Teen Fellowship Position

The Slide Ranch Teen Fellowship Program is an annual service-learning program for teens interested in organic agriculture, animal husbandry, land stewardship, environmental education and applied leadership. Monthly meetings take place at Slide Ranch in Muir Beach, CA, and North Bay elementary schools. The Teen Fellowship Program offers an immersive experience for a dedicated cohort of students to cultivate community and personal growth in connection with Slide Ranch and to share this experience as environmental youth leaders, facilitating educational programs for summer campers and elementary school students.  

What is Slide Ranch?

Slide Ranch is a non-profit, farm-based, environmental education organization located within the Golden Gate National Recreation Area, on coastal wildlands just north of San Francisco. The mission of Slide Ranch is to connect children to nature. We cultivate healthy bodies and minds and foster future generations of environmental stewards. By farming, cooking, caring for animals and exploring wilderness and the coast, we teach people of all ages to see the connection between their own health, a healthy food system and a healthy environment. 

Position Components:

The Slide Ranch Teen Fellowship Program brings together a cohort of motivated, environmentally-conscious teens for a series of immersive project-based workshops. The fellowship trainings are designed to foster self-awareness and cooperative community, practice environmental stewardship and organic farming, and develop environmental youth leaders and educators.  Workshops include an introduction to the bioregion and history of Slide Ranch, principles and practices of organic farming, humane animal husbandry, and environmental sustainability as well as natural history and stewardship of trails, tidepools, and ocean. Fellows also receive training in student-centered, multi-sensory teaching approaches and curriculum designed for off-site programming at elementary schools.The fellowship runs from January through early December with one training session per month at Slide Ranch, including three overnight camping experiences. The program has three main goals: to cultivate personal growth and community for teens, foster environmental stewardship and empower youth as leaders for the environment, and to amplify Slide Ranch’s mission by providing in-depth mentorship to teens who will lead programming in low-income elementary school classrooms. 

The three seasons of the fellowship build on each other as fellows gain a range of skills.

In the spring season (Jan.-May), fellows experience, behind-the-scenes, what it takes to manage an organic farm on national recreation area land and they develop their connection to Slide Ranch. Fellows participate in projects alongside our ranch managers, developing skills in animal husbandry, organic gardening and wildlands stewardship.

During the summer (June-Aug.), fellows receive training in best practices of environmental education. They participate in one week of Slide Ranch summer camp alongside a Teacher-in-Residence mentor, leading hikes to the tide pools, cooking from the garden, collecting eggs and milking goats with a group of young campers.

Fall (Sept.- early Dec.) is the culminating season in which Teen Fellows make an impact in the greater Bay Area community and share their skills and passions with elementary students. Pairs of fellows engage an elementary school classroom for three visits during Sept.-Dec., teaching one-hour lessons focused on food systems and our interconnection with the environment including hands-on activities like composting with worm bins, sowing seeds, cooking and wool crafts.  Fellows will work with their partner and mentors from Slide Ranch’s program team to develop, implement and debrief their lessons. The fellowship ends in December with a celebratory graduation ceremony.

Students interested in extending the fellowship into the spring will be further empowered to take a leadership role in the next cohort of Teen Fellows and to continue working with their elementary school group for several more class visits. Upon completion of the fellowship, teens will have earned over 60 community service hours and excellent experience and references for future endeavors: college applications, career path, etc. This fellowship experience is relevant to fields of ecology and environmental science, marine biology, plant and soil science, education, non-profit management, organic farming and animal science.  

Applicant Qualifications:

All applicants must be:

  • Interested in developing skills in agriculture, animal care, land stewardship, education, and leadership. 

  •  Ages 13-18, current 8th graders through high school Juniors (including home school equivalent) are welcome to apply.

  • Committed to monthly training sessions, including 3 overnight programs, and one week of summer day camp. Please note: training sessions will take place on Saturdays, with overnights running Saturday-Sunday. Elementary school visits will take place during regular school hours.

  • Able to provide their own transportation to and from Slide Ranch and to local elementary schools in the fall. Slide Ranch will help coordinate carpooling.

Application Process:

  • Applications are due by November 15, 2019 and training begins in January.

  • All Teen Fellowship applicants are required to submit an online application and one letter of reference. Find a link to our application below.