The first days of the new year mark a change in the solar calendar and a return of longer, brighter days to Teton Science Schools and Jackson Hole. Over the first weeks of January daylight grows to more than 9 hours long, mule deer forage and bed in the hills above town, and the Teton Science Schools’ Winter AmeriCorps volunteers arrive at Coyote Canyon in their own seasonal migration. On January 4th, eight such students of field education arrived at the Jackson Campus of TSS. They will remain for several months in their quest to naturalize, engage in community service, and develop skills in education and winter ecology.
This winter’s interns hail from a variety of locales and experiences. Many have worked in educational positions for several seasons and are already showing telltale signs of forming another fantastic, tight knit group. During their first two weeks on the Jackson Campus, they will undergo a variety of trainings as they get up to speed on life and learning in ‘the canyon’. In a short time the AmeriCorps team will fledge from their observation roles and begin co-teaching in the field. In addition, they’ll take sole ownership over meal-management, daily weather collection with students, and teaching morning and evening programs to visiting school groups.
The AmeriCorps interns’ presence benefits the broader Jackson Hole community as well, through community service projects. This winter they’ll choose between four stellar service projects; developing after school programs for the Teton Valley School District, creating interpretive exhibits for the Jackson Hole Children’s Museum, furthering the ‘Wild Neighborhoods Project’ with the Jackson Hole Conservation Alliance, or expanding recycling programs with Teton Valley Recycling.
Since its inception, the Teton Science Schools’ AmeriCorps program has trained 133 individuals in the skills of field education. Following their service with TSS, many continue to roam the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem and can be found in a variety of educational and community-oriented roles around Jackson Hole. For more information on TSS AmeriCorps programs contact firstname.lastname@example.org.