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.

Serve Somewhere Unexpected

Posted by Joseph Thurston | Thursday, March 19, 2015

ABOVE: St. Regis Canoe Area

Sure. You could spend a few months serving the planet with SCA at a world famous national park, working around tourists, instagramming thoroughly oggled geysers in your spare time. Your friends back home will check their phones and be all like, “Oh. Look at that....

Adventures, Animals & Wildlife, Backcountry & Wilderness, Career Success, Climate, Coasts & Water, Diversity, Education, Endangered Species, Forests, History, Invasives, Kids, Parks, Science, Sustainability, Volunteer Opportunities, Wetlands

The closest you'll get to being there without being there...

Posted by Joseph Thurston | Wednesday, March 18, 2015

If you love parks as much as we do, you’ll L-O-V-E this video from More Than Just Parks. 

The “rock” at :44? Priceless!

MTJP | Joshua Tree from More Than Just Parks on Vimeo.

Help us protect such public lands treasures forever and ever. Donate today. ...

Backcountry & Wilderness, Coasts & Water

Photos that warmed us up to a cold, cold winter

Posted by Joseph Thurston | Wednesday, March 18, 2015
ABOVE: Another entry by grand prize winner Bernice Ngo, this one titled Ready to Climb.

Wow, what a winter it’s been! For the I <3 Snow Photo Contest, we called for images that would inspire people to embrace the great outdoors in spite of the cold. It’s a good...

Adventures, Backcountry & Wilderness, Parks

More Emerald Internships at SCA

Posted by Joseph Thurston | Tuesday, March 17, 2015

At SCA, we see green all year, but we definitely see a lot more of it around St. Patrick’s Day. Here are some more extra-emerald internships, highlighted alongside a few green-themed fun facts. Apply today…

  • Ireland is The Emerald Isle and Seattle is Emerald City, renowned for
  • ...

Building a Public Lands Workforce that's as Diverse as the America that it Serves

Posted by Joseph Thurston | Monday, March 16, 2015

ABOVE: Ranger Glenn leads SCA NPS Academy members on an ecology hiking featuring the flora and geology of the Great Smokies.

Each spring for the last 5 years, young conservationists of diverse background have come together from colleges and universities all over the country, converging at select national parks to begin...

Adventures, Animals & Wildlife, Backcountry & Wilderness, Career Success, Diversity, Education, Kids, Parks, People, Volunteer Opportunities

Emerald Internships at SCA

Posted by Staff | Friday, March 13, 2015

Lots of people are going green this week to commemorate St. Patrick’s Day but at SCA, green is a 24-7-365 way of life. Here’s some St. Paddy’s Day trivia and related intern opportunities. Apply now and, with the luck of the Irish, you could soon land the jig – I mean gig – of a lifetime!

SCA alumni, donor and environmental educator, Jessica Aronson Cook

Posted by Staff | Friday, March 13, 2015

“Something different” is what Jessica Aronson Cook was looking for when she first joined the Student Conservation Association (SCA) as a Canyonlands National Park intern. Little did she know she would find her future career and life-long friends.

After finishing a very challenging teaching job for emotionally troubled teenagers and before...

Adventures, Backcountry & Wilderness, Career Success, Education, Kids, Parks, People, Science

High score from prestigious Interactive Media Awards

Posted by Staff | Friday, March 13, 2015

The Student Conservation Association’s website, www.thesca.org has won a ‘Best in Class’ prize for Nonprofits from the Interactive Media Awards (IMA), with a total score of 491 out of 500. The IMA Competition, held since 2006, recognizes the highest standards of excellence in website development and...

Career Success, Education

SCA works better because #AmeriCorpsWorks.

Posted by Joseph Thurston | Thursday, March 12, 2015

SCA has been a proud partner of AmeriCorps since the program was created back in 1994. The 19,000 AmeriCorps members that have served with SCA since that time have dedicated over 10.4 million hours to protecting, studying, and promoting the spaces where nature thrives all over the country, from...

Education, History, Parks, Sustainability, Volunteer Opportunities

Extending NPS Career Opportunities to Diverse Young Conservationists

Posted by Joseph Thurston | Wednesday, March 11, 2015

This week marks the beginning of SCA NPS Academy 2015, as 20 young conservationists hailing from myriad backgrounds gather in Grand Teton National Park for a 7-day look at what it’s like to work for the National Park Service as protectors and promoters of America’s pricelessly wild publics lands....

Adventures, Animals & Wildlife, Backcountry & Wilderness, Career Success, Diversity, Education, Parks, Volunteer Opportunities

SCA Members study Silver Rice Rat, Pineland Croton, Butterflies and Osprey

Posted by Staff | Tuesday, March 10, 2015
Florida Leafwing Butterfly - one of many species being studied by SCA members in the field

Most of us consider the Florida Keys to be a paradise. But they are also a laboratory.

Over the past century, ocean waters here have risen nine inches and scientists predict they could climb another two feet by 2060.  As most of the Keys’ land mass is a mere five feet...

SCA Ed Intern Grace Worm on Traveling the Nation for Education

Posted by Staff | Tuesday, March 10, 2015
SCA member Grace Worm with co-Travelers

Last summer, Grace Worm, currently an SCA Education Intern and AmeriCorps member, traveled the US in a green RV for Roadtrip Nation and spoke with a educators about what it means to be a teacher. That is what led her to SCA.

The Key Largo Woodrat is almost extinct. SCA member Chris Burgess is trying to change that.

Posted by Joseph Thurston | Monday, March 9, 2015
SCA Intern Chris Burgess is helping pull back the Key Largo woodrat from the brink of extinction

Humans have been blamed for the demise of myriad creatures…so imagine helping to pull one back from the brink of extinction.

The Key Largo woodrat has a gray-brown back, a white belly, and measures 14 inches from nose to tail. “They’re kind of cute,” states SCA intern...

Animals & Wildlife, Endangered Species

Posted by Staff | Tuesday, March 3, 2015
Marty Talbot, Scott Warthin, Liz Putnam discuss their work with SCA

Marty Talbot’s conservation credentials are seemingly endless: she’s an award-winning biologist, an accomplished author, and her pioneering research has spanned more than 50 years and 60 countries. Marty is also co-founder of SCA.

Career Success, History

Happy Birthday to the Grandest of All Canyon-Centric Parks!

Posted by Joseph Thurston | Thursday, February 26, 2015

Theodore Roosevelt was a grand man known for grand gestures, thus it should be no surprise that he loved—LOVED—the Grand Canyon. When he visited it in 1903, making him the first president to do so, his reaction was, well… grand. “The Grand Canyon fills me with awe....

Adventures, Animals & Wildlife, Backcountry & Wilderness, History, Parks

Posted by Leigh Whaley | Thursday, February 26, 2015

February 1, 2015

I am sitting on a tree swing suspended by purple rope next to the frozen Hallockville  pond. The wind is rushing through the tree branches high above me and blowing up whorls of snow flurries that have come to rest atop the pond. The sun is out and the...

Posted by Leigh Whaley | Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Danger Six Special Operations

Operation Save Boston

Mission Report


17 February 2015

0800 Electronic mail received from Melissa Patterson containing call to service.

0801 Daniel Dobrosielski, Emily Palmer, Nathan Salle, and Sophie Stern respond via electronic mail to service call.

Mission Leaders James Sims and Zach Colatch.

1600 Melissa Patterson sends electronic mail with mission details....

Posted by Leigh Whaley | Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Driving into the city of Boston for the first time on Wednesday reminded me of all of wonderful the commuter traffic, which I left in DC to go live in Western Massachusetts to serve with SCA Massachusetts AmeriCorps. It felt a little bit like home for the...

6 members of SCA's Massachusetts AmeriCorps Program help Bostonians get out from under 7 ft of snow

Posted by Joseph Thurston | Tuesday, February 24, 2015

The Danger Six, a “Special Operations Unit” composed of SCA Massachusetts Americorps members and staff, traveled to the city of Boston to aid in snow removal efforts. For three days and two nights, the unit cleared snow and received positive encouragement from many Bostonians. Although their service in Boston is...

Climate, Volunteer Opportunities

Where tech & nature intersect, SCA Member Rachelle Hedges sees the future of conservation

Posted by Rachelle Hedges | Monday, February 23, 2015

I had just witnessed first-hand that using technology and spending time outdoors is not an either/or proposition. One does not inherently exclude or lessen the value of the other, and just because we have a generation that loves their phones, doesn’t mean we won’t have a generation of conservationists too. I believe the marrying of technology and nature will help to better both, making each more valuable, more accessible and healthier. And I believe that students like the ones I worked with today will be the driving force behind this marriage for many years to come.



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

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

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?

Red Ant Pants founder and SCA Alum Sarah Calhoun
SCA alumna Sarah Calhoun (SCA 2002, ’03, ‘04) – the founder of Red Ants Pants , a specialty line of...
SCA Board member Ernest C. Wong (inset) and Ping Tom Memorial Park in Chicago
Look around a national park and you may see brown bears, blue herons, or Redwood trees. But you’re less likely...

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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