. For anyone who believes this, I invite you to visit Hawley. One needs only to awake at dawn and take a walk around the pond to see life everywhere. You see miniscule mouse footprints with a thin line from a dragging tail in the snow….”Um, are chickadees still around?” a voice next to me asks.

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As a result of comfort and familiarity, and also attachment and ownership, I’d say your second visit someplace, or your third or fourth and so on, always looks very different from the first time you see a new place. After flying over eight states and driving through two more, I pulled into the driveway at SCA Massachusetts AmeriCorps a little over two months ago for the first time.

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Parents Corner

Your child is about to embark on a life-changing experience, where they will have the opportunity to meet new friends, explore potential careers, gain leadership skills, and accomplish hands-on conservation work that will have a lasting impact on the planet.