Student Conservation Association’s Northwest Program Receives Prestigious National Park Service Award


Seattle community crew program earns NPS Director’s Partnership Award for its work at Mount Rainier National Park

WASHINGTON D.C. – OCTOBER 7, 2014 – The Student Conservation Association (SCA), the national leader in youth service and stewardship, announced today that its Seattle community crew program, which launched 30 years ago, received the National Park Service (NPS) Director’s Partnership Award for its service at Mount Rainier National Park. Since 1984, more than 750 teens have participated in the community crew program at Rainier, and in the past 10 years alone, students have contributed a total of 29,600 hours of service at the park.

NPS Director Jonathan B. Jarvis introduced the Partnership Award in 2013; it recognizes the most significant accomplishments achieved by parks and outside groups working together on projects, programs and commemorative events that provide lasting benefits for parks and communities. SCA is a partner of Mount Rainier, providing high school students from the region with park and community experiences meant to foster a future commitment to conservation and stewardship.

“We’re proud to aid the National Park Service in its mission to preserve and protect our nation’s cherished parks. Our community crews are a critical component of that mission, because they nurture and instill a love of parks and outdoor spaces among young people,” said SCA President Jaime Berman Matyas. “It’s an honor to be recognized for the lasting connection that SCA has made between Seattle teens and Mount Rainier. It’s also gratifying that many young people who served on community crews at Mount Rainier over the past 30 years are today career employees at national parks in the Seattle region and across the country.”

SCA was founded in Washington State in 1957 at Olympic National Park. The Seattle community crew program was created in 1984 as an initiative to develop opportunities for under-served teenagers to participate in conservation leadership. Over 100 students from inner city Seattle and Edmonds, and Joint Base Lewis McChord and Naval Base Kitsap serve each summer in supervised teams, , making improvements to Seattle parklands and working a special two-week shift at Mount Rainier. During the school year, participating students learn about their environment and conservation service through field trips and camping expeditions that expose them green jobs and career opportunities.

For more information, contact Elana Widmann at 212.576.2700 and [email protected]

About the Student Conservation Association:

The Student Conservation Association (SCA) transforms lives and lands to ensure America’s natural legacy. SCA empowers young people from every corner of the nation to plan, act, and lead while they protect and restore our natural and cultural resources. SCA members provide two million hours of service each year, from national parks to leading cities, to aid endangered species, conduct field research, provide environmental education and more. Founded in 1957, SCA launched the nation’s youth conservation movement with the promise to build new generations of conservation leaders. Today, analyses show SCA’s hands-on engagement creates thriving youth by enhancing personal growth, inspiring lifelong stewardship, and providing pathways to productive careers. And seven in 10 of SCA’s 75,000 alumni worldwide remain active in conservation through their professions, studies or volunteer activities. SCA is a nonprofit organization headquartered in Washington, DC, with regional offices in Charlestown, NH, Chicago, IL, Houston, TX, Oakland, CA, Pittsburgh, PA and Seattle, WA. For further information, visit

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