Women of Wildernss (WOW) is a crew for Corps Members who identify as girls, young women, and/or young transwomen. This crew is designed to give Corps Members the chance to explore the conservation field in an environment focused on support, encouragement, and empowerment. Because conservation and other technical trades traditionally have been dominated by cis-men, studies have shown that similar underrepresented identities programs, such as all-women/transwomen programs can be highly effective in building confidence and inspiring them to enter these technical arenas. The members of this crew will be pushed to explore and learn together, and will expand their comfort zones as they build projects and live in a camp setting. Crew Members will benefit from the mentorship of highly-trained leaders, who will add a focus of empowerment, sharing, and support to the crews daily activities.
Note: Crew Members must be ages 15-18.
Almost 100 years ago (wow), the Civilian Conservation Corps was created to put men to work building National Parks and outdoor public spaces during the Depression. The camped and lived where they worked. We took the best parts of that model and improved it. Our Spike Crews are super diverse in social identities and ages and do way more than just build trails.
What are this year’s session dates? How many sessions can I work?
Our seasons are broken into sessions over the course of the summer and fall, with a “recharge” week between each session.
As a Youth Spike Crew Member*, you have Three Options
- Session 1 from June 15 until July 14
- Session 2 from July 20 until August 18 (session 2)
- Both Summer Sessions from June 15 until August 18
*Please note, youth Spike Crew Members MUST be Vermonters!
If you have any conflicts within the session, please let us know and we will see what we can do!
How old do you have to be?
Youth Crew Members are Vermonter’s between 15 and 18 years old.
How big are crews? And who else is on the crew?
Crews are made up of 6-8 Crew Members and 2 Crew Leaders.
Youth Crew Members are be from all over Vermont and Crew Leaders may be from all over the county.
How much do you get paid and how often?
Crew Members get paid every 2 weeks.
Youth Spike Crew Members make $10.78/hour.*
You work approximately 40 hours per week.
Note: VYCC takes $60/week from compensation for room and board costs.
When is the deadline to apply?
Crew Member applications are due on May 1, 2019.
Crew Leader applications are due on April 1, 2019.
What does the work day/week look like on a Spike Crew?
Spike Crews start their sessions at our Headquarters in Richmond, VT. After a few days of orientation or “Start-up”, crews hit the road and set up camp near their worksite. Crews spend some time getting camp set up before their first day on the job site with project sponsors from the area.
Spike crews work Monday through Friday 7:45 p.m. until 4:30 p.m. and spend their nights and weekends relaxing, completing necessary tasks around camp and running errands (grocery, laundry, etc!)
A typical day in the field looks like this:
6:00 a.m. Breakfast! NOMS!
7:45 a.m. Start your day at the worksite
10:00 a.m. Mid-morning break (15 minutes)
12:00 p.m. Lunch
12:30 p.m. WoRD*
1:00 p.m. Back to work
2:30 p.m. Mid-afternoon break (15 minutes)
4:30 p.m. End of the day
5:30 p.m. Start cooking or free time. Cooking responsibilities rotate throughout the crew!
6:30 p.m. Dinner
8:00 p.m. Evening Activities
9:30 p.m. ZZZZZZZ or at least everyone in tents.
What do crews do on the weekends?
A combination of errands and fun! Errands may include laundry, grocery shopping, and tool maintenance. Fun is dependent on the crew! Crews may explore the local area by going on a hike, hanging out in the town, checking out the farmers market or relaxing at camp!
Crews also will get together with other crews out in the field or come back to VYCC Headquarters for All Corps Meet-Ups.
Where do Spike Crews camp and what do the camps look like?
Camps are always at designating camping locations whether that be at a State Park, camping ground or along a trail system. We follow Leave No Trace© policies to leave pristine camps for those that come after.
There are designated areas for camping, cooking/eating, and bathroom “facilitrees”.
What food do Spike Crews eat?
What do you like to eat?!?! Crews work together to set menus for the week and go grocery shopping. Some classic VYCC meals include burritos, veggies from the VYCC Farm, pasta dishes, soup, one pot wonders, etc. The sky is the limit. Some crews have made their own bread to bring out too! Meals will have limited meat and dairy as there is limited refrigeration at the camps.
What gear do I need to bring?
Any personal gear, you’ll need to bring with you. This includes your water bottle, boots, sturdy clothing, raingear, backpack, etc. If this is challenge, please let us know as we can work with you!
We provide Spike crews with tents, cook gear, and all the tools, equipment and transportation to the worksite your crew needs.
What are typical projects?
Projects will range based on the needs of the community and may include trail building and maintenance, tree planting, invasive species removal, improving waterways, and maybe some carpentry.
Who are the project partners?
Crews work with a variety of sponsoring agencies including the U.S. Forest Service, The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Vermont Departments of Forest, Parks and Recreation and Fish and Wildlife, and various other local and national non-governmental conservation organizations. These relationships expose crews to a variety of future employment options and allow the opportunity to network with many professionals.
What does VYCC education look like?
Education at VYCC looks different depending on the crew’s interests and will happen out in the field or sometimes back at our Headquarters in Richmond, VT. It tends to be a variety of readings, writing opportunities, and discussions as a crew. Crews also have an opportunity to learn wildlife and plant identification, skill share with fellow Corps Members, and visit with a variety of professionals in the field.
Questions about WOW Crew?