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Kupu issues last call for conservation leaders, host sites

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The Kaua‘i Natural Area Reserve on the Nā Pali coast offers breathtaking views. Photo Courtesy: Kupu

Kupu, Hawai‘i’s leading conservation and environmental education nonprofit, has announced that applications are open for the Conservation Leadership Development Program.

Recent high school graduates, college graduates and young professionals looking to establish a career in conservation are strongly encouraged to apply. Application deadline for individuals as well as host sites is Friday, April 28.

The Conservation Leadership Development Program focuses on developing the next generation of environmental stewards and offers a six-month term, which runs from June 2023 through December 2023; and an 11-month term, which runs from September 2023 through October 2024.


Participants will be matched with a single conservation host site for the duration of the program, during which they will learn and serve alongside conservation experts. Programs are available on Oʻahu, as well as Hawaiʻi Island, Kauaʻi, Maui, Moloka‘i, American Samoa, Guam, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, Rota and Saipan.

This network of partner sites offers exposure to the fields of ornithology, botany, natural and aquatic resource management, biology, marine biology, Hawaiian cultural studies, and more. Participants will receive a monthly living allowance.

Kupu team members smile in the forest of Kalalau on the northwest side of Kaua‘i. Photo Courtesy: Kupu

Upon completion of their service term, participants will also receive an education award and have access to the Kupu Pathways program, which offers college courses through Arizona State University.


Host site applications are open for all Hawaiian Islands as well as American Samoa, Guam, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, Rota and Saipan. Host sites can be nonprofit organizations, for-profit businesses, and State and County government agencies.

This is an ideal program for organizations that are trying to grow and are eager to train emerging professionals. Kupu supports intensively therefore host sites pay only a small
fraction of the true cost of adding to their workforce and growing their industry.

Jonah Kumupono Kim served on Oʻahu with Hiʻipaka LCC at Waimea Valley.


“I learned a lot about growing and caring for plants, made lifelong connections with the people and places I worked with, and worked super hard to mālama our ʻāina,” Kim said.

Host sites and program applicants can apply here.

For questions, contact [email protected] or call 808.735.1221, extension 2002.

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