The Chesapeake Conservation Corps, a program that provides career and leadership training for young people interested in environmental careers and Chesapeake Bay protection will be receiving 21 new participants.
This initiative, established by the Maryland Legislature in 2010, matches young people, ages 18-25, with organizations throughout the state for paid, one-year terms of service.
In its inaugural year, 16 Corps Volunteers worked on a variety of environmental initiatives including energy efficiency programs, restoration activities and clean-ups, water quality monitoring programs, reforestation projects and job training programs for youth.
Due to the success of last year’s program, the Corps has expanded this year to include 21 participants, who will gain valuable work experience and partner with local communities to advance conservation initiatives in Maryland.
At a recent kickoff, new Corps volunteers were introduced to the 21 Maryland watershed organizations, county governments, and other nonprofits at which they will serve for the next year. The Corps Volunteers are between the ages of 18 and 25 and bring diverse experience and backgrounds to their host organizations, ranging from international climate change and marine biology to experience working with volunteer organizations such as the Red Cross.
Four of last year’s Corps participants (25 percent) have already been hired by their host organizations as full time employees, thus providing sustained employment for young people in Maryland.
The program is funded by both the State of Maryland and the Chesapeake Bay Trust, with a generous contribution provided by Constellation Energy. Volunteers are provided with a stipend for one year in addition to on-the-job experience and technical training provided by the Chesapeake Bay Trust.
Corps volunteers also have an opportunity to enroll in environmental career certificate programs offered by the Chesapeake Area Consortium for Higher Education, a consortium of Maryland community colleges.
source: Chesapeake Bay Trust