Preparing NYC Youth For Green Jobs
This summer, 12 high school students are gaining a competitive edge in the green jobs market through Trees New York’s Young Urban Forester Summer Internship Program. This six-week, paid internship introduces students to a variety of career opportunities in the environmental field through comprehensive classroom studies, hands-on field work and interaction with community members and professionals.
Students are developing their environmental literacy and stewardship skills through lessons on urban forest conservation, restoration and planning. Topics include tree biology, tree maintenance, plant identification, storm water runoff, climate change, the urban heat island effect and invasive species identification. Students receive a license that certifies them to legally prune trees owned by the city. This official recognition motivates the interns and promotes environmental stewardship. Trees New York’s partner Sunnyside Community Services is helping students develop job readiness skills including resume writing, interview techniques and job etiquette.
The 12 interns are gaining familiarity with the technologies commonly used in the environmental fields as they inventory and map street trees in Western Queens. Several guest speakers are sharing their experiences with the students including Eric Dalski, of Highview Creations, a green roof and vertical garden design-build firm.
Fun and interactive field trips bring students to unique destinations throughout the five boroughs including the Brooklyn Grange, a commercial organic farm located on a neighboring Queens building rooftop.
At the close of the six week program, students will give a final presentation of their work to community stakeholders.