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KECA’s Educational Opportunities

The Elk Country Visitor Center is an educational facility which advocates for the conservation of natural resources, with an emphasis on elk and elk habitat in the Pennsylvania Wilds and is operated by the Keystone Elk Country Alliance, a non-profit, 501©(3) wildlife conservation organization. The center’s conservation education staff hosts school groups of all ages, as well as public youth and adult groups, and civic organizations, providing quality educational programs on elk and other wildlife, the natural history of the region, and conservation in general.

Our educational programs are not only age-appropriate and cross-curricular, but are aligned with current Pennsylvania State Education Standards. Teachers and groups may opt to select the specific program topics and activities which best fulfill their classroom curriculum needs or scout merit badge requirements. We have had the pleasure of reaching over 49,500 individuals with our educational programs, and have assisted over 166,000 visitors with their elk and wildlife questions.

New Conservation Education Scholarship Available for High School Seniors!

Benezette, PA – Students who reside in Pennsylvania who are currently in their senior year of high school will have the opportunity to earn a $1,000 scholarship provided by the Keystone Elk Country Alliance and Seneca Resources Company, LLC. The amount of $1,000 is awarded once to the scholarship recipient. In order to be eligible for this educational scholarship, students must be accepted to attend a college or secondary vocational/trade school. They must also be majoring in or pursuing a career in an environmental field, including but not limited to: Environmental Science, Biology, Chemistry, Geography, Geology, Earth Science, Education, Environmental Engineering, Forestry, Botany, Wildlife and Fisheries Science, Sustainability, Parks and Recreation.

Applicants are required to submit a portfolio that includes:

– A typed essay (300-500 words) written in paragraph format about personal experiences and accomplishments in their lives that have inspired them to pursue the environmental field of studies, attributes they possess that will benefit them to be successful working in the environmental field, and the importance of this field of study to our future. Include a cover page with name, address, phone number, and high school attended.
-A letter of recommendation from the applicant’s former or current high school teacher.
-A copy of the letter of acceptance from the college/secondary education school that will be attended by the applicant.

This student portfolio should be submitted electronically to the Keystone Elk Country Alliance Education Department at KECAConEd@windstream.net

The recipient of this scholarship will be chosen by a panel consisting of KECA staff, KECA educational committee members as well as representatives from Seneca Resources Company, LLC.

Applications will be due by June 30th and the recipient will be selected by August 1st.

Ben Porkolab, KECA (Keystone Elk Country Alliance) Conservation Education Coordinator adds, “Seneca Resources Company, LLC. has been a significant partner of KECA and key supporter of our conservation education department for many years. With monies from both the Keystone Elk Country Alliance and Seneca Resources Company, LLC. this scholarship will be awarded to a deserving Pennsylvania high school senior each and every year. Students who pursue careers in conservation are passionate about the well-being of our natural world. KECA believes in supporting those who embrace conservation and the enhancement of Pa.’s elk country for future generations.”
KECA is a 501©(3) non-profit Conservation Organization headquartered at the Elk Country Visitor Center in Benezette, PA. More information can be found at ExperienceElkCountry.com

Seneca Resources Company, LLC explores for and develops natural gas and oil reserves in California and Appalachia, including the Marcellus and Utica shales, and has provided Pennsylvania energy and jobs for more than 100 years. Additional information about Seneca Resources is available at www.nationalfuelgas.com/seneca