Youth Conservation Corps

Treks for Adults


Overview of Youth Conservation Corps

Work Outside, Build Community, and Learn About Southwest Conservation.

Are you an 18 to 20-year-old looking for professional development opportunities in the outdoor industry?

Join the 2023 Youth Conservation Corps to immerse yourself in Southwest conservation work, community living, and leadership skill development in the outdoors!

What is the Youth Conservation Corps?

The U.S. Youth Conservation Corps (YCC) is a summer youth employment program that engages young people, ages 18 to 20, in meaningful work experiences on national parks, forests, wildlife refuges, and fish hatcheries. Youth are engaged in fun, exciting work projects designed to develop an ethic of environmental stewardship and civic responsibility such as working on building and repairing trails; preserving and repairing historic buildings; removing invasive species; helping with wildlife and land research; and leading environmental education. YCC supports the 21st Century Conservation Service Corps, or 21CSC, mission to put thousands of America’s young people to work protecting, restoring, and enhancing America’s great outdoors.

  •  Affords members the opportunity to work and learn alongside federal employees in a wide range of natural and environmental projects
  • Assists youth to develop a life-long ethic of environmental stewardship and civic responsibility through team-based work projects and individual placements
  • Works to instill young adult awareness and appreciation of the public lands legacy and of the nation’s natural, cultural and  historic resources

The above information is from the U.S. Forest Service YCC webpage, which can be found here.

Crew Life: What to Expect

The YCC is a residential program, meaning once crew members arrive, the crew is expected to remain together during the entire duration of the 6-week session. Crews and their leaders will live and work together in a community living space 24/7, as well as cook and share meals in a community setting. Each crew member will be provided their own 2-person tent for the season and may sometimes have cabins available.

After a day of work, crew members will spend evenings at either their remote field camps or our Basecamp where they will have opportunities for leadership roles, play games on the field, and reflect on their day around a campfire. On their “off-time” the crew will engage in activities like rock climbing, exploring slot canyons, hiking, backpacking, mountain biking, and learning about the arts and cultures of the Southwest.

Who is Eligible?

We encourage all youth to consider applying for YCC jobs. To meet eligibility requirements, applicants must be:

  •  At least 18 years old at the start of enrollment and must not reach age 21 before completion of the program
  • A U.S. citizen or permanent resident of the U.S., its territories, or possessions
  • Have a valid U.S. Social Security number or have applied for a valid Social Security number
  • Able to fulfill the essential functions of the assigned work with or without reasonable accommodations
  • Actively committed and willing to complete the assigned work projects

Crew members must also commit to the full length of the program and will need to bring their own backpacking backpacks and appropriate clothing, including long-sleeve shirts, long pants, hiking boots, and work boots (hired crew members will receive a full packing list). Crew members need to be capable of walking up to 3 miles with 45lb packs upon arrival, with the expectation to eventually accommodate up to 7 miles with 45lb packs. We expect crew members to have a willingness to learn to use hands for tools, controls, and other objects and they will be expected to occasionally lift and move up to 50 lbs.

Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis and interviews will be scheduled as soon as possible. Open until all positions are filled.

To learn more about becoming a Zuni Mountain YCC Crew Member, call 505-248-0563. To apply, fill out the form linked to the Apply Now button below.



Age Range: 18-20

Gender: All welcome, Male, Female, Non-binary

Group Size: 8 crew members, 1 assistant crew leader

Instructors: 2

Wages: $384 stipend per week, plus food and lodging

Certifications may be available, including Cross Cut Saw Training, Leave No Trace, or Wilderness First Aid

6/26 - 8/9

Apply Now