New Fellowship Program Seeks to Develop the Next Generation of Park Stewards and Sustain New York City’s Investment in its Parks and Natural Areas
The New York City Department of Parks & Recreation is seeking applicants for the new NYC Parks Fellowship and Conservation Corps Program. Announced by Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg in his 2013 State of the City address, the Conservation Corps will help to improve the resiliency of New York City’s parks and beaches by engaging a group of 30 participants in public service and introducing them to park management, horticulture, environmental education and recreation, conservation, and sustainability. Beginning September 2013, the Conservation Corps program will support priority projects, provide valuable work experience, and foster the next generation of leaders dedicated to protecting and enhancing the City’s parks and natural resources.
“Under the leadership of Mayor Bloomberg and Deputy Mayor Harris, our City’s open spaces and parks have benefitted from new City investment and from the support of our partner agencies, the City Council, non-profit partners, and residents,” said NYC Parks & Recreation Commissioner Veronica M. White. “It is now our task to ensure that these gains are maintained and that our parks will continue to be enjoyed by all New Yorkers. The NYC Parks Fellowship and Conservation Corps program will be vital to ensuring the high-quality of our Parks, to completing the restoration of our beaches, and in helping to create a greener, more resilient New York City for generations to come.”
The NYC Parks Fellowship and Conservation Corps Program is a 40-week, paid work experience that includes on-the-job training and mentoring. Participants will support priority projects, such as the hands-on restoration of natural areas, including the forests, marshes, and trails damaged by Hurricane Sandy, efforts to connect New Yorkers to fitness, education, and other recreational programming, and community engagement and volunteer initiatives, as well as a range of administrative projects. This professional work experience will be complemented by regularly-scheduled group service projects and ongoing career development opportunities, with the intent of preparing participants for careers in the environmental sector and public service.
Participants will be selected through a competitive application process. Applications are due by May 1, 2013 and participants will begin the program in September 2013. Applications can be downloaded from the NYC Parks website at http://www.nyc.gov/parks.
The NYC Parks Fellowship and Conservation Corps program is supported by a $3 million grant from the Mayor’s Fund to Advance New York City. NYC Parks is currently seeking funds to support a second year of the program, which would begin with new program participants in the summer of 2014.