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Opportunities for Young People

The Forest Service has many opportunities for young people, from early childhood education and volunteering to post graduate work. For employment, you have several options:

  • Pathways opportunities
  • Service work through our partners
  • Youth Conservation Corps
  • Job Corps
Photo of a young woman standing by a body of water, rimmed with trees. She makes marks on a clip board with a pencil, a scarf wrapped around her head and a bright orange life vest.

Pathway to success

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The Pathways Program provides a unique path toward federal careers for students and recent graduates:

  • Learn valuable career skills that can serve you for a lifetime
  • Become part of a team dedicated to serving the land
  • Get the chance to fight wildfires on an apprenticeship
  • Work toward eligibility to become a full-time employee (certain requirements apply)

Programs include the Internship Program, Recent Graduates Program and the Presidential Management Fellows Program. Read the FAQ or find jobs with the Forest Service on USAJOBS.gov.

Work with our Partners 

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Our partners, including those in the 21st Century Conservation Service Corps, offer excellent ways to serve the Nation’s public lands and develop a stewardship ethic. The opportunities are available through partnerships we have with:

  • Tribal entities
  • Federal, state, and local governments
  • Private and non-profit sectors
  • Youth and conservation corps
  • Veterans programs 

Find out about specific programs, contact a Forest Service volunteer coordinator.

Youth Conservation Corps

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You can find paid summer work experience on many national forests and grasslands through our Youth Conservation Corps. U.S. citizens or legal residents ages 15 to 18 are encouraged to apply to be considered for an opportunity to:

  • Work outdoors with other young people on crews
  • Learn about conservation stewardship
  • Get training in skills necessary for field work
  • Gain good work ethic and interpersonal communication skills

If you are interested and meet the requirements, mail an application to the forest or grassland where you are interested working. 

Learn a career, earn a diploma

Job Corps is a free education and training program that helps low-income young people 16 or older learn a career, earn a high school diploma or GED, and find and keep a good job.

  • Learn life-changing skills
  • Live and learn in beautiful surroundings
  • Learn trade or conservation-related skills

Related blogs:

Employment and Mentoring Opportunities Support Youth and Veteran Programs Across the U.S. 

USDA Marks 50th Anniversary of the Job Corps 

Veterans find training, jobs with the U.S. Forest Service 

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