Sponsored Programs, Agreements, Research, and Contracts Office



Project: DWS

Principal Investigator: Briget Eastep

Funding Type: State

Funding Source: Utah Department of Workforce Services

Funding Amount: $50,000

College: School of Integrative & Engaged Learning

Department: Outdoor Engagement Center

Ryan Young, SUU’s youth coordinator for the Intergovernmental Internship Cooperative, is connecting select high school students with an invaluable experience- an opportunity for a paid internship with the National Park Service.

Students who qualify for the internship are those who are disadvantaged. This includes individuals who are disabled, housed in foster care, or those who are living at or below the poverty line. Those who do not meet these requirements can still participate by joining Young’s student crew that is put together each year.

Crews work together throughout the summer by building fences, weeding and maintaining the campgrounds, and trail maintenance. Students will learn about the park’s ecology, Geographic Information Systems (GIS), improve their group work skills, and participate in the politics affecting the decisions of the entity overseeing the work area. In 2013, Young oversaw seven of these crews in Zion National Park, Dixie National Forest, Cedar Breaks, and other national and state parks.

Many of the youth who participate are Native American. Young explains that many of these students have never been visitors to Kolob or Cedar Breaks. "Being on these crews gives them opportunities to get outside of their comfort zone and experience nature," he says, "and they start to love it".

The student internships are made possible through $50,000 in funding from the Utah Department of Workforce Services brought in by Brigit Eastep, SUU’s Associate Professor of Outdoor Recreation.

DWS Program
DWS Program
DWS Program
DWS Program
DWS Program
DWS Program