Youth Leadership - Header
Amber Benally

Springs - What we do (header)

What we do

Rising Leaders Program - what we do (text)

A high school student holds several ears of corn during a trip to a farm.

Place-based learning

We take students to the state capitol, local farms, forests, and desert lands. Young leaders come away from these experiences with a deep understanding of issues facing public and tribal lands.

A student speaks at the Capitol.

Leadership training

From lobbying strategies to science communication, we pair advocacy training with opportunities for students to practice their new skills. Our leadership program gives rising leaders tools to effect change.

Mentorship opportunities

Career development

Each year, interns dive into the Trust's work, set their own professional goals, develop skills, and study issues related to public and tribal lands, all the while receiving a competitive living wage. 

RLP - who we serve

Who we serve

We prioritize diversity in the groups of young people with which we work, emphasizing Indigenous communities of the Colorado Plateau. We work closely with local high schools, Diné College, Northern Arizona University, and Fort Lewis College to help grow the next generation of conservation and environmental justice leaders.

RLP - LeaderShift

RLP - LeaderShift
Ed Moss


Calling all 18-27-year-olds! Each summer, we host a free training program for young environmental justice leaders. Created by and for young people, LeaderShift connects young advocates with environmental and social justice issues on the Colorado Plateau.

Learn about Leadershift

RLP - Email list

Curious about opportunities for young people on the Colorado Plateau?

RLP - Trust internships

RLP - Trust internships

Grand Canyon Trust internships

Jump start your advocacy career with a paid 12-week internship. Forget about making copies. You'll dive into fieldwork, community organizing, research, and more. Interns and fellows learn how to become movement leaders, work alongside Trust staff, and partner with local communities. 

Internship applications typically open in February.

Be the first to know

RLP - field trips

RLP - field trips
Amber Benally

Place-based learning

Whether we're collecting data for climate change research or helping Native farmers dig out irrigation ditches, our student volunteers put their minds and backs into the work. We meet with traditional knowledge holders, entrepreneurs, scientists, and our own program staff to learn about and support projects across the plateau. Learn more about our work with local farmers ›

RLP - Advisory Council

RLP - Advisory Council

Young voices guide our work

The Rising Leaders Program is ever evolving. Our goal is to create curriculum and opportunities that reflect the needs of young people across the Colorado Plateau. The Rising Leaders Advisory Council gives us feedback and guidance, which we implement into the projects and programs we offer.

Rising Leaders - mission

We believe in the collective power of young people to enact change on the Colorado Plateau. The Rising Leaders Program supports young people by facilitating opportunities to expand their skills and actualize their leadership potential within the environmental justice movement.

Read what young leaders are doing


Looking to launch your career in conservation, advocacy, or environmental justice? Come work for the Grand Canyon Trust.

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We're preparing young Indigenous leaders to invest in their communities through internships, leadership training programs, river trips, and more.

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Rising leaders draft an action plan for a healthy and just future on the Colorado Plateau.

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