National Park Service
SCIP Youth Summit
The Student Career Intake Program (SCIP) is a partnership program that involves youths from various Massachusetts NPS sites. Each year the SCIPers come together to host a youth summit to show appreciation to all the educational youth programs that are associated with the National Park Service/Environmental agencies. Since we are all youths it was a good idea for the SCIPers to host it because we are in the same age group.
Previous years I’ve been to the Youth Summits when I was part of an educational youth program in the summer and it was a bit dry. So this year we tried to make the day fun and interesting. On the day of the Youth Summit, the SCIPers introduced themselves letting everyone know who we are, what we do, and what park we work for. Then we followed it by calling out the other educational youth programs letting them introduce themselves and letting us know what they do.
We also hosted some important people during that day. For example Michael Quijano-West who is Superintendent of Salem Maritime National Historic Site. Michael has been the superintendent for only about six months. He gave us his knowledge and told his journey of how he got involved with the National Park Service and where it has taken him. Michael also gave us some words of wisdom and stressed that you at least finish school even if you’re not looking for a career in the Park Service. Education is an important tool. That is something I took from Michael because I constantly have to remind myself I won’t be able to go anywhere without it. Also superintendents Bruce Jacobson from BOHA and Celeste Bernardo from LOWE were in attendance as they have always showed their support to the program and continue to watch it grow.
As the day went by we got into a scavenger hunt activity to get the youth from the educational groups engaged with the SCIPers. The scavenger hunt activity was a bunch of questions in a table format that apply to the SCIPers. So if the question applied to any one of the SCIPs then they would put your name on that question till they fill up the board. When they were done they redeemed a ticket to enter the raffle for some cool prizes. Also during the day we had the World Café event. That event is where each group had a table with their poster board posted with pictures of what they did this summer. We had lunch from Subways which definitely raised the bar a bit. They were surprised as I was because I heard we were having box lunches but didn’t expect Subways to be it.
This year’s SCIP participants and last year’s participants definitely worked hard in coordinating the summit considering the fact that we were right on schedule with the agenda. The summit means a lot because it’s one of the big highlights for each year in SCIP. It demonstrates growth in terms of maturity but also guidance in knowing how to lead. The most important of all is how we bring the kids together to share their experience this summer and how they’ve left their host sites better than it was before. It’s a day also to acknowledge the folks who put the summit together in terms of raising enough money for the SCIPs to run the summit, but also for the youths who have been given a chance to work and learn at the same time. In all we had about a hundred and sixty kids participate at our Youth summit. We hope the success from this year’s summit continues on to next year.