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Local Youth Find Summer Jobs in Bay Area Parks

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Date: June 26, 2009
Contact: Jessica Luo, 415-464-5132

The Student Conservation Association is pleased to announce that 70 young adults from the Bay Area have been provided summer jobs on six trail, habitat restoration, and conservation crews this summer. Three crews are being provided to San Mateo County Department of Parks and Recreation and will maintain trails in Huddart Park, San Pedro Valley Park, and San Bruno Mountain Park. A fourth crew will undertake habitat restoration and native plant projects in the Presidio of San Francisco. The fifth crew will maintain trails at the Phleger Estate -- part of the Golden Gate National Recreation Area north of Woodside. The sixth crew will work at the Verde Partnership Garden at Verde Elementary School in North Richmond. At Point Reyes National Seashore, there is a Marine Science Crew which consists of seven students from high schools in Oakland and San Francisco. The crew will be lodged at the Historic Lifeboat Station at Point Reyes National Seashore.

This program is a 16-day, intensive field seminar where students learn about and participate in marine science, wetlands ecology, intertidal monitoring, cutting-edge research, and habitat restoration. Students are here from June 21 to July 6.

In particular, they will be the pilot group for a new Giacomini Wetlands education program, where students learn about and have the opportunity to participate in long-term monitoring of the newly restored Giacomini Wetlands. Students learn about the shifts in plant communities, water quality, and bird populations in Giacomini wetlands since the restoration. They also learn how to diagram cross-sections of streams, measure water flow, and conduct fish monitoring. Lastly, students also assist with ongoing habitat restoration work at Giacomini Wetlands by removing invasive plants that have started to colonize in the wetlands.

This multiethnic and diverse group of students was selected because of their interest in marine science and conservation. This program was specially designed for high school students from the urban Bay Area who come from low to middle-income backgrounds, and gives them an opportunity to for immersion in a National Park as an outdoor science classroom.

This program is organized through the Pacific Coast Science and Learning Center, one of 21 Research Learning Centers around the country working to facilitate the use of parks for scientific inquiry as well as science-based learning at the high school and college level. Jessica Luo, ocean education coordinator for the Pacific Coast Science and Learning Center and Point Reyes National Seashore Association, is leading this program.

"This is a marvelous opportunity for young and curious minds to explore and appreciate this natural bounty, not only for its natural history and recreational use, but also for serious scientific study and inquiry. At the Pacific Coast Science and Learning Center, we like to provide those serious science opportunities for students," stated Ms. Luo.

In addition to doing valuable and exciting outdoor conservation work, crew members will receive job readiness training in work ethics, money management, diversity/respect, appropriate gear/clothing, conflict management, leadership, and teamwork.

"SCA places great value in being able to provide summer conservation-based ‘green jobs’ to young adults to work on projects that benefit the land and communities around the greater Bay Area," said Bettina Mok, Regional Community Program Manager for the Student Conservation Association.

The youth conservation crews have been organized by the Student Conservation Association and are funded by San Mateo County Parks, the National Park Service, and local foundation grants to the Student Conservation Association.

Site visits, photo opportunities, and crew member interviews are welcome and easily arranged.

SCA is a nationwide conservation force of college and high school volunteers who protect and restore America’s parks, forests, refuges, seashores and communities. For more than 50 years, SCA’s active, hands-on practice of conservation has helped to develop a new generation of conservation leaders, inspire lifelong stewardship, and save the planet. SCA is a non-profit headquartered in Charlestown, New Hampshire with regional offices in Washington D.C., Oakland, Pittsburgh and Seattle. www.thesca.org.

- NPS -

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