Wetland Stewards Scholarship Recipients Announced
Watsonville Wetlands Watch announced the recipients of scholarships for the 2017 graduating Wetland Stewards interns. The Wetland Stewards Program is a hands-on, experiential science after- school program with a mentoring component provided for Pajaro Valley High School students.
Thanks to the generosity of several supporters, Watsonville Wetlands Watch was able to award four scholarships to past and present senior Wetland Stewards. The Haifley Family Scholarship went to Nuria Garcia (Class of 2016), the Freedom Lions Club scholarships went to Dulce Garcia and Maria Perez, and the Hofmeister scholarship went to Maria Perez. Four of the twelve stewards are graduating from Pajaro Valley High School and will go on to study at the University of California Davis, the University of California Berkeley, California State University Los Angeles and San Francisco State University.
The Wetland Steward interns are trained in indoor and outdoor classrooms by the Watsonville Wetlands Watch’s education staff, by visiting scientists and experts, and through the Stewards’ own mentoring of students. The Stewards work with Watsonville Wetlands Watch staff and docents to lead visiting elementary and middle school groups during after school programs offered throughout the Pajaro Valley Unified School District. They develop leadership skills and serve as positive role models to the younger students. Middle and Elementary students report an increase in their knowledge and understanding of the importance of Watsonville’s wetlands, their comfort and enjoyment in spending time outdoors, their desire to improve the environment, and their interest in sharing this with friends and family.
Ninety-nine Pajaro Valley High School students have graduated from the Wetland Stewards program since the program’s inception in 2007 and over 90% have gone on to attend college. Education Programs Director Emily Howard states: “We are thrilled to be a part of supporting these incredible young people as they become environmental leaders. Our hope is to see our Wetland Stewards expand their knowledge in college and bring that expertise back to the Watsonville community.”
A new group of twelve Wetland Stewards interns were hired this past spring and will start the program this fall at Pajaro Valley High School. For more information about Wetlands Stewards visit watsonvillewetlandswatch.org/wetland_stewards.htm.
Each year, Watsonville Wetlands Watch’s education programs serve over 2500 students and partners with many local, State, and federal agencies to restore wetlands and wildlife habitat throughout the Watsonville Slough System.
For more information please visit the website at www.watsonvillewetlandswatch.org or visit our Watsonville Wetlands Watch page on Facebook.