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

The Wilderness Education Center proactively reaches 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), which integrates leadership training with personal and professional development opportunities to create generations of socially engaged, environmentally aware park stewards.

With your support in 2014, the Wilderness Education Center’s student rangers shared information about Yosemite with thousands of people, through campus tours, educational presentations, field trips and stewardship projects in the park, and more.

By providing a place where youth can become engaged in national parks, Yosemite is helping build relationships with local communities.

Partnering with UC 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.