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.

Posted by Staff | Wednesday, August 29, 2018
Osprey Falls Trailhead at Yellowstone National Park by Jacob W. Frank, NPS

Park rangers are the smiling, friendly, informative folks in uniform we see at the visitor’s center or on the trails of our favorite public lands. They interact with the public on a daily basis and occasionally must deal with people breaking rules or being disrespectful. Let’s give them a hand....

Adventures, Backcountry & Wilderness, Forests, Parks, Trails and Hiking

Posted by Staff | Friday, August 24, 2018
Chaco Culture National Historic Park by Karen Blaha

Going to work each day at some of the nation’s most significant and iconic lands is quite a feeling. And the competition for jobs with the National Park Service is a reflection of that. That’s where internships with the Student Conservation Assocaiton (SCA) — in partnership with national parks —...

Backcountry & Wilderness, Parks, Science, Trails and Hiking

Posted by Kevin Hamilton | Monday, August 20, 2018
All summer long, the SCA crew at Tongass National Forest worked an alternating schedule: one week of long, arduous days replacing a fading fish pass on Kupreanof Island, and the next in nearby Petersburg. Fortunately, they were in town when Chuck Najimy and Lane Bagley flew in on consecutive days...

Posted by Staff | Thursday, August 9, 2018
Gulf Coast Katrina Recovery Intern

The tragedy of a natural disaster unfolds in multiple ways. First and foremost, there are the irreplaceable lives lost. Then, for survivors, there is the trauma of dealing with damaged or destroyed property, ruined livelihoods, and – in the worst cases – the prospect of having to uproot or relocate....

Coasts & Water, Forests, Parks, Volunteer Opportunities, Wildfires

Posted by Staff | Thursday, August 9, 2018
Camp on Shi Shi Beach by Bre Jané

Bre Jané writes about backpacking along the Olympic Coast with her SCA crew learning everything from wilderness skills to marine science—and the realities of plastic pollution.

Landlocked for my whole life not a single bone in my Midwestern body was exposed to the importance of the ocean. In

Adventures, Backcountry & Wilderness, Coasts & Water, Education, Sustainability, Trails and Hiking

SCA, Cuyahoga Valley, and Nestlé Partner to Remove Invasives

Posted by Ally Ratliff | Wednesday, August 8, 2018

On Thursday, August 2nd, Nestlé gathered at Terra Vista Natural Study Area alongside SCA and Cuyahoga Valley National Park to continue a seemingly never-ending battle with invasive species. More than 140 participants came together to remove over 60,000 square feet of invasive autumn olive and honeysuckle! This was no small...

Forests, Invasives, Parks, Volunteer Opportunities

Posted by Staff | Tuesday, August 7, 2018
SCA Interns Serving at Huron WMD in South Dakota

SCA interns Sophie Kline and Carol Gause write about their experiences serving at a haven for migratory birds with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service this summer.

We are students from North Carolina and Florida spending our summer out in the prairies of South Dakota with the U.S....

Animals & Wildlife, People, Science, Wetlands

Posted by Staff | Monday, July 30, 2018
Brandywine Falls at Cuyahoga Valley National Park

Nearly 50 years ago, the Cuyahoga River in northeast Ohio caught fire. Although this was not the first occurrence of its kind – the river had caught fire some 13 times since 1868 due to spill-off from the steel mills and factories stretching between Akron and Cleveland – this...

Coasts & Water, Parks, People, Trails and Hiking, Volunteer Opportunities

Posted by Staff | Monday, July 30, 2018
Hiker admiring the Tetons by Allyson McCarthy.

There’s nothing like a bracing hike to get our blood pumping and our senses filled with the sights and sounds of nature. Fortunately, there’s plenty to choose from: with a network of nearly 60,000 miles, America’s National Trails System is longer than the Interstate Highway System!

Alas, no outdoor...

Adventures, Backcountry & Wilderness, Trails and Hiking

Posted by Staff | Monday, July 30, 2018
1969 Olympic National Park Crew

We recently asked our alumni to tell us their SCA stories, and did they ever! We were so moved by what they had to say that we want to start sharing them with you. Each month we will add a new one as well as link to those that have...

Adventures, History, Parks, People, Trails and Hiking

Posted by Kevin Hamilton | Friday, July 27, 2018

The thing you hear most often from SCA alumni is “those X weeks changed my life.”

Nature’s marvels, self-discovery, and a strong sense of accomplishment are all factors in these transformations, but the influence of conservation professionals is also paramount. Those who invest the time to mentor, instruct, advise, encourage, test,...

Posted by Staff | Tuesday, July 17, 2018
Protect oceans and marine life by reducing plastic waste and using reef safe sunblock.

Posted by Staff | Friday, July 13, 2018
European Paper Wasp by Dan Mullen

In Part I of our guide, we taught you how to identify bumble bees and honey bees—two of our most critical pollinators (and pretty nonaggressive, to boot!). In Part II we will explore the other common stinging critters in the U.S., teaching you how to identify them and...

Adventures, Animals & Wildlife, Backcountry & Wilderness, Education, Science, Trails and Hiking

SCA alum Ian Vogel is now a biologist with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service!

Posted by Staff | Tuesday, July 10, 2018
Yosemite Toad by Rick Kuyper, USFWS

Ian Vogel participated in the Directorate Fellowship Program with the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service in the summer of 2016 through SCA and is now a wildlife biologist with the Sacramento Fish and Wildlife Office. He assists with collecting Yosemite toad eggs for two different captive rearing projects.

Animals & Wildlife, Career Success, People, Science

Posted by Kevin Hamilton | Monday, July 9, 2018

Things sure have changed since their dads made this trek a quarter century ago.

Cal Najimy and Steve Bagley are part of an SCA team on the Alaska Panhandle, replacing an elaborate fish pass in Tongass National Forest. They are literally following in the footsteps (and airstreams) of their fathers,...

Posted by Staff | Friday, July 6, 2018
Bumblebees on a flower.

Is that stinging critter a bee, yellow jacket, wasp, or hornet? It’s natural to feel worried when you see stinging insects buzzing around your backyard or barbecue in the park, but many of them are relatively harmless—and are important pollinators. In Part I, we’ll help you learn to identify bees,...

Animals & Wildlife, Backcountry & Wilderness, Education, Endangered Species, Trails and Hiking

Posted by Staff | Thursday, July 5, 2018
Female brown-headed cowbird by Barry Cruver.

Writeen by Sarantia Mitsinikos, an Invasive Species Project Steward with the SCA Hudson Valley Corps. She is currently serving a 10 month position at New York’s Minnewaska State Park.

The Invasive Species Field Office at Minnewaska State Park gained a new member early this spring. An eastern...

Animals & Wildlife, Education, Invasives

Posted by Staff | Tuesday, July 3, 2018
Lost Lake trail in Chugach National Forest in Alaska by Shanice Bailey

Nature in America’s national parks, refuges, and protected spaces is a profusion of color: from the purple-pink rhododendrons in the Great Smoky Mountains to the palette of reds, tans, and oranges on the south rim of the Grand Canyon, from the steel blues and grays of Glacier...

Backcountry & Wilderness, Parks, People, Trails and Hiking

Boots on the Ground at Taku Lake Park

Posted by Ally Ratliff | Wednesday, June 27, 2018

June 21st, the longest day of the year, is quite a unique experience in Alaska. The Great Land celebrates this day with live music, gatherings with friends and families, and in the great outdoors. The sun never seems to set here. On this year’s summer solstice, CIRI and SCA teamed...

Forests, Invasives, Kids, Parks, Volunteer Opportunities

Posted by Staff | Wednesday, June 27, 2018
Peter Winfrey Along the Dalton Highway in Northern Alaska

As a history major at Loyola University New Orleans, Peter Winfrey didn’t expect his career would lead him to the National Park Service (NPS). He definitely didn’t think it would take him to the largest and one of the wildest states in the country: Alaska.

Yet, after years of volunteering, an...

Career Success, Education, Parks, People