Project overview: Recruit and train a Tribal intern to help document, restore, and protect sensitive cultural and natural resources, as well as support the Tribal liaison.

How your support helps: Local American Indian people have long lived and worked in Yosemite National Park, mostly as laborers and service workers. It’s time they also made up a larger percentage of the employees of the National Park Service. 

The demographics of the Yosemite workforce — and the workforce of the National Park Service as a whole — do not reflect the rich diversity of American society today. This disparity affects how the National Park Service is perceived, making it difficult for the agency to hire and retain BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and People of Color) staff and connect with historically underserved communities. 

In 2023, Conservancy donors funded the hiring of a Native intern with connections to the seven associated Tribes of Yosemite within Yosemite’s Resource Management and Science division. The goal of this is twofold: The park will benefit from the Tribal intern’s contributions and the intern will benefit from on-the-job training and work experience to inform their career. 

This year: In 2024, the Tribal intern will further develop skills, explore interests, and apply their expertise to support the Tribal liaison. In addition, the intern will continue focusing on Native American, young adultrecruitment efforts and planning for the Yosemite Ancestral Stewards Crew. 

Project partner: Yosemite National Park

Irene Vasquez

Resources Management and Science, Yosemite National Park

Project Notes

“A diverse and inclusive workforce helps us better meet our mission in protecting natural and cultural resources, and in interpreting stories and history that have been excluded or misrepresented.”