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.

Leah Duran, NPS Park Guide & SCA Alum, on Serving in the Wilderness & the City

Posted by Joseph Thurston | Tuesday, January 20, 2015
SCA Alum Leah Duran is currently a NPS employee at San Fransicso Maritime National Historic Park

Leah Duran is a three-time SCA alum who just finished a three-year stint on SCA’s Alumni Council. Soon after serving with SCA she began working for the National Park Service, first at Lassen Volcanic National Park, then at John Muir National Historic Site, and now at San...

Adventures, Animals & Wildlife, Backcountry & Wilderness, Career Success, Forests, History, Parks, Trails and Hiking

by SCA Member Alyssa Stegmaier

Posted by Joseph Thurston | Tuesday, January 20, 2015
This post was written for Open Spaces, the official blog of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service....
Animals & Wildlife, Education, Kids, Parks, Wetlands

Quincy Swatson Feeds Fish, Minds, & Even Dreams with Aquaponics

Posted by Joseph Thurston | Thursday, December 18, 2014

Sometimes opportunity knocks. Other times it swims and poops, providing nutrients for the plants growing atop its aquarium. SCA alum Quincy Swatson is determined to establish the latter, more rarefied kind of opportunity in the place where he grew up, Pittsburgh’s often troubled Manchester neighborhood.

Quincy’s childhood coincided with Manchester’s ’90s...

Working Together to Strengthen the Future of Conservation

Posted by Joseph Thurston | Monday, December 15, 2014
SCA Alternative Spring Break program in Ventura CA 2013 - Volunteer planting native grasses

SCA and its members are Moving Conservation Forward. What does that mean? It means they’re gaining the experience they need to be tomorrow’s conservation leaders. It means they’re finding new ways to tackle our biggest environmental challenges. It means they’re forging ahead, realizing their goals to improve the world...

Passing on a passion for the wild

Posted by Staff | Monday, December 15, 2014
Members of the Weaver family, all in service with the SCA: Kathy and Scott, two of their children: Johanna and Travis, and Johanna, right

The Student Conservation Association has been a part of my family since the day I was born. Indeed, I truly was an SCA baby: my mom and dad met working in Yosemite National Park back in the ‘70s, and eventually wound up leading SCA crews every summer in the backcountry....

An Adventure in Duck-Banding with SCA Intern Stacey Kinney

Posted by Staff | Thursday, December 11, 2014
This post was written for Open Spaces, the official blog of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. It’s part of a monthly series featuring SCA interns writing about their experiences working to promote, protect and study wildlife on public lands all over the United States.
Today’s featured blogger, Stacey Kinney,...

SCA ConSERVE NYC Volunteers Brave Wintry Weather to Restore NYC Beaches

Posted by Ann Pedtke | Monday, December 8, 2014

SCA ConSERVE NYC volunteers aren’t scared of a little rain! This weekend, 50 dedicated volunteers gathered at Jacob Riis Park in Queens, braving intermittent showers and near-freezing temperatures to help restore one of New York City’s most beloved beaches.

A Message from SCA President and CEO Jaime Matyas

Posted by Staff | Friday, November 21, 2014
Student Conservation Association's Community Crews like this one in Camden NJ, bring environmental stewardship to underserved communities

As we prepare to give thanks with friends and family, I want to express my gratitude for your ongoing support of SCA volunteers. Your generosity allows SCA volunteers to impact every corner of our country…two in particular come to mind today.

Camden, New Jersey is no national park. It’s been cited...

"There are positive things happening here"

Posted by Staff | Friday, November 21, 2014
Student Conservation Association's Community Crews like this one in Camden NJ, bring environmental stewardship to underserved communities

Be honest: when you think of Camden, New Jersey, a certain image comes to mind – and it probably doesn’t include local teens cultivating a community garden.

But had you visited the Beckett Street Urban Farm last summer, you would have seen teams of SCA members raising peppers, cucumbers, kale and...

Volunteers Continue Sandy Recovery on Manhattan's Lower East Side

Posted by Ann Pedtke | Monday, November 17, 2014

On November 15th, over 40 employee volunteers from SCA’s partner MUFG Union Bank gathered on Manhattan’s Lower East Side to restore East River Park as part of MUFG’s National Employee Volunteer Month.

East River Park — a 57-acre oasis of green between the FDR highway and the East River, and

...

If these 3 photos don't inspire you to protect nature, you'd better check your pulse

Posted by Joseph Thurston | Sunday, November 16, 2014

You made it tough with so many inspiring entries (over 3000 total!), but somehow we managed to choose 1st, 2nd, & 3rd place winners for the 2014 Got Dirt? Photo Contest.

If these three images don’t inspire you to get up and do something to protect nature, please, for your own...

by Rachel Snodgrass, SCA Intern at Cape Lookout National Seashore

Posted by Staff | Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Open Spaces, the official blog of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, is now featuring monthly posts by Student Conservation Association interns working to promote, protect, and study wildlife on public lands all over the United States. This is the first post in the series, written by Rachel Snodgrass,...

AmeriCorps Director Bill Basl Joins SCA to Restore Fort Mahan Park

Posted by Ann Pedtke | Tuesday, November 11, 2014

National AmeriCorps Director Bill Basl joined 65 SCA volunteers on 11/11 at Fort Mahan Park to honor Veterans Day through service.

You need to shop for the holidays. SCA needs your help building the next generation of Conservation Leaders...

Posted by Joseph Thurston | Monday, November 10, 2014

Considering where we are on the calendar, it seems likely that you’ll be doing a little shopping sometime in the very near future. Considering that it’s 2014, odds are some of it’ll take place… on the internet.

Here are a couple ways to support SCA (and therefore the future of...

SCA ConSERVE NYC Volunteers Restore Manhattan's Freshwater Wetlands

Posted by Ann Pedtke | Monday, November 10, 2014

SCA honored Veterans Day through service in NYC by bringing 116 volunteers to Randall’s Island for our second-largest ConSERVE NYC event of the year.

Members of SCA's Veterans Fire Corps Lead the Effort to Restore Fragile Desert Habitat

Posted by Joseph Thurston | Monday, November 10, 2014

Over 90 SCA volunteers gathered at Rio Salado Habitat in Phoenix on November 8th to honor Veterans Day with hands-on service to America’s public lands.

SCA ConSERVE NYC Volunteers Increase Accessibility to the Waterfront

Posted by Ann Pedtke | Tuesday, October 28, 2014

SCA kicked off the second year of ConSERVE NYC by bringing 92 volunteers to Jamaica Bay to continue work on a new wheelchair-accessible trail from the Visitor Center to the waterfront.

Trails and Hiking

Celebrating SCA Members' Work on Public Lands

Posted by Staff | Tuesday, October 21, 2014

The United States Department of the Interior (DOI) has over 360,000 followers on Instagram, and all this week that gargantuan community of public lands enthusiasts will be seeing (and “liking”) photos taken by SCA members!

DOI (@usinterior) has made it a priority to connect young Americans of all...

Barbara Baird and Chuck Haggard

Posted by Staff | Tuesday, October 21, 2014

When asked what first inspired her interest in nature, award-winning wildlife photographer, Barbara Baird, said it was the flash of blue from an eastern bluebird.  As a young girl, Barbara’s parents often took her family to visit parks just outside of Chicago, and it was on one of these trips...

Employees & families clear storm damage at Millwood State Park

Posted by Ann Pedtke | Wednesday, October 15, 2014

On October 4th, SCA teamed up with national supporter Domtar to renovate campgrounds and clear storm debris at Millwood State Park in Ashdown, Arkansas.

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Meet some of the amazing women who blazed a trail with SCA

Our 2015 Summer Roadtrip takes you to amazing places and member stories around the country.

75000 Members have served with SCA

Throughout the Summer of 2014 we marked our 75,000th member with 75 stories of the women and men have served with SCA - read them here.

Read about the women and men who helped build America’s oldest and largest youth conservation service organization here

Member Bloggers

Rachelle Hedges
San Mateo County Parks
See Posts by Rachelle Hedges
Sarika Khanwilkar
Hobe Sound National Wildlife Refuge
See Posts by Sarika Khanwilkar
Elizabeth Braatz
St. Croix Wetland Management District
See Posts by Elizabeth Braatz
Noah M Schlager
National Trails Intermountain Region
See Posts by Noah M Schlager
Dakota McCoy
Yosemite National Park
See Posts by Dakota McCoy
Ariel Lepito
Necedah National Wildlife Refuge
See Posts by Ariel Lepito
Jessica Zamudio
Yosemite National Park
See Posts by Jessica Zamudio

Staff Bloggers

Ann Pedtke
New York City
See posts by Ann Pedtke
Joseph Thurston
Washington, DC
See posts by Joseph Thurston

Alumni Stories

Where will SCA take you?

Todd Nelson is the volunteer coordinator at Grand Canyon National Park. We asked him about his career, the National Park...
SCA alum Lauren Ray, aka the Rapping Ranger, has written and performed hip hop odes to each park that she's worked at, starting with Arches National Park where she served as an SCA Intern.
SCA alum Lauren Ray reveals how her SCA internship with the National Park Service helped her discover her public-lands-loving hip hop alter ego, the Rapping Ranger.

New findings on SCA's youth impact - read about the Search Institute's study

A new multi-year study on SCA’s youth impact shows significant gains across a wide range of indicators.
Read about the Study here »

Michelle Bobowick, Interning with SCA in Yellowstone National Park, 1985
It was 1958, when our family affair with the Student Conservation Association began. Since, then our family has continued its commitment to improving the world around us through SCA.
During the summer of ’69, twenty students arrived at Great Smokey Mountains National Park ready to clear windfall damage in...
When Student Conservation Association (SCA) supporter and 1983 alumnus, Bob Kachinski, was fresh out of college, he went on what...

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