what to expect
Depending on the schedules and requirements of your school, you can work with Greenway staff to tailor the internship program to meet the needs of your students. The Greenway Foundation is committed to providing opportunities in environmental education to students of all races, ethnicities, genders, gender expressions, sexual orientations, abilities, ages, national origins, socioeconomic status, religious affiliations, languages, and heritages. Please contact the Greenway Foundation if you have questions about our ability to serve your student population.
Greenway staff will set up an assembly to present the internship opportunity to students. Information and applications will be distributed to students.
Eligibility requirements for student participation will be established by Greenway and school staff. Applications will be reviewed and students will be selected based on their application, interview and eligibility. Typically the Greenway selects 4-8 students for each park location. A school can sign up for multiple park locations if they have large student interest.
Professional Development and Training
At the beginning of each semester, the Greenway will hold a two-day training consisting of leadership development, education theory, and training for each specific activity students will be responsible for teaching throughout the semester. Greenway can work with your school to develop a training schedule that works for students and staff. Training can happen in a two-day series (such as all-day Friday/Saturday) or in smaller pieces (such as two hours Tuesdays and Thursdays after school over two weeks).
River Rangers will develop leadership, confidence, and knowledge and skills in education by teaching activities for the Greenway Foundation’s SPREE field trips. SPREE (South Platte River Environmental Education) is the education arm of the Greenway Foundation and delivers programming to over 5,000 Denver Public School children each year.
Greenway staff will work with your school to choose at least five days during the semester for interns to come teach on one of SPREE’s field trips. Field trips run from 9:00am-2:00pm, so students will need to be excused from class for the days they are completing the teaching component to their internship.
To learn more about The Greenway Foundation’s SPREE program and its award-winning field trips, visit http://www.spreeweb.org
School Staff Commitments
In order to provide a meaningful and effective internship opportunity for students, we ask the school to designate a single staff person who is in charge of all coordination and communication with Greenway staff. From our experience, this is a key component to a successful internship program. Greenway staff can provide outstanding opportunities to students when they have the right information. We are committed to taking the time to understand each student’s strengths and challenges.
Evaluation and Credit
Supervisors will fill out a daily evaluation form that grades student performance on a series of skills. These evaluations will serve as a way to track student progress and depending on the school, students may earn an elective credit upon successful completion of the internship.
Greenway staff can work with schools to help shape the evaluation process in order to meet the specific needs of each school by adapting grading criteria used by internship supervisors and deciding how to award credit.
Transportation to Work Sites
It will be the responsibility of students to get themselves to and from work sites on time. In some cases, schools may choose to provide transportation for internship students via van or bus. For schools who are within close proximity to our field trip locations, the Greenway can rent a bike for students to use for the duration of the internship.
Employment Opportunities for Students
Upon completion of the Greenway River Ranger Internship, students will have the opportunity to apply for a paid summer job working at the Greenway’s award-winning summer camp in Denver. Students will work for eleven weeks continuing to develop valuable leadership and educator skills.
The Greenway Foundation is connected to a long list of organizations and agencies in environmental education, natural resources, and related fields. We will continue to be a resource for students as they seek other internships or careers in the green jobs sector. The Greenway Foundation is a member of the statewide organization, the Colorado Alliance for Environmental Education (CAEE) that acts as a clearinghouse for internships, scholarships, events, and professional development. Your students can have access to all this by connecting with the Greenway Foundation. The Greenway Foundation aims to foster lasting relationships with its interns and is committed to serving as positive role models and mentors for students.
Students and their legal guardians will sign a wavier at the beginning of their internship releasing the Greenway of any liability during their participation. Students will each fill out a medical form that the Greenway will keep on record for the duration of the internship program. (These documents will be destroyed upon completion of the program.) The Greenway Foundation requires all employees working with children to pass a background check, so all student interns must also meet this requirement.