Youth Field Science Opportunities

YOLO Expeditions

The Youth Outdoor Leadership Opportunity is a free, five-day summer science expedition in mid-June for local 9th-12th graders to engage in local climate action and watershed restoration efforts.

Surrounded by the gorgeous Sierra Mountains, students get a chance to learn about ecology and build skills in real time:

  • Conduct hands-on field work and meadow restoration research
  • Collect necessary data used to help answer some of California’s most pressing environmental questions
  • Connect with teammates throughout the expedition and discuss important environmental justice issues
  • Hone important leadership skills
  • Explore the beautiful landscapes of the North Yuba Watershed

Students who are selected to participate in our YOLO program spend a week on a fully funded research expedition, studying meadows in Tahoe National Forest alongside environmental scientists and other students.

View Program Details

Earthwatch Expeditions

Since 2013, SYRCL has hosted a yearly Restoring Sierra Meadows expedition for students interested in STEAM careers to work alongside environmental professionals and assist with SYRCL’s restoration projects.

In partnership with the Earthwatch Institute and Tahoe National Forest, young adults from a variety of ethnic and socio-economic backgrounds have the opportunity to participate, promoting outdoor equity and inclusion.

This program allows students to understand biodiversity, hydrology and how restoration efforts reduce human impacts through a number of hands-on learning and research activities, such as:

  • Collecting soils to be tested for carbon sequestration
  • Taking vegetation surveys to study the biodiversity of the meadow vegetation
  • Sampling groundwater levels and stream channel depths, along with other monitoring techniques

Student participation not only offers important hands-on experience, but also contributes valuable data to SYRCL’s research. To find out more, follow the links below:

“[This] glimpse into the life of a field scientist made me more confident in my decision to pursue environmental science [as a career].” 

– Youth Field Science Participant about an Earthwatch Expedition

YOLO Program Information

Student Qualifications

Applying students must be:

  • Bear and Yuba Watershed 9-12 grade students*
  • Available to attend and orientation and work 5 days in the summer
  • Be willing to work as part of a team.
  • Comfortable with physical work and hiking. 
  • Creative thinkers and motivated learners. 
  • Excited to work in a team dynamic with peers & local scientists. 

*Preference will be given to students from Nevada, Yuba, Placer, Sierra and other counties within the Yuba Watershed boundaries, but other students in the Central Valley region may still apply. 

Latest Updates

We post news about Youth Field Science Opportunities throughout the year on our website. Sign up for our newsletter to get updates directly from SYRCL!

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Questions? Contact Monique!

Monique Streit

Education Director

(530) 265-5961 ext. 218