Youth Ambassadors for Wilderness
About the Youth Ambassadors
for Wilderness (YAW) Program
YAW is a summer program developed for high school students interested in becoming the next generation of Wilderness leaders
The curriculum focuses on expanding participants' knowledge of Wyoming's wild places through advocacy and stewardship
Students will explore wild places in their own backyards, shadow professionals in the field, and work alongside WWA staff to learn the ins and outs of public land management
The curriculum is rooted in Place-Based Education best practices, and will unfold in an array of outdoor classrooms
The program is designed around a flexible curriculum to match student interests and creativity
YAW is offered to students free of charge thanks to our generous donors and grant support
NOTE: NEW for YAW 2020, the program will take place over the course of a consolidated 10 days in early August! In past years we have spread the program out throughout the summer. Our intention is to give students more immersion in both the YAW program content and community.
How to Apply to YAW 2020
Submit the following application materials by April 1, 2020:
- YAW Application (click button below to download)
- A 2-page essay, 3-minute video, or an art medium submission on why you want to become a wilderness leader
- 1 letter of recommendation from a teacher or community member
Send materials for the Youth Ambassadors for Wilderness program to Peggie dePasquale by either email or snail mail.
- Mail: PO Box 848, Jackson WY 83001
- Drop off: 685 S Cache St, Jackson WY 83001
For more information, contact Peggie dePasquale at
(631) 871 3707 or email her at email@example.com.
of Wilderness Leaders!
YAW Students taking a break on their Backpacking Trip into the Palisades Wilderness Study Area in 2018
Students using Cross Cut Saw for Trail work
An overview of the program
Explore some of Wyoming's wildest places
Participate in ongoing discussions on wilderness management led by a local Wilderness Ranger of the US Forest Service
Learn the basics of campaign building through a day long Advocacy Training
Receive mentorship from active public land and wildlife stewards from your community
Develop essential Leave No Trace land ethics & camping skills on a multi-day backpacking trip with your Wilderness Ranger
Master trail work skills with real world tools and projects
Engage in interpretive outdoor lessons each with a unique wilderness theme lead by local subject-matter experts
Boost your resume for your future college and job applications
Build an action plan for how to best share your experience with family, friends and the greater community
Make friends from around the state who share your interests!
Complete a final action project on a Wilderness theme to share with your friends, family, & school
YAW 2019 students navigating with a map deep in the Gros Ventre Wilderness
Earn Your Wilderness Badge
The Wilderness Badge
WWA is dedicated to teaching our youth the values of wilderness and engaging them in the outdoors to explore the mountains, rivers, deserts and high plains that make up Wyoming's public wild lands. Our Wilderness Badge program, created by a former Young Ambassadors for Wilderness student, features a curriculum that will inspire youth (and adults!) to learn about and protect Wyoming's wild places.
Keep Wyoming Wild
Created by Izzy Dickinson, a former YAW student, the purpose of the Wilderness Badge program is to encourage youth to make a personal connection with the outdoors through education, community service, and inspiring and creative projects that revolve around our wild places. After learning about Wyoming’s wild places and creating experiences of her own in the outdoors, Izzy was inspired to share her knowledge and encourage others to “Keep Wyoming Wild.” Izzy earned her Girl Scout Silver Award by creating this curriculum and badge design for WWA.
Download and complete the age-specific Badge Work, read the recommended books, sign the Wilderness Pledge and mail to WWA to earn your Wilderness Badge and be a part of the movement to Keep Wyoming Wild!
Links to all documents can be found below. Send us your completed work (don't forget to include your return address) and we will send you your badge.
Wyoming Wilderness Association
P.O. Box 6588
Sheridan, WY 82801
Program may be completed independently or with the help of an adult. Share your photos with us along the way! Upload images to Facebook or Instagram as #keepWYwild.
Izzy Dickinson | Courtesy Photo