WORK, LEARN, PLAY, AND GROW
We need you! Get paid to accomplish needed conservation work on public lands. Work on historic structures, restore native species, disappearing trails, and the eradication of invasive species.
The application period is open now and varies by location, though many have an April 15, 2022 deadline. Check out the list of participating parks here. View the application to apply.
What is the Youth Conservation Corps?
The United States Youth Conservation Corps (YCC) is a summer youth employment program that engages young people in meaningful work experiences at national parks, forests, wildlife refuges, and fish hatcheries while developing an ethic of environmental stewardship and civic responsibility. YCC programs are generally 8 to 10 weeks and members are paid the minimum wage for a 40-hour work week. YCC opportunities provide paid daytime work activities with members who commute to the Federal unit daily.
Please note, Yellowstone National Park is the only residential program and applications are currently closed for this park site. All other YCC programs are non-residential programs, which means that no housing is available at the site, and participants must independently provide their own transportation to the site each day. If you have questions about eligibilty, please visit the park's webpage to contact them directly before completing the application.
Who is eligible?
Youth, 15 through 18 years of age, who are permanent residents of the United States, are eligible for employment without regard to social, economic, racial, or ethnic backgrounds. Youth with physical or other challenges who can effectively participate in most YCC activities are eligible. Youth must have no history of serious criminal or other antisocial behavior that might endanger their safety or that of others; have or be able to obtain a work permit as required under the laws of their State; have a Social Security number or have made application of one. Please note, the Youth Conservation Corps is a local program, so participants need to be able to commute to and from the site daily. Transportation to the site will generally not be available.
What would I do?
Youth Conservation Corps members work in a healthful outdoor setting on a variety of projects including building trails, maintaining fences, cleaning up campgrounds, improving wildlife habitat, environmental education planning and teaching, stream restoration, historic building preservation, and more! You'll also participate in educational field trips where chances are you'll see wildlife or history before your eyes, hike and stand on a mountaintop, or gaze at an ancient ruin.
How do I find an opportunity?
Looking for a Youth Conservation Corps program in a national park near you? Check out our list of opportunities for 2022 list, or find a federal site near you and inquire if they have a YCC program or other opportunities. Other locations include:
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service:
What benefits would I get from participating?
Not only would you get paid to work in some of the coolest places in the country, but you will also have the chance to learn about careers with the National Park Service and gain valuable work skills that can help you get your next job! You will be working with other incredible people and hopefully you will build a lifetime bond. If you like to hike, backpack, climb, kayak, bike, horseback ride, etc national parks are perfect for that!
How do I apply?
Please send your completed form directly to the park of interest. Visit the park's webpage to find their contact information. Note that most sites have an April 15th due date, so plan ahead and reach out to the park with any questions. APPLY HERE.
YCC NEEDS YOUTH LIKE YOU
Each summer, the Kodiak National Wildlife Refuge employs a group of teens to work alongside refuge biologists, educators, maintenance staff and partners. In this video, Youth Conservation Corps (YCC) crew leader (and former YCC crew member) Anelise Zimmer highlights the service learning projects and efforts of the 2013 Kodiak YCC.
- 6 minutes, 9 seconds
Last updated: March 7, 2022