Caring for Yosemite shouldn’t stop at park borders. The Wilderness Education Center at the University of California, Merced, provides an incredible opportunity to connect Yosemite National Park with diverse youth in their own communities. This on-campus center provides awareness about natural and cultural resources through outreach, education and experience, while inspiring future leaders to think about issues affecting parks and wild places.

Through trips to Yosemite and on-campus speakers and events, the Wilderness Education Center is proactively reaching out to students so they can build relevancy to national parks in their communities. The center also provides primary support for the Yosemite Leadership Program (YLP) during the academic year.

By providing a place where youth can become engaged in national parks, we are creating a solid foundation for building relationships with Yosemite’s local communities.

Partnering with University of California, Merced and Yosemite National Park.

Jesse Chakrin

Park Ranger

Project Notes

College students have a cool factor that opens lines of communications with high-school students. We hope to instill in them an environmental ethic they will carry forward into whatever profession they choose.