Our education program is multifaceted and takes place in the classroom, on the land, and in partnership with many organizations that are helping to lead the way in natural resource conservation education. We deliver programming, knowledge, and leadership skills to students in South Texas, including underserved communities, benefiting the region now and in the future.
East Foundation partners with the Witte Museum to bring the Land Stewardship Ambassadors (LSA) program to students in Bexar, Cameron, and Webb counties. The program increases awareness of land stewardship principles, promotes civil engagement in today’s youth, and inspires students to obtain careers that support land stewardship. This course is a reading and writing intensive course and through interactive experiences, career exploration, and the study of stewardship students learn how to be a voice for Texas!
Our application is currently open and can be found here.
We select three groups of 15 high school students from Bexar, Cameron, and Webb counties who have an interest in the environment, the outdoors, and developing personal leadership skills. They complete assignments and participate in two-hour sessions each week that explore topics such as the history of conservation, principals of wildlife management, managing our watersheds, human dimensions of land stewardship, the role politics play in natural resource management, the economic engine of natural resource management, and the importance of gender and ethnic diversity within user groups.
At the end of the semester-long program, students give a public presentation about a topic related to land stewardship. Students who successfully complete the 10-session program earn a $400 stipend. Students must participate in seven out of the eight initial sessions, the two overnight sessions, and complete all reading and writing assignments to qualify for the $400 stipend. There is no cost for the student to participate, we provide all materials for the course, in addition transportation, food, and lodging for the overnight trips.
The Land Stewardship Ambassadors program is generously supported by SWBC, the Albert and Margaret Alkek Foundation, and the Wheeler Foundation.
The 15 students chosen from each county will meet in their respective counties: Bexar County cohort meets at the Witte Museum; Cameron County cohort meets at Camp Rio at Historic Lula Sams in Brownsville; and Webb County cohort meets at Falcon Bank in Laredo.
Schedule for Spring 2023
October 15, 2023 - Deadline for LSA Application
October 25 - November 17, 2023 – Semifinalists Interviews
November 20, 2023 – Finalists Notified of Selection
December 10, 2023 - Mandatory Parent and Student Info Session
January 13 – 14, 2024 - Mandatory Overnight at the Witte Museum in San Antonio*
January 21 and 28, 2024
February 4, 11, and 25, 2024
March 3, 17, and 24, 2024
April 6 – 7, 2024 - Mandatory Overnight at the San Antonio Viejo Ranch near Hebbronville*
April 30, 2024 – Final Presentation Deadline
Graduation Date - TBD
*Transportation and meals are provided at these sessions.
- Students must be freshman, sophomores, juniors, or seniors in high school.
- Students should have an interest in the environment, outdoors, and in developing personal leadership skills.
- Student must be able to commit to participating in the full course.
Masi Mejia – email@example.com
"I truly believed this program benefited all of us who attended and stuck through with it, I found out information that I never would have even thought of in the first place. The environment and people were so welcoming and inviting and the discussions really opened your eyes on different perspectives you might not have hear of. A truly amazing experience I recommend to all."
"As a land steward I gained much knowledge on how to advocate for wildlife conservation, whether it be from land to sea, by animal or by tree. In addition, I received many experiences; amidst the many was when we visited a ranch so vast, then sat by the camp fire at night under stars so bright. To conclude, it was a phenomenal program that brought the best of me by providing the best of education, friends, and field experience."
"As a land steward we all hold our own land ethic which we should nurture and in essence help grow. My land ethic is that we share a symbiotic relationship with our environment, therefore we must provide for it and all its organisms the same way they provide for us."