National Park Hires Youth for Summer Projects
The National Park of American Samoa has hired 16 local high school students to participate in its Youth Conservation Corps (YCC) program for the next two months. This program provides youth between the ages of 15 and 18 with opportunities to work and learn together on Tutuila and in the Manu’a Islands. It is an important program to engage local youth in the work of the National Park Service.
“The Youth Conservation Corps has a long and successful history in the mainland and Hawaii and we are excited to bring this program to American Samoa” said Superintendent Jim Bacon. “Through the YCC we will be able to actively engage Samoan youth in national park efforts, providing employment and learning opportunities, and ultimately preparing the next generation of Samoan national park stewards.”
The participants will complete a variety of projects with park staff such as trail construction and maintenance, general maintenance work, invasive species control, collecting water quality samples, and working with visitors and villages.
This summer’s participants are Live Tau and Fernandez Lago (Samoana); Young Mamea and Charlize Tapusoa (Nu’uuli Voc-Tech); Aioise Talamoni (Leone); Penitisa Leatutufu and Filipo Paselio (Fa’asao Marist); Quendolynn Eseroma (Kanana Fou); and Olyvoyah Sefo, Jessen Sasiu, Darius Mutini, Aj Maiava, Lotufaamanatu Hicks, and Malaefono Ioane (Manu’a).
The Youth Conservation Corps program allows youth to work in their national park while giving them an understanding of its natural and cultural resources. It also introduces them to careers related to the protection of these resources. The program is challenging, educational, and fun, and offers participants opportunities to expand their horizons while building skills that will benefit them for a lifetime.