The Emerging Trail Leaders Program immerses young leaders in learning best practices and trends in the trails profession to help pave the path to careers in natural resource management.


Hulet Hornbeck at the dedication of the trail that bears his name at Carquinez Strait Regional Shoreline

The Hulet Hornbeck Emerging Leaders Scholarship Program brings Emerging Trail Leaders (young adults, age 21-28) to participate in the International Trails Symposium (ITS). Scholarship recipients will immerse themselves in learning the best practices and trends in the field to help pave the path to careers in natural resource management.

Key points of the Emerging Trail Leaders Program:

  • Engage in discussions with career advisors.
  • Leadership, team building, and professional development activities.
  • A field day highlighting issues and opportunities.
  • Full access to ITS events and educational sessions.
  • A group presentation on the ITS experience in a dedicated concurrent session.
  • Networking with Symposium participants.
  • Involvement in the Symposium exposes young professionals to multi-generational dialogue about conservation and recreation.
  • During past Emerging Trail Leaders programs, established resource professionals benefitted just as much from the exchange as the field looks to foster new leadership.
  • Past scholarship recipients are invited to apply to serve on the planning committee for the next Symposium.

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2019 Emerging Trail Leaders Scholarship Program

Read the latest on the Emerging Trail Leaders Program .

Program History

The Hulet Hornbeck Emerging Leaders Scholarship Program was launched in 2013 as part of the American Trails International Trails Symposium. The program was named in memory of lifelong trail activist Hulet Hornbeck. At the 2013 International Trails Symposium, we provided scholarships to 18 talented young leaders and recently brought 16 talented young adults to the 2015 International Trails Symposium on scholarship.

Read the article written post-Symposium on the scholarship program from a few of the Emerging Trail Leaders in the Fall 2015 issue of the American Trails Magazine.

photo credit: Dean Arnold

photo credit: Marissa Jager


We're actively seeking $2,500 sponsorships to support this amazing program. $2,500 = one scholarship. Won't you please help us out and be recognized for your investment in the next generation of trail and conservation professionals?

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About Hulet Hornbeck

Hulet was a key player in organizing the first National Trails Symposium in 1971, and was a founding board member of the National Trails Council, predecessor to American Trails. He actively served on the Board of Directors for American Trails for over 16 years.

The Emerging Leader Scholarship Program was named in honor of Hulet to inspire young adults to choose a career path so they, too, can leave a lasting legacy on the world – as Hulet did. Learn more about Hulet Hornbeck's life and accomplishments.

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