Washington, DC

The summer of 2019 marked the 23rd anniversary of SCA programs in Washington, DC. To date, over 2,000 SCA high school students ages 15-19 from both urban and suburban neighborhoods in the capital region have built and maintained trails, constructed boardwalks, managed invasive species and completed countless other projects. Thousands more (ages 5-19) have participated in environmental education activities with SCA DC’s Urban Tree House Program and participated in community service projects in the region. For the past 20 plus years, with generous support from donors, the SCA has provided students from the District of Columbia, Virginia, and Maryland the opportunity to serve their broader community by completing conservation projects in national, state, and regional parks and participating in valuable curriculum-based environmental education activities.

The SCA DC Community Program provides year-round conservation opportunities divided into two seasons: school-year programs (running January through May) and summer programs (this year running June through August). The Washington DC Community Program offers both volunteer and paid service opportunities. Volunteer programs typically occur on weekends year round, while paid service programs run Monday-Friday in the summertime, fall, and spring. Members serve at sites in and around the Metropolitan DC Area. Participants build trails and restore habitat while exploring green career opportunities, building leadership skills, and learning about the local environment through field trips, outdoor recreation, and camping trips, and complete community service projects. 

The DC Community Program also provides a valuable environmental education resource for youth in the Metropolitan DC Area. The Urban Tree House Program is the SCA’s environmental education center located in Anacostia Park in Southeast Washington, DC – a site generously provided by National Park Service’s National Capital Parks-East. For over 18years, SCA staff has provided free environmental education programs and activities for DC-area K-12 youth on a number of topics, including urban ecosystems and watersheds, waste and recycling, conservation and sustainability, environmental ethics, wildlife, and ecology. UTH programs include hands-on and interactive components to complement an active outdoor environmental curriculum.  

Training Offered: 

  • Resume Building       
  • Leave No Trace (LNT) Outdoor Ethics
  • Project WET/Project WILD Training
  • Financial Literacy
  • Habitat Restoration
  • Trail Skills
  • CPR

Key Partners:

  • D.C. Aquatic Resource Education Center (AREC) 
  • District Department of Transportation (DDOT)
  • District Department of the Environment (DDOE)
  • National Capital Parks-East (NACE)
  • US Forest Service 
  • National Park Service (NPS)
  • Rails to Trails
  • Maryland National Capital Parks and Planning Commission 

Eligibility Requirements: 

Applicants must be at least 15 years of age and currently in high school or recently garduated to participate in high school programs. For our young adult programs applicants must be 18 years or age or older. Other requirements vary by position.

To contact SCA’s Community Program in Washington, DC, email [email protected].


Currently Accepting Applications For:


SCA’s DC Area Virtual Crew Program

This summer SCA will be hosting a virtual program, given the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. This program gives high school students a unique opportunity to develop their interest in the environmental world, meet new people, learn about potential career paths, and create their own advocacy project. This 5 week program follows a curriculum which focuses on a theme for each week. These themes are; teambuilding, environmental literacy, environmental justice, career exploration, and advocacy & action. Members will meet with their crew twice a week on either Monday and Wednesdays or Tuesday and Thursdays. These meeting will take place through the Zoom platform and will run 2.5- 3 hours. There will be some independent work members are expected to complete outside of the group meetings. Members should expect to commit 7 hours per week to the program, including the daily meeting times. At the end of the program each member will have developed a capstone project which they will present to the group. There is no in-person component to the program. All programming will take place virtually.


Program Dates: July 5- August 6, 2021

Meeting Schedule: Monday and Wednesday OR Tuesday and Thursday from 12pm- 3pm

Pay rate: Earn a $350 stipend upon completion of the program

Qualifications: Must be a current high school student or have graduated in 2021

*If accepted into the program you MUST be available for all meeting dates and times. If accepted you will be able to indicate a preference for the Mon/Wed or Tue/Thurs meetings.*


Application deadline is May 7, 2021. Applicants will be informed after the deadline if they have been accepted into the program. 


How to Apply:

New to SCA? Follow these instructions to apply

Already have an SCA application? Follow these application instructions


If you have any questions about the program or application process, please contact [email protected].