Conservation Corps partners with Minnesota Department of Agriculture to create two new positions

PRESS RELEASE
Conservation Corps Minnesota & Iowa

June 26, 2017
For immediate release

CONTACT
Brian Hubbard
651.274.8059
Brian.hubbard@conservationcorps.org

Conservation Corps partners with Minnesota Department of Agriculture to create two new positions

Saint Paul, Minn. — Minnesota Department of Agriculture (MDA) recently welcomed two Conservation Corps members for a new seven-month apprenticeship position. Jessica Christianson and Elizabeth Bailey will serve as Agriculture and Water Outreach Corpsmembers in Perham and Rochester, respectively. They will work alongside natural resource professionals with MDA supporting the work of the Minnesota Agricultural Water Quality Certification Program (MAWQCP). Christianson and Bailey will learn hands-on skills in managing soil and water resources while providing assistance to the MAWQCP certification process.

Christianson and Bailey were hired through the Individual Placements program, a program of Conservation Corps Minnesota that has placed over 50 AmeriCorps members throughout Minnesota and Iowa. Headquartered in Saint Paul, Conservation Corps provides meaningful work for young people in managing natural resources, responding to disasters, conserving energy and leading volunteers.

Individual placements serve as AmeriCorps members and receive a monthly living stipend as well as an education award to use towards qualifying education and student loan expenses. Educational credits may be arranged by the AmeriCorps member.

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Governor Dayton’s Budget Includes Appropriation of $385,000 to Conservation Corps Minnesota & Iowa

Funds would create natural resources and clean water

career paths for underrepresented youth

SAINT PAUL, Minn. – January 30, 2017 – Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton has recommended a general fund appropriation for the 2017-2018 biennium of $385,000 to Conservation Corps of Minnesota & Iowa (CCMI) to create science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) career paths for the state’s underrepresented youth. The funding is intended to improve potential to succeed in STEM-related natural resources careers, leading to increased career paths for diverse communities and positively impacting Minnesota’s environment for decades to come. The appropriation would continue into the “out” biennium (2019-2020).

“This is an outstanding opportunity to help those who might not otherwise have the chance to discover the beauty of our great outdoors and pursue a satisfying career that protects and fortifies our state’s great natural resources,” said CCMI executive director Teresa Spaeth. “This would be a win for these kids and a win for the state.”

Minnesota’s natural resources professional workforce is much less diverse than its citizenry. While other sectors are seeing increases in racially and ethnically diverse employees, their participation in the natural resources workforce remains low, especially at decision-making levels. Anticipated ongoing growth in public and private sector sustainability and natural resources employment creates an opportunity for these groups, and this appropriation is intended to increase the potential that minority and underserved populations participate in natural resource and sustainability career opportunities.

“Unfortunately, many Minnesota youth, especially among underserved communities, are not aware of the promising careers in these fields and are not enrolling in college degree programs that align with open positions,” Spaeth continued. “Additionally, research shows that youth participants from underserved communities benefit from counseling and mentoring to identify a career path and get feedback on their strategies to enter and thrive in it, and I find this particularly true in fields that pertain to natural resources. This appropriation would significantly increase the likelihood that minority and underserved populations could participate and succeed in natural resources and sustainability careers.”

 

$385,000 to Conservation Corps Minnesota & Iowa

January 30, 2017/add one

Conservations Corps has a history of benefitting its participants. Program evaluations and tracking show program alumni are better prepared to pursue a college education, followed by a career in the natural resources field. A growing number are able to earn high school or college credit as a result of their participation.

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About Conservation Corps Minnesota & Iowa

Conservation Corps Minnesota & Iowa provides hands-on environmental stewardship and service-learning opportunities to youth and young adults while accomplishing conservation, natural resources management and emergency response work. More information is available at www.conservationcorps.org.

Conservation Corps Minnesota & Iowa Celebrates Swearing in of One Millionth AmeriCorps Member

Conservation Corps joins with organizations throughout the nation to celebrate the one million men and women who have joined AmeriCorps

Saint Paul, Minn. — Every day in communities across Minnesota, Conservation Corps and its AmeriCorps members are making a powerful impact on some of the most critical issues facing our state. Whether responding to disaster, restoring critical habitat, improving access to public lands, or leading teenagers in hands-on conservation projects, AmeriCorps members serving with Conservation Corps are making a difference in our state and beyond.

Conservation Corps program honored with prestigious Abraham Lincoln Honor Award for Diversity, Inclusion and Outreach

Faces of Tomorrow initiative with the U.S. Forest Service aims to increase diversity in natural resources field

Saint Paul, Minn. — On September 13, 2016, a representative from Conservation Corps Minnesota & Iowa accepted the Abraham Lincoln Honor Award for Diversity, Inclusion and Outreach from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, at a ceremony in Washington, D.C. In partnership with Superior National Forest, the award recognizes the Corps for its Faces of Tomorrow initiative, a targeted approach to prepare diverse young adults for natural resource careers where women and people of color are underrepresented. The seasonal positions provide Conservation Corps AmeriCorps members direct relationships with employees of Superior National Forest in northeast Minnesota, hands-on skills training and forestry experience.

Conservation Corps Minnesota & Iowa receives accreditation for excellence in operations from national accrediting body

Corps Center of Excellence grants Accreditation to Conservation Corps Minnesota & Iowa following a rigorous review.

Saint Paul, Minn. — Following an in-depth evaluation of internal operations, financial management practices, risk management practices, governance standards and youth programming operations, Conservation Corps Minnesota & Iowa received accreditation from the Corps Center of Excellence, the national accrediting body for Service and Conservation Corps.

Conservation Corps program honored with Cultural Transformation Award

Faces of Tomorrow initiative with the U.S. Forest Service aims to increase diversity in natural resources field

Saint Paul, Minn. — On Thursday morning, a representative from Conservation Corps Minnesota & Iowa will accept a Chief’s Honor Award for Cultural Transformation from the U.S. Forest Service, at a ceremony in Washington, D.C. The award recognizes the Corps for its Faces of Tomorrow initiative, a targeted approach to help underrepresented communities gain skills and experience in the natural resources field. The seasonal positions provide Conservation Corps AmeriCorps members direct relationships with employees of Superior National Forest in northeast Minnesota, hands-on skills training and forestry experience.

Conservation Corps AmeriCorps members deploy for disaster relief in Saipan

Four-person crew will manage volunteers in wake of damage from Typhoon Soudelor

Saint Paul, Minn. — Early this morning, a crew of AmeriCorps young adults from Conservation Corps Minnesota & Iowa boarded a plane for Saipan, where Typhoon Soudelor made landfall on August 2 before heading to Taiwan, China and Japan’s Ryukuy Islands. The typhoon left at least 38 dead and many more injured, and displaced thousands. There is still no power on the island and running water has been restored to only some areas. Saipan is one of the Northern Mariana Islands, the U.S. commonwealth in the Western Pacific.

CCC alumni to join celebration on September 14

Conservation Corps to celebrate 80th birthday of CCC

St. Paul, Minn. — Conservation Corps Minnesota & Iowa will celebrate the 80th birthday of the Civilian Conservation Corps on Saturday, September 14 at the Minnesota State Fairgrounds DNR Park, from 4 to 10 p.m.

An expected 500 guests, including members of the original CCC, will enjoy Twin Cities-based bluegrass music by Steve Kaul & The Brass Kings, San Souci and The Farmhouse Band, food trucks, beer, a silent auction, Hammerschlagen and games for all ages. During the event, Corps alumni and stakeholders from the 1930s through today will have an opportunity to gather and reconnect.

Conservation Corps crew helps restore operations at Blue Mounds State Park

Winter storms disabled park and many cities in southwest Minnesota

April 23, 2013. Saint Paul, Minn. – Blue Mounds State Park staff called upon Conservation Corps Minnesota to help restore operations at the park after devastating winter storms earlier this month took down many trees and branches in the campground, located in Luverne, Minn. Gov. Dayton declared a state of emergency in the southwest Minnesota region, after sending in the National Guard to assist with recovery.

Conservation Corps Minnesota & Iowa honored by Missouri Legislature for Joplin tornado response

St. Paul, Minn. – On January 31, the Missouri House of Representatives will pass a resolution recognizing the service of Conservation Corps Minnesota & Iowa and others for their indispensible recovery efforts following the devastating tornado that struck Joplin on May 22, 2011. AmeriCorps members will also be recognized on the floor.

Conservation Corps Iowa crews deployed for Joplin tornado recovery

Ames, Iowa – Conservation Corps Iowa has deployed 10 corps members and a team leader to Joplin, Mo. for 30 days, to assist with search and rescue, debris clean-up, donations and volunteer management, following the devastating tornado that ripped through the town on May 22. Field Specialist Matt McKenney is leading the team, which is working alongside other AmeriCorps teams, including National Civilian Community Corps, AmeriCorps St. Louis, Washington Conservation Corps and Hoopa Tribal Civilian Community Corp.

Andersen employee assists with volunteer cleanup at Afton State Park

Volunteers and Conservation Corps Minnesota youth program members cleaned up a section of the scenic St. Croix River near Afton State Park’s beach and fishing pier on July 24. They pulled plants, shrubs and small trees that had encroached on the rocky banks. In three hours, their work was complete, opening a clear vista of the river for park visitors. The beautification project was made possible by the Fred C. and Katherine B. Andersen Foundation, which also supports youth participants from the St. Croix Valley.

Volunteer with the Summer Youth Corps

Conservation Corps Minnesota is seeking volunteers to help youth crews wrap trees to protect them from deer, remove buckthorn and help restore Afton State Park’s native prairie, oak savanna and bluffs that overlook the scenic St. Croix River. Participants will learn about the park’s history and how invasive species and other predators have affected natural habitats.

Conservation Corps helps Saint Paul homeowners save energy and money

Minnesota Conservation Corps has partnered with Neighborhood Energy Connection in Saint Paul to launch a home-energy conservation program. The four-member Home Energy Squad is installing compact fluorescent light bulbs, exterior-door weather stripping, programmable thermostats, efficient showerheads, water-heater insulation blankets and faucet aerators.