Emerging Trail Leader Scholarship Recipient


Seth Young

Inman, North Carolina, United States

My name is Seth Young and I would like to apply for the Hulet Hornbeck Emerging Leaders Scholarship Program to attend the 2017 International Trails Symposium.

My initial introduction to trail work came without much forethought. I needed an internship to graduate college and during my search I came across an opportunity to be a part of the Maine Trail Crew for the summer of 2013. I applied and was accepted without realizing how much it would shape the next few years of my life. I spent that summer, as so many young men and women across the country do, living a simple life of camping and constructing trails. It opened my eyes to how much work really goes into trails and the idea that building sustainable trails is just as much for the ecosystem as it is for hikers. Over the following two years I went on to work on trails for the Montana Conservation Corps as well as the Appalachian Trail Conservancy.

I am currently in an Americorps term of service as the Trails Coordinator for Polk County in North Carolina. I have been able to put my experience building and maintaining trails to use while also learning new skills such as designing trails, planning projects, helping to create and run an after school hiking program, and coordinating volunteers. Although I feel confident in my ability to construct trails, the management and planning side of trails is new to me and I am trying to learn all I can as I pursue a career in trails or outdoor recreation. I would be extremely grateful for the opportunity to hear first hand from people who have spent many years trying to make trails an integral part of happy and healthy communities. . The International Trails Symposium would be a great way for me to learn about the latest techniques in sustainable trails which I can bring with me back to Polk County and hopefully other trails and communities in the future. Thank you for your consideration.

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321 views • posted 12/13/2022