Careers in Natural Resources Initiative: Inspiring the Next Generation

Initiative Vision: To work collaboratively to create more pathways to enable ALL young adults to be educated, prepared, and qualified to enter and maintain professional, sustainable natural resource careers.

Upcoming Events

Natural Resource Careers Training Workshop

Help young adults on their path to a natural resource career!

When: Wednesday, October 2 10:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.

Where: Scout Hut, Salida

Cost: This event is free and lunch is included!

Join us to develop a training model for using the “How-To Guide for Pursuing a Career in Natural Resources” in your programs. Attending organizations will receive kits with hard copies of the Career Guide and digital resources including activities, handouts, and customizable presentations.

Workshop Highlights: 

  • Get to know the How-To Guide for Pursuing a Career in Natural Resources - an in-depth career development tool for young adults - and how you can use it.
  • Participate in activities you can use to engage your audiences in natural resource careers.
  • Plan future training opportunities for your audiences using the tools provided.

For more information and to register go to



Initiative Resources


  Download                                        Visit                             



Listen                                                Attend a Career Fair

Webinar: Pathways to                              Download a Packet of 
Natural Resource Careers
                        Resources to Bring




Webinar: Tools to Support Youth Natural 
Resource Career Discovery and Development

About the Initiative

Background: The Careers in Natural Resources Initiative grew from an ongoing concern that youth conservation corps face difficulty guiding their alumni into natural resource careers. For alumni who do secure natural resource-related jobs, they do so by utilizing connections rather than accessing a deliberate program or institutionalized methodology. As we researched the issue, we realized that the problem was widespread and affects not only youth corps but many other youth-serving environmental organizations. We also learned that 1) land management agencies have a need for better qualified candidates and those from non-traditional backgrounds and 2) college and universities have difficulty attracting students from non-traditional populations to their natural resource degree programs.

Leadership: The Colorado Youth Corps Association and the Colorado Alliance for Environmental Education have agreed to serve as lead organizations to facilitate this initiative for the next two years. For more information or to get involved contact Lisa Eadens, Program Coordinator for CAEE at or 303.273.9527.

Goals and Supporting Projects:

 1. Raise awareness of natural resource careers opportunities for youth and career influencers.

Action 1: Participate in Existing Career Fairs

Many Denver-Metro area school districts and others across Colorado organize district-wide 8th grade career fairs. At these one or two-day events, thousands of 8thgrade students have the opportunity to learn about different careers. We encourage the natural resource community to exhibit at these fairs, where they could talk with hundreds of students about their career path, plug their organization, and get kids interested in what they do!

Are you attending a career fair? Download our Career Fair Packet of resources to bring with you!

Action 2: Work Gone Wild Career Exploration Program

In 2013, we developed the Work Gone Wild program in partnership with Goodwill Industries of Denver to provide teens with an in-depth look at different natural resource careers. Over the course of 3-5 days, youth visit the places where natural resource professionals work, hear about different jobs, participate in hands-on activities to build skills, and complete service learning projects. Past field trip locations include Barr Lake State Park, Rocky Mountain National Park, Marston Water Treatment Plant, City Park, the GrowHaus, the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, Edgar Mine, the Urban Farm at Stapleton and more! Since 2013, more than 130 students have participated in the program from Goodwill Industries of Denver and the Boys & Girls Clubs of Metro Denver. 

Read more about the Work Gone Wild program.

2. Reduce barriers in applying for local, state and federal jobs.

Action 1: Natural Resource Career Guide

An in-depth "How-To Guide for Pursuing a Career in Natural Resources" was published in June 2014 and updated in 2016 and 2017. The resource provides: (1) an overview of the content for easy navigation, (2) the full scope of natural resource careers and the education and training needed for those careers, (3) how to navigate the federal application process and tips for applying for a federal job, and (4) insight into state and local natural resource careers, where and how to apply for open positions and how to be a successful candidate.

Download the Guide (PDF - 44MB) 

Action 2: Natural Resource Careers Training Network

In 2016, a Natural Resource Careers Training Network formed in order to promote dissemination of the Career Guide to young adults throughout Colorado. Sixty career influencers from universities, high schools, non-profits and government agenices were trained in the Career Guide and additional resources to use the materials with their young adult audiences.

The next Natural Resource Careers Training Workshop will be held in Fall 2018. For more information please email Lisa Eadens at

3. Increase access to information about natural resource careers and jobs available.

Action 1: Get Outdoors Colorado Job Center

A one-stop clearinghouse of jobs and resources related to natural resource careers launched in March 2014. Visitors can search jobs by keyword, location, and job type as well as access related job links and resources.

Access the website at:



CAEE works to ensure everyone in Colorado has an opportunity to learn about the environment where they live. We value inclusiveness and welcome everyone to the field of environmental education.

1536 Wynkoop St, Suite 314, Denver, CO 80202
phone: 303-273-9527
Contact Us