Snapshot of success: YES Program on pace for continued annual growth and success

Each year more teachers, students, and volunteers are participating in the Alliance’s Redbud Educational Programs, for grades 3-5 schoolchildren.  During the fall 2013 – spring 2014 school year, Alliance staff and volunteer educators hosted 64 field trips, serving 2456 students.  Over 43% of students came from underrepresented and underserved populations.  Since 2009, the YES Program has conducted 345 field trips, and educated 14,297 students!

This school year, 24 Alliance volunteers taught kids about the Texas Colorado River, the water cycle, water conservation, and watersheds, contributing a total of 895 volunteer service hours.  Our staff recruited and trained 17 new environmental educators this spring, and we celebrated our volunteers by treating them to ice cream, canoe, kayak, and SUP on the shores of Lady Bird Lake.

In addition, six interns dedicated 15 hours per week to the Alliance during the fall and spring seasons.  Hailing from academic institutions such as Texas State, St. Edwards University, and the University of Texas at Austin, these stellar students grew tremendously as environmental educators, public speakers, and event coordinators.  Their experiences at the Alliance helped guide and support their career development; one recently matriculated into a Graduate Degree Program in Water Resources Management at the University of Wyoming!

Austin area teachers continue to integrate the YES program into their teaching curriculum. Over 70% of field trips were from teachers that participated in previous years.  However that should not over-shadow the 30% that were new customers, demonstrating the YES program’s growth in popularity among area educators.

“Alliance staff were very well prepared, very courteous…and they provided a good platform for the inquiry and project based learning we do on our campus.”

– 5th grade Teacher, Laurel Mountain Elementary

2014_june_newsletter_Redbud1Alliance Fall 2013 Intern Margaret Yoo engages students about the water cycle