Learn hands-on about wildlife, habitat management and conservation in an enriching environment from over 20+ wildlife professionals from the PA Game Commission, the PA Fish and Boat Commission, and more,
Hone your leadership and communications skills and
Leave prepared to use these skills to become an ambassador for conservation in your community.
After field school, our dedicated Program and Outreach Coordinator will help you be successful with your community outreach by:
Giving you clear guidelines for how to complete your outreach.
Sending you monthly outreach opportunities only available to Ambassadors.
Being available to answers questions or help you by phone and/or email five days a week.
A testimonial from Eli, WLA youth Participant:
“When I showed up, I found 25 like-minded teenagers who knew just as much if not more than I did. From the minute I walked in the door to the minute I left, everyone was extremely friendly and helpful. I enjoyed every minute of it. Every one of the instructors was very knowledgeable and willing to work with you one-on-one. The schedule was packed full with educational lectures and a fair share of fun. Everything you do at the academy, even the fun stuff has a purpose. Whether it is stacking cans blindfolded and only using words to communicate or marching, all the activities had a purpose. At the end of the week, I felt as if I had spent a week in a school filled to the brim with knowledge of conservation and biology. I won’t lie. It was a tiring experience with wake up at 6:00 a.m and working until 11:00p.m., but in the end, you felt as if you accomplished something.
I don’t think anyone can spend a week at the Academy and not have a deeper sense of gratitude, and wish to protect the natural treasures we have here in America. Attending the Academy has given me a whole new outlook on the history and future of conservation, and what I can do to make sure that the forests and streams I enjoy today will be protected for many years to come. I like the fact that the Wildlife Leadership Academy goes beyond the field school and that you are expected to preform conservation related outreach after you leave the Academy. I think that the outreach is what make WLA standout among all other conservation related camps for teenagers now days.”
A note from a Wildlife Leadership Academy mom:
The Wildlife Leadership Academy has been an exceptional program for Luke. The hands-on learning, presentations and demonstration of leadership has helped him polish these skills.
Seriously, we cannot Thank You enough.
Luke recently presented his graduation project and displayed his Academy published blog paper and received a 100%. The two English teachers and one other teacher told him that his presentation was one of the best over all the years.
Also, thank you so very much for the awesome recommendation letter. Luke will be attending PSU- DuBois in the fall. We are very excited for him.
With much appreciation, Kris B.
HOW TO APPLY
We are looking for highly motivated 14-17 year-old students with an interest in wildlife and/or fisheries conservation and the outdoors. Applicants will be selected based on academic achievements and activities, non-academic achievements and activities, and a personal essay.
The application process begins with filling out an online preliminary application (find link below).
Once you complete the preliminary application, if eligible, you will be invited to submit an essay upon which final acceptance will be decided.
Tuition + Scholarship Support
Tuition Cost is $500 which includes housing and meals. Scholarship support is available at 50% ($250) and 80% ($400) levels. ** If you are requesting scholarship support you will receive a scholarship application during the application process.
The Wildlife Leadership Academy program goes beyond one week, beyond one year – it is an experience that will last you a lifetime.
We are invested in supporting and nurturing your passion for the environment.
We want you to be part of the solution. We want you to become a CONSERVATION AMBASSADOR to ensure a sustained wildlife, fisheries and natural resource legacy for future generations.
We want YOU – an inspired, dedicated leader for conservation – to take your passion to the next level and join our team.
Tuition Cost is $500 which includes housing and meals. Scholarship support is available at 50% ($250) and 80% ($400) levels; you will receive a scholarship application during the application process. If accepted, you are also encouraged to connect with your community to find tuition support.
Our preference is for ages 14-17. However, for 13 year old applicants, if you are competitive and mature, you may be selected to attend field school. We rarely select 18 year old applicants as program expectations are that youth complete community outreach after the field school and most 18 year olds (high school seniors) are likely off to college.
Yes, the field school is 5 days/4 nights. However, the Wildlife Leadership Academy is not just a one week program, if accepted, you are mentored and expected to engage in conservation focused community outreach after the field school. In addition, we aim to support the success of our Academy Alumni from high school to college to career.
The mission of the Wildlife Leadership Academy is to engage and empower high school age youth to become Conservation Ambassadors to ensure a sustained wildlife, fisheries and natural resource legacy for future generations. The Academy, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, is a cooperative initiative involving state agencies and conservation organizations.