Where did you grow up?
My childhood was on a beautiful lake, Gull Lake, in a rural community outside of Kalamazoo, Michigan. Continue Reading…
Mt. Adams Institute hosted the 3rd annual Pacific Northwest Wilderness Stewardship Skills Training weekend last month. This event invited 50 participants from across the area who are passionate about helping steward the Pacific Northwest’s incredible system of Wilderness areas. Continue Reading…
Natural resource management and public lands agencies/organizations are encouraged to submit an application by June 21, 2017 to receive a VetsWork intern at their site beginning February/March, 2018.
What is the VetsWork AmeriCorps Program?
VetsWork: Environment is a career development program for military Veterans interested in a career in natural resources management. VetsWork participants engage in an 11 month-long internship at a federal, state or local natural resource organization that blends hands-on experience with specific career development training. As a result, VetsWork participants increase their employment opportunities while improving public lands and other natural resources. To learn more, view the VetsWork video. Continue Reading…
Mt. Adams Institute continues to grow with the recent hiring of Marijke Riddering Weaver as the Program Coordinator for the VetsWork GreenCorps and Public Lands Stewards Programs.
Marijke brings a wealth of experience to the organization. She has a degree in Natural Resource Management as well as Outdoor Education and Leadership. She spent over 10 years working in the field as a teacher, outdoor instructor, Student Affairs Manager, and wilderness guide across the United states and abroad. Marijke also spent years working as a social worker in Portland supporting runaway and homeless youth.
Marijke will incorporate her love of the natural world and experience supporting people taking on new life challenges into her new position with Mt. Adams Institute. Please help us welcome Marijke to the team!
I am originally from Indiana and have spent the past 5 years living in Georgia. Growing up I played almost every sport that was offered. I graduated from Indiana University with a degree in Political Science and am currently working towards my Master’s Degree in Public Policy. I joined the Navy to be a linguist and spent 5 years working at the National Security Agency in Georgia. I enjoy exploring the outdoors especially through running, mainly mountain and ultra-running. I basically love spending long days in the mountains exploring new places.
I decided to join the VetsWork AmeriCorps program to get my foot in the door in a field that deals with environmental and natural resources issues. It will afford me the opportunity to gain experience in a field that seemed to be difficult to otherwise break into. I will be serving as a Writer Analyst Intern for the Wallowa-Whitman National Forest. I look forward to getting to understand how the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) and the Forest Service interact in land management issues. And also to see how competing interests are balanced against each other.
Mt. Adams Institute staff will be doing the snow dance all weekend long — January 31-February 2. Come check out our small town’s response to being cooped up all winter with no snow to enjoy.
For more details, take a look at the Cabin Fever poster 2014
What Vets Miss Most Is What Most Civilians Fear
Business Insider (NY), November 26, 2013
What rescued her was a stint with AmeriCorps, the federal community service organization, which gave her a job that led to full-time employment with a national nonprofit. AmeriCorps offered my friend three crucial things: a new mission, a new purpose, and a strong, supportive social network in which people were actually invested in one another’s well-being and success.
This article from the Business Insider suggests that a significant element missing from the civilian world for transitioning military veterans is the sense of social connection in all aspects of everyday life. Where once there was a defining team ethic; where every action of an individual impacted the welfare of the entire team, now individualism and independence are the norm. What we think of as teamwork or collaboration on specific projects seems anti-social next to the intense interconnectedness of a military squad.
This insightful perspective gives a focus for constructing an effective transition from the military culture to the civilian workforce culture. Individual service men and women may seek opportunities for replacing the strong social network or may be unaware of this potential missing link, but as a program designed to support this transition VetsWork intentionally incorporates this attribute within its very structure. We are an AmeriCorps program with all of the values of team and cohesion inherent in the national service model. We train as a group from the outset and throughout the year. We structure Pod meetings to maintain the group dynamic. We encourage regular connection through social media and technological strategies. We know how valuable a sense of connectedness is. If this article accurately represents the experience of our military veterans, then we know it is even more crucial for VetsWork. Read this article and let us know what you think. Look at our VetsWork information in this flyer and this brochure and see for yourself how VetsWork can support this career transition.
Visit our website at www.mtadamsinstitute.com for more information. See our job listings at www.mtadamsinstitute.com/jobs.
Asking for help is never easy, especially when you’re in the business of helping other people and places. Yet, here we are asking for your support to HELP the Mt. Adams Institute (MAI). We’ve got a goal to raise $25,000 by the end of the year to support MAI programs that strengthen the connection between people and the natural world.
Why support MAI? Because we’re making a positive difference in our communities, in the lives of participants and on the environment. Here’s how we’re doing it:
VetsWork is a career development program for military veterans interested in securing employment in the natural resources/public lands management sector. Participants spend 10.5 months in a VetsWork AmeriCorps Internship with agencies like the Forest Service, Fish & Wildlife Service and National Park Service where they learn new skills, develop professional connections and explore career possibilities. VetsWork is part of the solution that addresses some of the challenges that our military veterans face as they transition back into the civilian world, including the highest unemployment rate of any measured demographic for young men ages 21-25.
Wilderness Stewards support the conservation and preservation of wilderness throughout the Pacific Northwest. Participants spend 17 weeks over the summer educating wilderness visitors, maintaining wilderness trails and monitoring the quality of wilderness. As 2014 is the 50 year anniversary of the Wilderness Act, the work of our Wilderness AmeriCorps Stewards will be even more prominent.
Education Programs inspire and inform people about the natural world. This past year, we worked with local schools to get kids outdoors exploring via boots and boats. We also partnered with Cascade Mountain School to deliver top notch STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) programs for middle school and high school students.
Ready to help these great programs? Donating is easy! Check out our Support Page. You can give online, in person or via mail. We’ll make sure we utilize your support efficiently and effectively.
The first of two volunteer projects to prepare the Willard Tool House to move to Peterson Prairie begins this Friday, July 19. The project runs through the weekend. The second project occurs July 26-28. For more information, contact MAI. Read the Forest Service’s press release below for more details:
Join us this summer on the beautiful Gifford Pinchot National Forest as we “reconstruct the past!” as part of a Passport in Time (PIT) Project.
On September 11, 2012, the historic Peterson Prairie Cabin, constructed in 1926, burned to the ground. The loss of this beautiful and historically significant building was devastating, and has motivated both the Forest Service and the interested, local public to pursue a replacement structure. After a little searching, it was decided that the nearby historic Willard Tool House will be transported to and installed on the Cabin’s former location. The Tool House was originally constructed in 1940 by the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) as part of a seven-structure complex that formed the Willard Work Center, a former Forest Service ranger station facility. The building is a great example of “Rustic Style” architecture, and will fit the look and feel once exhibited by Peterson Prairie Cabin.
Our project will occur over two phases, the first of which will take place this year. During Phase I, PIT volunteers and Forest staff will prepare the building for transport to the Peterson Cabin site. Preparation will include painting, removal of various fixtures and hardware, installing new flooring, and securing portions of the structure for the move. There can be no true replacement for what the Forest lost in the Peterson Cabin, but with your help, this important piece of history can find a new home and help heal the wound! There is much to see and do here during the hours “off the clock,” and volunteers will also have the opportunity for an informative tour during the presentation of the Wind River Training Center, an NRHP (National Register of Historic Places) structure also constructed by the CCC.
Mt. Adams Institute is pleased to announce that it has been awarded $308,725 from the Corporation of National and Community Service (AmeriCorps) to implement VetsWork!
VetsWork is career development program for military veterans interested in natural resources management/public lands careers. Beginning in January, 2014, 25 VetsWork participants will be placed into internship positions with community, state and federal organizations.
To learn more about the program, read the VetsWork Brochure
In conjunction with this announcement, Mt. Adams Institute is releasing a Request for Proposals (RFP) to agencies interested in working with a VetsWork participant.
Resolution Honors CCC on 80th Anniversary and Modern Day Youth Corps
For Immediate Release
June 7, 2013
WASHINGTON, D.C. — Today Representative Raúl Grijalva (D-AZ) introduced a resolution in the U.S. House of Representatives honoring the popular Great Depression-era jobs initiative known as the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) and its alumni on the 80th anniversary of its creation. Representative Grijalva’s resolution also encourages Americans to recognize the contributions and history of the CCC and its participants and supports continuation of the legacy of the CCC and the ideals of national service and community improvement through Youth Corps. Representatives Betty McCollum (D-MN), Keith Ellison (D-MN), Rick Nolan (D-MN), and Ann McLane Kuster (D-NH) are original cosponsors.
At the peak of the Great Depression, 25 percent of Americans were unemployed. From 1933-1942 over 3 million young men were enrolled in the CCC and received vital job experience and wages for themselves and their families. In addition to improving their own lives, the “CCC Boys” left an incredible legacy. Among their accomplishments they constructed and improved over 800 state and national parks, built nearly 47,000 bridges, and planted nearly 3 billion trees nationwide.
While the program ended soon after many CCC Boys members entered the Armed Forces to serve their country in World War II, a tradition started that is continued by today’s Youth Service and Conservation Corps. Today 127 Corps member organizations now constitute the national “Corps Network” and enroll 27,000 Corpsmembers nationwide, with Corps operating in every state and the District of Columbia.
“We owe a great debt to the Civilian Conservation Corps, and every American should remember how important it’s been to his or her community,” Representative Grijalva said. “The CCC built some of America’s greatest parks, helped clean up our environment, improved public access to the great outdoors on a monumental scale, and engaged millions of youth in conservation, education, and workforce training projects. Americans still benefit each year from the what the Corps did for this country, and today’s Corps Network continues that important legacy.”
Like the Civilian Conservation Corps, The Mt. Adams Institute (MAI) was founded as a non-profit agency in 2011 to benefit youth throughout the Columbia River Gorge and the Pacific Northwest region. It provides young women and men with structured, safe and challenging service and educational opportunities through projects that promote personal growth, the development of social skills, and an ethic of natural resource stewardship. MAI offers programs year-round throughout Washington and Oregon.
“This resolution helps bring attention to the value of the Corps concept past and present,” said Brendan Norman, Executive Director of Mt. Adams Institute. “At a time when people need jobs, Corps play a valuable role in American life by strengthening America through service and conservation. That was the case during the Great Depression, and it’s the case today with Mt. Adams Institute in the Pacific Northwest.”
Mary Ellen Ardouny, President and CEO of The Corps Network, the national association of Youth Service and Conservation Corps, remarked,“We applaud Representative Grijalva for his leadership in honoring the CCC and supporting the Corps of today by introducing this resolution and also by having introduced the Public Lands Service Corps Act earlier this year. Getting more youth outside and developing work skills that benefits them and their country is a win-win. Given our nation’s needs for insfrastructure, workforce and leadership activities for youth, Corps provide a valuable resource. The CCC showed us this value by helping create the Greatest Generation and some of nation’s most valuable parks and outdoor resources.”
“Representative Grijalva has recognized the immense contributions made to the nation by our CCC Boys. It’s one of the truly great national stories that emphasizes what it means to be an American, overcome the odds, and achieve success even when economic circumstances are not at their best,” said Joan Sharpe, President of CCC Legacy, the CCC alumni organization. This year to honor the 80th Anniversary, CCC Legacy will host its annual gathering and reunion in Tucson, Arizona in conjuction with Southwest Conservation Corps. Sharpe explains that it will be another excellent opportunity for some of the CCC Boys to connect with the current generation of Corpsmembers and pass along the wisdom and details of their experiences.
A 1936 poll indicated that the CCC was favored by 82 percent of Americans, making it one of the most popular “New Deal” programs created to help Americans during what was the nation’s worst economic downturn. Last year, a study commissioned by the The National Parks Conservation Association and National Park Hospitality Association found that 86 percent of American voters similarly support expanding the “use of citizen volunteerism and youth conservation corps in the parks.”
A new effort to establish a 21st Century Conservation Service Corps that reflects the legacy of the Civilian Conservation Corps has been a key element of President Obama’s America’s Great Outdoors Initiative. Eight federal agencies established a National Council to help guide the implementation of the program. A partnership of nonprofit partners and Corps programs has also been established to provide guidance on how to best coordinate and channel resources using currently established Corps as a “backbone” for reaching the goal of having 100,000 young people serving annually as part of the the initiative.
About Mt. Adams Institute:
Mt. Adams Insitute strengthens the connection between people and the natural world through education, service learning, career development and research. In 2014, MAI will launch VetsWork, a career development program for military veterans. Learn more at www.mtadamsinstitute.com or www.facebook.com/Mt.
About The Corps Network:
The Corps Network is the voice of the nation’s 127 Service and Conservation Corps. Currently operating in every state and the District of Columbia, Corps annually enroll more than 27,000 young men and women in service every year. Since its creation in 1985, The Corps Network has provided national leadership and promoted the growth and quality of its member Corps as they provide education, workforce development, and an ethic of stewardship to diverse youth who address important community and conservation needs. Each year Corps mobilize an additional 289,000 community volunteers who work alongside Corpsmembers to generate 638,684 additional hours of service every year, at an estimated value of $14,140,463. For more information visit www.corpsnetwork.org
About CCC Legacy:
The Civilian Conservation Corps Legacy represents the alumni of America and strives to bring awareness to the heritage of the CCC, CCC alumni, their programs and accomplishments. For many years, alumni across America have elevated their heritage though consistently reminding citizens, historians, and natural resource agencies of its great impact on the American culture. Please join the effort to continue the legacy of the Civilian Conservation Corps. Learn more atwww.ccclegacy.org
Mt. Adams Institute is pleased to announce that it has Wilderness Ranger positions on the Okanogan Wenatchee National Forest and the Mt. Hood National Forest. These positions involve lots of hiking in remote, back country settings, trail maintenance, visitor education and loads of time outside in some of the best landscapes in the country!
To read a review of last year’s wilderness rangers’ experience, check out this blog post: wilderness season wrap-up
Learn more about the Okanogan Wenatchee National Forest Position.
Learn more about the Mt. Hood National Forest Position.
If interested, send your resume to firstname.lastname@example.org. Don’t delay, these will fill up fast!
MAI is pleased to announce that we will continue to work with the Forest Youth Success (FYS) program in 2013.
FYS provides summer jobs for Skamania County youth that support the work of natural resources management agencies like the Forest Service and Fish and Wildlife Service. Every year nearly fifty students get selected to be a part of this important program.
Now you can be a part of the program as an adult Crew Leader. FYS is currently accepting applications for positions that run from June 21 to August 23. Positions pay $15/hour. If interested, learn more here. Tell the Program Director, Caleb, that you heard about the opportunity through MAI.