American Conservation Experience

by on October 7, 2012

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I was lucky enough to spend a week in Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks this summer. Our national park system is truly one of our country’s treasures–it’s one thing that the federal government actually seems to do really well. However, our national parks also benefit significantly from the help of volunteers. One organization that has done a lot of great work is American Conservation Experience. They’re based in Flagstaff, AZ, and they offer “opportunities for both American and International volunteers to take part in challenging outdoor projects in many of the most beautiful National Parks, National Forests and wilderness areas in the Western United States.”

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A lot of volunteer programs are light work and heavy on tourism. Even though ACE sends people to beautiful places across Arizona, California, Nevada, New Mexico, and Utah, they’re actually put to work on things like trail maintenance, rock work, and ecological restoration. The trips are typically 12 weeks or longer, and they are low cost with room and board provided. You can read up on the organization’s past and future work on their site, and you can also look into volunteering. If you’re looking for something more career oriented, you can check out their internships on Idealist. Right now they’re looking for a paid Fisheries and Wildlife Intern and a paid Recreation Management & Ranger Intern (San Joaquin River George, CA). Both positions look really interesting.

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