Summer Youth Practicum

The Summer Youth Practicum (SYP) is designed to provide Native American students (incoming 10th – 12th grade) an opportunity to gain hands-on and in-lecture experience in the interdisciplinary components of natural resource management and Indigenous knowledge. One of the goals of the NAFWS is to educate Native American youth to understand the importance of professional natural resource management and the interconnectedness to culture, as well encourage them to continue their education and pursue careers in the natural resource fields.

2024 Southwest Region Summer Youth Practicum


Download 2024 Southwest Regional SYP Application Packet


Download SW SYP Flier - PNG Version
Download SW SYP Flier - PDF Version


Flight Guide

Frequently Asked Questions & Answers: Southwest Region SYP

If the student is graduating from 12th grade in May/Spring 2024, are they eligible to apply? 

  • If the graduating senior is still under the age of 18 by July 21, 2024, yes they can apply.
  • If the graduating senior (May/Spring 2024) is 18 years old or older before July 21, 2024, they are not eligible.

Tribally enrolled students are eligible to apply, how about descendants? 

  • Yes, student’s that are descendants may apply. In addition, we recommend/suggest that if students are descendants and want to ever claim “Indian Preference” on future college scholarships, jobs, completing the BIA Form 4432 is necessary and would be helpful. The BIA Form 4432 requires certain signatures, so ensure that allocate adequate time to complete.

How are students selected to attend the Southwest SYP? 

  • Student applications are reviewed by the SW SYP review committee. Reviewing applications take time due to carefully assessing student’s creative submissions and to ensure that all prompts are addressed.

What travel is covered for the student attending the Southwest SYP?  

  • We cover the student’s airfare from their home to Albuquerque or Santa Fe, NM airports. We provide food and lodging for the duration of the program.

Do you fund a chaperone’s travel to travel and attend with the student?

  • Currently, we do not.
  • For student’s flying for the first time, we encourage parents/guardians to walk them through the airport process, review the Flight Guide together, and if possible, take the student to the airport prior to travel to walk them through how the airport process works/flows.
    • If a parent/guardian is interested and concerned about their students safety through the airport, at the time of 2024 Southwest SYP acceptance and travel arrangements, we will purchase the gateway pass through the airline so that parent/guardian can walk with their student to their airline gate.

Do you have applications to be a chaperone for the Southwest SYP?

  • No, we do not have applications for chaperones or mentors, we utilize NAFWS staff, interns, members and partners to serve as chaperones for the Southwest SYP.

What airport do the student’s fly into?

Student’s fly into Albuquerque International Sunport or Santa Fe Regional Airport in New Mexicdo, where they will meet with NAFWS staff to be picked up and transported to the Collins Lake Ranch, Mora, NM.

What if we (parent/guardian) want to drive our student to the Collins Lake Ranch to drop off  before the program and pick up after the program?

You can decide to drive to the Colins Lake Ranch to drop off your student, and pick up your student; however, we will have to do a price comparison for the travel costs, to abide by our NAFWS Travel Policy. This means that if driving costs more than a roundtrip airfare, the NAFWS will cover the roundtrip airfare costs. In other words, the NAFWS will cover the most cost-efficient mode of travel.

I have two students that want to attend together, do they submit 1 application or would they both need to submit an application?

There should be 1 application submitted per student, even if the student’s are siblings. Also, note that there is no guarantee that students that want to or plan to attend as a group or together, will all be accepted. This allows space and diversity for other student’s who may be applying on their own.

More information about our Scholarships & Internships

 If you are interested or would like to share this opportunity, please click for the application by clicking the link below.

In Recognition of Their Support

The Native American Fish and Wildlife Society would like to thank those organizations that provided us with support over the years. With them we grew an effective national communications network for the exchange of information and management techniques related to self-determined tribal fish and wildlife management.

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