Conservation corps looking for few good youth: Kupu accepting applications for programs

  • Courtesy photo

    Hawaii Youth Conservation Corps summer program members work at a lo‘i called Ho‘okua‘aina on Windward Oahu.

Kupu, Hawaii’s leading conservation and youth education organization, is accepting applications for its Hawaii Youth Conservation Corps summer and year-round Conservation Leadership Development programs.

Youth ages 17 and older living in Hilo and other parts of East Hawaii can apply for the free programs, which provide cultural and environmental education and job training opportunities throughout the island.


“Kupu’s HYCC summer and Conservation Leadership Development programs are the core of our conservation initiatives,” said John Leong, Kupu CEO. “These programs have helped so many of our program alumni to establish successful careers in Hawaii’s green jobs workforce.”

The seasonal HYCC summer program is a full-time, seven-week program available statewide. Select applicants in Hilo and East Hawaii will work in teams to engage in outdoor conservation work such as clearing invasive vegetation, planting native species, maintaining trails and parks, and restoring cultural and environmental sites throughout the island.

Team member applicants must be between 17 and 20 years old. Upon completing the program, they will receive volunteer and education award stipends and might qualify for college credit. Team leaders, who oversee team members, must be 21 years or older and also will receive an education award in addition to living allowances.

The HYCC summer program starts with a one-week training camp on Oahu for team leaders on May 29 and June 4 for members. The program ends July 20 followed by graduation ceremonies on each island.

This summer, Kupu is seeking up to 20 team members and four team leaders for its team in East Hawaii. Applications are available for both positions online at www.kupuhawaii.org/hycc-summer. The deadline to apply is Feb. 28.

For those interested in more extensive, entry-level job training opportunities, Kupu offers an eight-week summer or 10-month year-round Conservation Leadership Development program, in which individuals will be placed at a conservation and natural resource management nonprofit or government agency throughout the state or Pacific.


Applicants must be 17 years or older and if selected will receive living allowances and education award money to use toward higher education, while gaining mentoring and job-training working on in-office or outdoor field projects.

The eight-week summer program is from June 11 to Aug. 3. Applications are available online and due by Feb. 28. Positions for the extended, 10-month internship program start in October. Priority placement will be given to selected participants who apply by June 30. Applications and more information are available at www.kupuhawaii.org/conservation.