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Out West Student Blog

Highly recognized as a wastewater treatment plant, the Watsonville Recycled Water Facility was developed as one of the ways to combat California’s growing water problem.
The San Clemente Dam used to lie on the Carmel River. However, in 1992, the dam was deemed unsafe due to seismic activity in the area. What followed was, the largest dam removal project to occur in California.
Apr 17 2017 | Out West student blog
The steelhead endangerment declaration and a dam's failed seismic review ushered in a new era for the Carmel River.
"It was absolutely incredible to me how much I had learned," writes Princess Umodu. "Keeping the ballot measures database updated was only the beginning. Work included compiling and double-checking legislation on various topics including voter id and poll watcher requirements, as well as a brief stint in legislative vacancies."
All those humans entering the park in a million cars also remind me that working for the NPS is such a gift, because I get to work for a cause that I truly love. Every day, I am working to protect and share the most wonderful place I’ve ever seen in my entire life—and hopefully inspiring others to protect it as well.
Aug 27 2016 | Out West student blog
I accompanied our neighbors, the Marine Mammal Center, to Point Reyes for a seal release. They released four harbor seals and two elephant seals on a small beach near an elephant seal rookery. It was all over in about five minutes, but still a heart-warming afternoon.
Aug 26 2016 | Out West student blog
The difference between expectations and reality here in LA has got me thinking about the anchoring, centering power than unique places have. While it pains me to see things like mountaintop removal for ecological and social reasons (The people living downstream! The animals!), what gets me even more is the erasure of location.
Aug 26 2016 | Out West student blog
The beauty of Yosemite will most likely dot my dreams for a long time. I’m grateful for the break I found this summer in its waterfalls and boulders, but I’m mostly grateful that I didn’t just appreciate the area. My job at the Yosemite Museum gave me a base of history and culture with which I thought about the area.
Aug 25 2016 | Out West student blog
Even though I had almost no experience with the tools and techniques I’d be using on several of these projects, my coworkers had an incredible amount of trust in my ability, and this allowed me to try so many new things. They gave me a ton of freedom in shaping the direction of these projects, and that seemed pretty rare to me.
Aug 25 2016 | Out West student blog
A naturally quiet speaker with a tendency to mumble, I never would have imagined myself being able to present to crowds about Yellowstone’s history; and yet, just a couple of weeks in, I’m beginning to enjoy sharing my knowledge with people, as well as learning from the stories and anecdotes they have to tell about their experiences here in the Park.

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Recent Center News

Apr 22 2019 | ... & the West Blog, ... & the Best | Stories Recommended by the ‘... & the West’ Blog
David Bernhardt confirmed as Interior Secretary; Judge blocks decision to end coal-mining ban on federal lands; President Trump signed bill endorsing Colorado River Drought Plan; Karuk tribe struggles to defend itself against fire threats; cancer-causing chemical taints Paradise water; Native American demand drives black market for eagle feathers; and more environmental news from around the West this month.
Apr 9 2019 | ... & the Best | Stories Recommended by the ‘... & the West’ Blog
Increased rain and snow force Oroville Spillway into use; health impacts from oil and natural gas extraction; Northern New Mexico trout drop; record-high Mexican gray wolf population in Southwest; and more environmental news from around the West this month.
Apr 2 2019 | ... & the West Blog
In Utah, outdoor recreation is more and more of a booming business. Its impact on the land is still being understood, but there are few limits in sight.