New York's Great Lakes: Ecosystem Education Exchange

Subtopics on this page: OrganizationsEnvironmental Education InstitutionsEnvironmental Career Opportunities | Organizations

Environmental Organizations in New York's Great Lakes Basin  back to top

Alliance for the Great Lakes (Buffalo) 
The Alliance is the oldest Great Lakes organization devoted 100 percent to the lakes. Our professional staff works with scientists, policymakers, businesses, community groups and everyday citizens to protect and restore the world's largest surface freshwater resource.

American Water Resources Association
The mission of American Water Resources Association is to advance multidisciplinary water resources education, management and research.

Beaver Meadow Audubon Center; Basin Bin Host  
Beaver Meadow is a 324-acre nature preserve in North Java, NY. The preserve features its namesake beaver meadow with its associated ponds, glacial kettle ponds, wetlands with a boardwalk trail, wooded uplands, meadows, a hawk watch, an arboretum, and eight miles of marked and groomed trails.

Buffalo Niagara Riverkeeper’s “River Academy”

Buffalo Niagara Riverkeeper’s River Academy is a field based training series that provides an introduction to the Niagara River watershed through Saturday morning classes in stream science.  River Academy features Riverkeeper staff and local experts sharing their knowledge of Niagara River hydrology, ecology, contamination and cleanup, land use impacts, restoration project design, green infrastructure solutions, watershed planning, green production and many current issues affecting the watershed. 

Clark Reservation State Park; Basin Bin Host  
Clark Reservation State Park is a geologic wonder of the last ice age and a botanist's paradise. The park's natural features include rugged cliffs and rocky outcrops, woodland and meadow, a wetland and a glacial plunge basin lake in which the surface waters and bottom waters do not mix. Fishermen can catch pickerel, bullheads and sunfish; while birdwatchers may observe cedar waxwings, kingfishers and woodpeckers. 

Environmental Association for Great Lakes Education
The Environmental Association for Great Lakes Education is an organization empowering local communities to protect the Great Lakes Ecosystem. 

Finger Lakes Institute; Basin Bin Host 
Finger Lakes Institute is dedicated to the promotion of environmental research and education about the Finger Lakes and surrounding environments. In collaboration with regional environmental partners and state and local government offices, the Institute fosters environmentally-sound development practices throughout the region, and disseminates accumulated knowledge to the public.

Fish and Wildlife Service New York Office
The Ecological Services function of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) is responsible for the conservation and restoration of fish and wildlife habitat, especially wetland habitat. Field office biologists investigate the effects of contaminants and the measures and costs of contaminant clean-up, help recover threatened and endangered species, review proposals for wetland alterations from construction, and recommend measures to enhance fish and wildlife resources in conjunction with the licensing of power facilities and other Federal projects such as shoreline protection, storm flooding, etc.

Hansen Nature Center; Basin Bin Host
In 1994, Henry Hansen made possible the purchase of a log cabin building which became the Hansen Nature Center. In 1998, he provided funds for an addition which more than doubled the Nature Center’s size.  The nature center features displays on the natural history of New York and offers classes year round.

Iroquois National Wildlife Refuge; Basin Bin Host 
The refuge has 4 nature trails - Kanyoo, Onondaga, Swallow Hollow and Feeder Road - open for walking. Kanyoo and Swallow Hollow Nature Trails also have interpretive panels. There are 4 vehicle overlooks - Cayuga, Ring Neck, School House Marsh and Mallard - where wildlife viewing can be conducted from your vehicle. Cayuga Overlook is a great place to see nesting bald eagles, as well as, tremendous numbers of waterfowl during the spring migration.

Lake Erie State Park; Basin Bin Host 
High bluffs overlooking Lake Erie provide a breathtaking view for the visitor to Lake Erie State Park. Lake Erie features a shoreline covering over three quarters of a mile bordering the shallowest of the Great Lakes. Camping in campsites or cabins are offered at this park, day users can enjoy the picnic areas with shelters, playgrounds and hiking trails that are available to the cross-country skiers during the winter months. Lake Erie State Park is recognized as an excellent place for locating rare migratory birds following the lakes edge. Swimming available on scheduled days and times

Montezuma Audubon Center; Basin Bin Host 
The Montezuma Audubon Center (MAC) is a state-owned facility operated through a cooperative agreement between the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC) and the National Audubon Society.  Managed by Audubon New York, the MAC houses a large exhibit area, classroom, nature store, office area, auditorium, and a meeting room. On its 198 acres, there are five different types of habitat, two restored freshwater marshes, two-miles of hiking trails, and an all-access observation platform.

National Association of Geoscience Teachers
The National Association of Geoscience Teachers’ mission is to improve geoscience education, to emphasize the relevance and cultural significance of the earth sciences, and to disseminate knowledge to educators and the general public.

Nature Up North 
Nature Up North is a community-based organization based at St. Lawrence University whose mission is to foster a deeper sense of appreciation for, and connection to, the North Country environment and in doing so to create a bioregionally literate community that is committed to protecting the wild things and wild places.

New York Master Watershed Steward Program- Cornell Cooperative Extension
The NY Master Watershed Steward (MWS) program empowers watershed professionals and volunteers to be leaders in their communities and to promote healthy watersheds through increased awareness, understanding, and knowledge about the function of watersheds, potential impairments, and watershed protection strategies. Master Watershed Stewards can help reduce the negative impacts of land-use practices and pollutants while planning effectively for the future of New York State’s watersheds.

New York Sea Grant
New York Sea Grant, one of the largest of the state Sea Grant programs, is a cooperative program of the State University of New York and Cornell University, with administrative offices at Stony Brook University, extension administration at Cornell University in Ithaca, and extension specialists located in Stony Brook, Kingston, Oswego, Newark, Buffalo and New York City.   Since 1971, NYSG has represented a statewide network of integrated research, education and extension services promoting coastal community economic vitality, environmental sustainability and citizen awareness and understanding about the State’s marine and Great Lakes resources.
New York State Outdoor Educator's Association
NYSOEA is a professional organization that promotes interdisciplinary life-long learning in, for, and about the outdoors and seeks to inspire appreciation of the environment by all people

New York State STEM Education Collaborative 
Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics Education refers to utilizing the NYS MST Standards in the teaching and learning of the Science, Technology Education, Engineering and Math (STEM) disciplines, in an innovative, integrated, collaborative, and applied fashion to a level of challenge sufficient for college and/or career readiness.

New York State STEM Hubs: Central New York STEM HUB
The Central New York Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics Education Hub, a regional branch of the Empire State STEM Learning Network, strives to design and incubate educational models of excellence empowering all PK-20 students to excel in a rapidly changing world.

New York State STEM Hubs: Finger Lakes STEM Hub
The Finger Lakes Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics Education Hub is a catalyst for collaboration among business, education, community organizations, government entities and passionate individuals leveraging diverse resources together to advance the interdisciplinary teaching and learning of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) disciplines for sustained economic vitality in the nine- county Finger Lakes Region.

New York State STEM Hubs: Western New York  STEM HUB

Western New York Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics Education creates awareness and partnerships that serve students, teachers and parents in accessing STEM/STEAM learning and careers. This is achieved by providing events, experiences and resources through collaboration of the extensive network of cross-sector members and partners. Students engaged in STEM/STEAM learning will have the skills and dispositions to succeed in college and career and will contribute to an economically and intellectually vibrant region.

New York State Department of Environmental Conservation; Education

The Bureau of Environmental Education's goal is to promote wise stewardship of our natural resources. Because educators play a critical role in guiding our youth, training and providing resources to those educators is very important.

New York State Department of Environmental Conservation; Conservationist for kids
The nature and environment magazine for kids in New York State. Every issue contains information and activities about New York State's environment, and ways to explore outside.

New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and historic Preservation
The mission of the NYS Office of Parks, Recreation and historic Preservation is to provide safe and enjoyable recreational and interpretive for all of New York State residents and visitors and to be responsible stewards of valuable natural historic and cultural resources. New York's 180 state parks offer countless opportunities to explore your natural environment, escape from the grind of the everyday and experience exciting new adventures. Including beaches, boat launches, hiking trails, campsites, and golf courses.

Niagara Falls State Park; Basin Bin Host 
With awe-inspiring scenery year-round, thrilling attractions, interactive exhibits, miles of hiking trails, and delectable dining options in a family-friendly environment, Niagara Falls State Park is an adventure-packed experience! No passport is needed to experience an unforgettable and breathtaking Niagara Falls vacation.

Oswego County Soil and Water Conservation District Office; Basin Bin Host
The Oswego County Soil and Water Conservation District objective is to carry out a program of soil, water, and related natural resource conservation, by providing technical assistance and programs to residents, landowners, and units of government. The Oswego County office offers a wide variety of programs for Oswego County residents.

Reinstein Woods Nature Preserve; Basin Bin Host
Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center is located at the Dr. Victor Reinstein Woods Nature Preserve - a unique 292-acre complex of forests, ponds, and wetlands surrounded by suburban development. Reinstein Woods offers a variety of opportunities to explore and learn about nature for families and people of all ages. In addition to free guided tours of the woods, DEC offers a variety of special programs each month, including snowshoe and ski adventures, walks on seasonal topics, and a fall nature festival.

Save The River (Clayton, NY); Basin Bin Host
Founded in 1978, Save The River is a member-based organization representing over 4,500 individuals, followers and families who live, work and play along the St. Lawrence River. Our mission is to protect the St. Lawrence River through advocacy, education and research. Save the river staff can visit your classroom and discuss their efforts to protect the waters of the St. Lawrence River.

Seneca Park Zoo; Basin Bin Host 
Seneca Park Zoo inspires our community to connect, care for, and conserve wildlife and wild places. Situated on 15.5 acres along the Genesee River, the Zoo is a gem among Greater Rochester’s family attractions. Seneca Park Zoo’s vision is to be a national leader in education and conservation action for species survival.

The Nature Conservancy, Central and Western New York Chapter; Basin Bin Host 
The mission of The Nature Conservancy is to conserve the lands and waters on which all life depends. The vision is a world where the diversity of life thrives, and people act to conserve nature for its own sake and its ability to fulfill our needs and enrich our lives. The Central & Western New York chapter staff are responsible for the protection and restoration of more than half of the Empire State.

Tifft Nature Preserve
; Basin Bin Host 
Tifft Nature Preserve is a 264-acre nature refuge dedicated to conservation and environmental education. The Preserve was created in 1972 from land purchased by the City of Buffalo for a landfill site. Concerned citizens recognized the ecological importance of the site and convinced the city legislators to plan for the area’s preservation. The completed landfill incorporated many safety measures, allowing the land to have a new purpose, a nature preserve which opened in 1976.

Tug Hill Tomorrow Land Trust 

Mission is to protect the wildlands, working forests and farms of the Tug Hill region and surrounding areas, and to promote appreciation of the region’s natural and cultural heritage, for present and future generations. Visit the site to learn about preserves, volunteer opportunities, or ask a staff member to speak to your class.

US Forest Service Northeast 
The Northeastern Area State and Private Forestry collaborates with States, other Federal agencies, tribes, landowners, and other partners to protect, conserve, and manage forests and community trees across the 20 Northeastern and Midwestern States and the District of Columbia. The Northeastern Area State and Private Forestry provide leadership, technical support, sound science, and financial assistance to help ensure that our forests and trees continue to provide clean water, forest products, wildlife habitat, recreation, and other benefits for present and future generations.

Water Education Collaborative, Monroe County - H2O Hero
The Water Education Collaborative (WEC) is a coalition of organizations that work together to increase water quality education in the community. The purpose of the Collaborative is to educate people about local water quality issues and inspire them to help protect and improve water quality in the lakes and streams of the Genesee Regional Watershed of Lake Ontario. In 2007, the Water Education Collaborative set out to develop an awareness campaign that would educate the residents of the Genesee Regional Watershed of Lake Ontario about the enormous impact they can have on the water quality in our area.

Wellesley Island State Park; Basin Bin Host 
Wellesley Island State Park has the largest camping complex in the Thousand Islands region. Within this rustic paradise, fishing is excellent--particularly for smallmouth bass, pike, and muskie. To accommodate boaters, the park has a full service marina and three boat launches. A sandy beach on the river offers great swimming and sunbathing and there is a Camp Store, Laundromat, Arcade and the 9-hole Wellesley Island State Park Golf Course on the Island.

Alliance for the Great Lakes 
Looking for a job that rewards your passion for the Great Lakes? Check here regularly to see postings for full- and part-time positions and internships. The Alliance is an equal opportunity employer with offices in Chicago, Detroit, Milwaukee, Cleveland, Buffalo, N.Y., and Grand Haven, Michigan.


Career Choices
This tool is designed to give you an idea of what others in your chosen profession earn in a particular location. Career Choices provides information on potential earnings for entry level through higher paid positions in most U.S. cities. The tool also provides links to information on similar careers, along with informative videos detailing "a day in the life" of your chosen profession.

Conservation Job Board

Cornell University and Cornell Cooperative Extension Employment 
Cornell University is one of the largest and most diverse institutions in the Ivy League. We are a community of 22,000 students and more than 10,000 faculty and staff members representing more than 80 countries and hundreds of disciplines—global cultures, backgrounds, experiences, perspectives, and ideas. CCE employment opportunities are available throughout New York State and on the Cornell University campus in Ithaca, New York.

DEC On the Front Lines
“On The Front Lines” creates episodes featuring NYSDEC employees and all the unique work they do across New York State. This first episodes feature the Dam Safety Section, Air Resources, DEC Spills Engineers and DEC Forest Health Scientists.

Environmental Career Opportunities
Environmental job vacancies from all sectors of the job-market including non-profits, corporations, professional firms, institutions, and Federal, state and local governments.

Excelsior Conservation Corps AmeriCorps
The Excelsior Conservation Corps AmeriCorps builds upon the legacy of President Franklin Roosevelt’s Civilian Conservation Corps, providing 50 young men and women the opportunity to serve together as they restore, protect and enhance New York's natural resources and recreational opportunities that are the backbone of the state's outdoor experience.

Great Lakes Information Network 
The Great Lakes Information Network (GLIN) is a partnership that provides one place online for people to find information relating to the binational Great Lakes-St. Lawrence region of North America. GLIN offers a wealth of data and information about the region's environment, economy, tourism, education and more.

Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory - NOAA
A trusted scientific enterprise to advance observation, modeling, understanding, and prediction of the Great Lakes and coasts to sustain resilient ecosystems, communities, and economies. Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory conducts scientific research on the Great Lakes and coastal ecosystems; develop and transition products and services; and share knowledge and information to advance science, service and stewardship.

The Nature Conservancy

New York Green Jobs
This is a listing of resources to assist job seekers in New York (NY) who are looking for jobs or careers that focus on social or environmental responsibility.

New York Sea Grant Employment
New York Sea Grant, one of the largest of the state Sea Grant programs, is a cooperative program of the State University of New York and Cornell University, with administrative offices at Stony Brook University, extension administration at Cornell University in Ithaca, and extension specialists located in Stony Brook, Kingston, Oswego, Newark, Buffalo and New York City. Since 1971, NYSG has represented a statewide network of integrated research, education and extension services promoting coastal community economic vitality, environmental sustainability and citizen awareness and understanding about the State’s marine and Great Lakes resources.

New York State Department of Environmental Conservation Employment
There are many careers available in the environmental field, and DEC offers exciting opportunities for qualified individuals looking to make a difference in environmental protection and natural resource management. This is your gateway page to explore the options available to you to join our workforce and share in the satisfaction of making a positive impact on our environment. Some example careers include Environmental Engineers, Geologists, Fish and Wildlife technicians and managers, environmental law enforcement, and program administrators.

New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and historic Preservation Employment
The mission of the NYS Office of Parks, Recreation and historic Preservation is to provide safe and enjoyable recreational and interpretive for all of New York State residents and visitors and to be responsible stewards of valuable natural historic and cultural resources. Here at New York State Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation we need a variety of skills to maintain and operate our facilities and to provide patrons with a safe and enjoyable experience. From specialists in historic preservation to skilled trade workers to park maintenance staff, we seek out the brightest and most enthusiastic applicants to join our team. The Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation (OPRHP) employs just over 1,700 year-round permanent employees and more than 4,000 seasonal staff at the peak of our operating season.

NYSCA Parks Corps

PCO Exam

So you want to be a Conservation Officer/Fish and Game Warden
This short video highlights the day-to-day activities you might expect to encounter when you are a Conservation Officer / Fish and Game Warden.

Texas A&M Fisheries and Wildlife Job Board

USA Jobs

Work for NYS Department of Environmental Conservation as an Environmental Engineer
Do you have a bachelor's degree in engineering? You may qualify for the environmental engineer civil service title. No test necessary; based on education and experience. Learn more here.

Scholarship Opportunities in New York's Great Lakes Basin back to top

International Association for Great Lakes Research scholarship
The IAGLR Scholarship is awarded annually to promising Ph.D. students whose dissertation research is likely to make a significant contribution to the understanding of large lakes. The award consists of a U.S. $2,000 scholarship and a one-year membership in IAGLR.

Great Lakes Commission Scholarships and Fellowships

Great Lakes National Scholarship 
Great Lakes Educational Loan Services, Inc. offers scholarship awards—in 2016 totaling more than $2 million—to help new and continuing students in qualifying STEM majors complete their programs. Applications are typically accepted from February until April, or until they receive 20,000 applications—whichever comes first. Award recipients receive a notification email in July.

New York Water Environment Association Scholarships

The New York Water Environment Association offered a total of twelve $2,500 scholarships and two major scholarships ($10,000 and $5,000) in 2017. A total of $45,000 in scholarships. 

N. G. Kaul Memorial Scholarship 
The N. G. Kaul Memorial Scholarship Fund will be offering up to $5000 in scholarships to students pursuing graduate or doctoral degrees in environmental/civil engineering or environmental science concentrating on water quality who show a commitment to government service.

SUNY Scholarships
SUNY is committed to recognizing and rewarding student excellence, which is why we offer a variety of scholarships across our 64 campuses.  Some of these awards are for academic excellence, while others recognize extraordinary artistic or athletic talent.  In addition, others take into account special talents, leadership, community service, specific majors, and financial need.   

New York Scholarships
If you are looking for New York scholarships, or any other prospective scholarship opportunities for that matter, you don’t have to look far. By conducting a free college scholarship search at, you can have access to information about more than 2.7 million scholarships and grants.

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This website was developed with funding from the Environmental Protection Fund, in support of the Ocean and Great Lakes Ecosystem Conservation Act of 2006. 

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