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Contact: Lyn Carranza, (928) 524-6228 ext. 245
Petrified Forest, AZ – This past summerPetrified Forest National Park hired twelve youth from areas near the park in a Youth Conservation Corps (YCC) program. “Students were recruited from local high schools to assist with a number of critical park projects,” said Superintendent Lee Baiza.
Some of the deferred maintenance projects completed with the assistance of this crew included landscaping around the Painted Desert Visitor Center, painting, exotic plant eradication, and road shoulder maintenance. In addition, many other small projects were completed that may not have otherwise been accomplished without the assistance of this crew.
As a part of this program, the students are provided educational opportunities during the time that they are employed. This summer, students took a hike into the Painted Desert Wilderness and learned about the park’s paleontology. They went to two other National Park Service sites, Wupatki and Sunset Crater where they learned about how other parks are organized and how they operate. They were given special “behind the scenes” tours at each site. The group also learned about one of the National Park Service’s sister agencies, the U. S. Forest Service on a trip to Mt. Humphreys.
YCC is a summer employment program established by the Federal government to provide an opportunity for young men and women to work, earn, and learn together in projects in public land areas of the United States of America.
The three objectives of the YCC program are:
1) Accomplish needed conservation work on public lands;
2) Provide gainful employment for young people of all social, economic, ethnic, and racial backgrounds; and
3) Develop in participating youth an understanding and appreciation of the nation’s natural environment and heritage.
Youth are provided an opportunity to increase self-esteem and learn self-discipline. They learn work ethics, relate with peers and supervisors, and build lasting cultural bridges. Length of employment was 8 weeks beginning on June 12, 2006, and continuing through August 5, 2006.
Students hired for the 2006 YCC program and park employees assisting with field trips included from left to right in the top photo: Ken Bauer (NPS Maintenance), Amber George, Christine Cooksey, Marcus Ashley, Sherilyn Baloo, Shaina Baldwin, Sharon Baldwin (NPS Fee Collection), Michelle Billiman, Zach Warner, Jeremiah Lano, Curtis McConnell, Marcelino Luna, Bryan Treadwell, Samantha Cox, Marge Post (NPS Interpretation).
Color, digital images are available upon request at the address or phone number below.
For information call (928) 524-6228 weekdays, 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Mountain Standard Time; or write to the Superintendent, Petrified Forest National Park, P.O. Box 2217, Petrified Forest, AZ 86028; or e-mail the park Superintendent