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


Program dates

Env. Education and Conservation Stewards:
Oct 19th 2015 – Aug 19th 2016
Conservation Stewards:
March 7th 2016 – Aug 19th 2016
Number of members: 26
Env. Education & Conservation Stewards: 18
Conservation Stewards: 8
When application review will begin:
2016 Conservation Stewards:
December 2015
2016-2017 Env. Education &
Conservation Stewards: March 2016

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 19th year of service in October 2015.


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.

Related Posts & Program Information

Our team started our Conservation Season with a pretty challenging first project. The location: Middlesex Fells Reserve – a large reserve ten miles north of Boston. The project: install stone steps on a 100 foot portion of the Skyline trail. From the beginning, we knew that we wouldn’t be able to lay 100 feet of stones in 5 days. I spoke with our State contact about this and he agreed that the project was ambitious for the period of time.

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            I am a gripper of the hoist. That means that my specialty skill is rigging, using a griphoist to set up highlines and/or draglines to move heavy objects like boulders that would be otherwise too difficult to move. Our motto is “Slow and boring!” mostly because if we mess up, boulders can go crashing through the forest, wreaking havoc wherever they may!

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           Each morning, my teaching partner Nathan and I drive to Florida, Massachusetts to begin teaching at Gabriell Abbott Memorial School. It is a forty-minute drive, through twists and turns, down many hills and then up a mountain. Sometimes we get stuck behind a school bus or mailperson. Other times, there is a car behind us, frustrated with our slow moving van.

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           New England winters are tough: freezing temperatures, multiple feet of snow just piled high on the ground at all times, bitter winds that rip through your down jacket like you weren’t even wearing one. What really makes it tough though is how hard it is to be active. I do my fair share of playing in the snow and sledding and can sneak in a run every now and then, but what I miss the most is being able to going out on bike rides.

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A not so unusual Friday here in Hawley, when the Emma L. Miller Elementary School joined us for the day. The 4th and 5th graders built this quinzhee hut as a part of our wilderness survival lesson for them. This quinzhee is a hollowed out mound of snow that as many as four students squeezed inside. Here at SCA Massachusetts AmeriCorps, we’re all about bringing environmental education to kids through the simple joy of being outside (or inside a mound of snow)!



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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.