Project Description

Student Conservation Corps provides high school youth with summer employment opportunities.


In 2020, three summer sessions will be offeredSession ASession B, and Sesson C. SCoCo applicants will have the option of applying for one, two, or all summer sessions.

To APPLY for SCoCo you must attend an Application Work Party

Saturday, March 7

Saturday, April 4

Sunday, April 19

All events are from 10 a.m.-12 p.m. at Pritchard Park

Meet at the upper parking lot near Japanese Memorial.

For more information, please contact SCoCo Program Leader Emily Helgeson at [email protected].


The Student Conservation Corps (SCoCo) is a paid fieldwork and volunteer opportunity enhanced with conservation education for local high school students.  The program is provided through a partnership between Bainbridge Island Metropolitan Parks and Recreation District (BIMPRD), Sustainable Bainbridge and the Parks Foundation.  The Parks Foundation was the first organization to fund SCoCo and has helped to support the program for seven continuous summers.

SCoCo brings the energies and passions of youth to local environmental work through four program components: a series of spring volunteer application work parties, a paid spring break work program, a paid summer work program, and a fall volunteer planting program.

The employment SCoCo provides to youth in our community simultaneously develops a new generation of environmental stewards while making progress in the battle against noxious weeds on Bainbridge Island. SCoCo members work to control invasive weeds in our island’s parks and protected open spaces, methodically achieving goals outlined in the Park District’s Invasive Plant Management Plans. In the past 5 years SCoCo has made a significant dent in noxious plant infestation at Blakely Harbor Park, Fort Ward Park, Pritchard Park and Waypoint Woods. We have cleared ivy from over 11,000 trees in over 400 acres. Corps members have worked enthusiastically to make SCoCo the most effective local weed control effort to date. During the Summer Session, local educational speakers present cutting-edge conservation education and career advice to Corps members during their lunch hour.

Program Coordinator: Emily Helgeson, BIMPRD Natural Resources Coordinator
Emily took over as SCoCo Program Coordinator in 2015. She is also the Coordinator of Let’s Pull Together, a Sustainable Bainbridge initiative focused on Scotch broom management.  Her interest in land conservation and stewardship on Bainbridge Island was sparked during her attendance of the 2013 Graduate Program at IslandWood. Emily holds a M.Ed. in Curriculum and Instruction, a B.A. in political science, and a minor in environmental studies, all from the University of Washington.

Emily Helgeson, BIMPRD Student Conservation Corps Program Coordinator.
Email: [email protected]          Phone: 206-842-2306

What SCoCo participants say about the experience:

“This program definitely tested my physical endurance/stamina but also was immensely satisfying. I enjoyed getting to know people I’d never met before and worked hard with the knowledge that what I was doing did make a difference…Thanks again for giving me this amazing experience!”

“Thanks for another great year of SCoCo! I think we had an awesome group this year . . . I enjoyed all of our speakers and I also enjoyed being able to work at different parks this year – it made the program more interesting and allowed us to tackle a greater variety of projects.”

 “The Student Conservation Corps is AWESOME! Also, we’re saving the earth and all that, rather than flipping burgers.”

“SCoCo manages to employ kids, get them outside, and care for parks all at the same time.”

A community-sponsored program

The Student Conservation Corps is a community-sponsored program. Over the past seven years SCoCo has been made possible with support from the following partners:

Bainbridge Island Parks Foundation • Bainbridge Island Metro Parks & Recreation District • Bainbridge Island Land Trust • Sustatinable Bainbridge  • The Bainbridge Community Foundation • The Associated Bainbridge Communities (ABC) Conservation/Education Foundation • The Washington Foundation for the Environment • Bainbridge Ace Hardware • Bay Hay and Feed • AmeriCorps • The generosity of many individual donors

Project Details


SCoCo provides critical stewardship for parks while offering meaningful employment for Island youth


Attend a spring application party to apply for summer 2020.