Haleakalā Spring Internship for Middle School Students
By Wendy Osher
Middle school students interested in the internship program at Haleakala National Park are reminded that the deadline to apply is January 31, 2013.
The Kupukupu ‘Āina spring internship program is geared toward students in grades 6 to 8, and is limited to 12 students selected through a competitive process.
Those selected will be introduced to park programs with opportunities for hands-on experience working alongside professional staff with a focus on native plant identification, invasive weed control, facilities maintenance, guided hikes, and outdoor safety education.
The program is designed to introduce local youth to park programs and generate interest in careers related to natural resources management, interpretation, and facilities management.
National Park Service officials say the program provides critical stepping stones to help youth develop marketable skills and professional contacts, as well as general knowledge and appreciation for Hawaii’s natural areas and species, some of which are the world’s best examples of endemism and adaptive radiation.
Now in its second year, the middle school program is one of three internship programs that were created at Haleakalā National Park in 2011. The others include Pōhai Maile, a high school summer program, and ‘Imi i ka Lama, an 8-week program also held during the summer months for college-age students.
There is no fee to participate in the week-long program, however, interested students must be Hawai‘i residents and available full-time between March 18-22, 2013. Interns are also eligible to receive a living allowance of $25 per day to help offset the cost of equipment and supplies they will need for the program.
Program hours are 7:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., not including travel time to and from the park. Free transportation to the park will be provided from designated sites. Neighbor island students are welcome to apply but must be able to provide their own housing on Maui.
Haleakalā National Park encompasses two regions: The Summit District on the upper slopes of Haleakalā, which reaches elevations between 7,000-10,000 feet and the Kīpahulu District that stretches along the East Maui coastline.
Additional details and application packets may be obtained by contacting the park’s Internship Coordinator, Kūhea Paracuelles, at (808) 572-4452 or via email at [email protected]