Borrego Springs High Schoolers live in the middle of the expansive and highly visited Anza Borrego Desert State Park, and yet virtually none of our 100 high schoolers ever land jobs in the Park during or after high school. We have been woefully understaffed and underfunded, both the school district and the park, to pursue and develop programs that will enable our students to take advantage of the employment opportunities afforded by the Anza Borrego Desert State Park, the largest state park in the nation, and its related organizations.
The National Association for Interpretation (NAI) works with parks all over the world teaching folks the communication skills necessary to serve as Certified Interpretive Hosts and Guides. These job skills are highly desirable for employment in parks, museums, BLM, tourism destinations and the field of hospitality. Last school year, Borrego Springs High School offered for the first time ever in a US high school, an NAI class for 16 Juniors and Seniors complete with CIH and CIG Certificates. This highly successful class was taught by local Park Interpreters.
BSUSD will continue this class for the 20-21 school year. Funds are needed for project expenses such as teaching materials, supplies, test books, test fees, NAI Certification, transportation to various locations in Borrego Springs and books.
The high schoolers who took this class last year grew in self-confidence, knowledge of their surrounding Anza Borrego Desert State Park and in their communication skills. It was rewarding to see our otherwise quiet, reticent and extremely low-income young people find their voice and learn job skills that will benefit them for life whether in the field of geo-tourism, hospitality or any work requiring strong inter-personal/communication skills.
The Project Contact Person, Rotarian Martha Deichler, works as the School Community Liaison and she will be personally involved with the daily operation of the class.