The Wabanaki Youth in Science (WaYS) program provides mentoring and training opportunities in the life sciences for Native American youth in Maine. This program, which was motivated by a shortage of young natural resource professionals to manage tribal lands, uses a multifaceted approach (i.e., camps, community outreach, and internships with cultural resource and natural resource mentors) to recruit and retain native youth in science fields. A defining characteristic of the program is the integration of knowledge from cultural resource and natural resource mentors. This approach helps students develop an understanding of contemporary natural resource problems informed by their community and culture, leading to greater relevance and persistence in science. Program outcomes include increased participant awareness of and interest in natural resource management and increased enrollment of Wabanaki youth in university science programs.
carr, tish; Kenefic, Laura S.; Ranco, Darren J. 2017. Wabanaki Youth in Science (WaYS): A Tribal Mentoring and Educational Program Integrating Traditional Ecological Knowledge and Western Science. Journal of Forestry. 115(5): 480-483. https://doi.org/10.5849/jof.16-066.