Wisdom of the Elders is developing a summer field science camp focused on environmental and climate change issues, and career pathway planning in STEM fields. The Wisdom Project is a youth leadership initiative for Native and low-income youth in the greater Portland area. Integrating best practices of k-12 curricula from EPA, NASA, NOAA and Portland’s Climate Action Plan, aligning to NGSS (Next Generation Science Standards), and introducing Traditional Ecological Knowledge (TEK) into the lessons to promote student social and physical well-being, thereby strengthening resilience and cultural identity in highlighting Native Americans as America’s “First Scientists”.
Wisdom of the Elders is recruiting 2 – 4 Native American youth to serve as mentors for The Wisdom Project. This Native American youth leadership initiative is designed to engage Native youth in environmental and climate studies through service learning so they can learn about their local ecosystem, consider higher education and careers in STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) fields, and serve as peer mentors to middle school youth. Peer mentors will assist a small team of Native youth during our one-month Summer Field Science Camp being held in Portland in July 2014.
Partners include Native American Youth and Family Center, Northwest Indian College, Portland Community Media TV, Portland State University Graduate School of Education, Ecotrust, United Nations University’s Regional Center of Expertise, and Wisdom of the Elders. Funding for The Wisdom Project has been provided by The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, National Endowment for the Arts, . Hood Cable Regulatory Commission, Multnomah Soil and Water Conservation District, Portland Watershed Stewardship Program, Gray Family Foundation and Black United Fund.