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Youth Conservation Crew (ages 14-18)

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Youth Conservation Crew kayaking on the Willamette River
The Youth Conservation Crew (YCC) provides employment opportunities for a diverse population of Portland-area youth. Crews protect, restore, and manage Portland's parks and natural areas while developing job skills and exploring environmental career paths.
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Apply now to be a Crew Leader or Office Assistant (ages 21+) for Summer 2024

Lead a group of teenagers ages 14-18 as they work on trees, trails, habitat, gardens, and more. Help teens develop a love of nature in the city, and the skills and knowledge they need to protect it. We are hiring 10 crew leaders to lead the Community Gardens Crew, Natural Area Crew – Eastside, Natural Area Crew – Westside, Trail Crew, and Tree Crew. 

Click here for more information about each crew and what it's like to be a crew leader. 

Pay:  $22-24 an hour

Status: Open. Apply at Youth Conservation Crew Leader (CSA II) Application

Deadline: March 22, 2024

Eligibility: Be at least 21 years old by June 10, 2024; driver's license preferred. See application above for additional qualifications.


Apply now to be a Crew Member (ages 14-18) for Summer 2024

Looking for responsible teens who enjoy working outside and are excited to work with a diverse team. Join a crew focusing on trails, trees, community gardens, or natural areas.

Pay: $18 an hour

Status: Open. Apply at Youth Conservation Crew Member (CSA I) Application

Deadline: March 24, 2024

Eligibility: Age 14 - 18, willing and able to do hard work, dependable, excited to work with a diverse team, able to get to work sites on your own, and eligible to work in the United States.


About Youth Conservation Crew (YCC)

The Youth Conservation Crew provides employment opportunities for a diverse population of Portland-area youth. Crews protect, restore, and manage Portland's parks and natural areas while developing essential job skills and exploring environmental career paths.

Learn more about YCC's positive impact on our Crew Members and the city's parks and natural areas with our recent annual reports.


Eligibility for Employment - Crew Member Positions

  • You are between the ages of 14-18.
  • Turn in your own application and contact the employer yourself. A parent or guardian should not do it for you. This is one way we determine if you are ready for work!
  • Be willing and able to do hard work in the outdoors (often walking on uneven ground, in heat, cold, or rain).
  • Be dependable, responsible, and available - you can and will show up to work every day, on time.
  • Be excited to work with a diverse team. We encourage people of all races, ethnicities, gender identities, sexual orientations, and abilities to apply, as well as English Language Learners. Reasonable accommodations can be provided.
  • Eligible to work in the United States. 
  • Be able to get to work sites on your own. All worksites have a bus or TriMet MAX stop nearby. 

Work schedule

  • Summer Dates for Crew Leaders: June 10 - August 18, 2024
  • Hours for Crew Leaders: Monday (8:30am - 2:30pm); Tuesday - Friday (7:30am - 3:30pm) Crew Leaders and Office Assistant may begin working earlier than June 12 on a flexible schedule if available.
  • Crew Members:  Returning Crew Members start Monday June 24, 2024
  • Crew Member Orientation:   All Crew Members start orientation on June 25, 2024
  • Summer Dates for Crew Members:  June 25 - August 9, 2024
  • Hours for Crew Members:   Tuesday - Friday (8:30am - 2:30pm)
  • All youth hired during the summer can keep working on Saturdays during the school year.  Sign up for workdays as your schedule allows.

Pay

The hourly pay for Crew Members in 2024 is $18 an hour. The hourly pay for Crew Leaders ranges from $22-24 an hour.


Types of Crew Work

City Nature East Crew
Natural Area Crew is a great fit for teens interested in science, plants, and animals. 
WORK LOCATIONS: East, Northeast, and Southeast Portland

  • remove unwanted plants like ivy and blackberry
  • weed and water around young recently planted plants
  • practice and learn plant identification
  • learn about plants and animals 
  • build split rail fences 
  • work in or near forests, creeks, and fields

Community Gardens Crew
Community Gardens Crew is a great fit for teens who are interested in growing food, gardening, construction, and food justice. 

  • build and fix garden plots and paths
  • explore food justice and environmental justice
  • practice indigenous land care in the Native Gathering Garden with the indigenous community
  • weed and remove unwanted plants
  • work in the sun

Trail Crew 

Trail Crew is a great fit for teens interested in engineering, construction, and hard physical work!  WORK LOCATIONS: citywide 

  • build and fix trails  
  • build structures (rock walls, crib walls, split rail fences, and other structures) 
  • work with plants (a little)
  • learn about land, soils, and water 
  • trail crew is the most physically demanding job! 

Tree Crew

Tree Crew is a great fit for teens who care about trees and want to learn about how trees make our city healthier and more beautiful.
WORK LOCATIONS: East Portland and NE Portland

  • explore the city and map trees on an ipad or phone
  • care for newly planted trees at schools and parks
  • learn how to identify trees from all over the world
  • walk up to 3 miles a day, in sun and shade

West Side Nature Crew - No Ivy League 
The No Ivy League Crew is a great fit for teens interested in landscaping, science, plants, and animals. 
WORK LOCATIONS: Northwest and Southwest