In 2006, the Boston Youth Environmental Network (BYEN) was created to facilitate linking Boston Public School (BPS) students with hands-on science learning opportunities during and after school. Today BYEN is successfully building a pathway for Boston’s youth from kindergarten through high school of formal and informal environmental education experiences, and relevant, hands-on employment opportunities.
To date, nearly 150 public and private sector environmental education providers participate in the network. From start-ups to well-established leaders in the field, each organization sees the value of being part of a larger network, a network that elevates the conversation taking place between organization staff and BPS school teachers and educators during the school year, and facilitates the meaningful employment of teenagers in green jobs during the summer months. By convening a broad spectrum of stakeholders, connecting them to each other in service to our urban youth, sustaining these connections through comprehensive programs that leverage individual organizational strengths, and consistently measuring and evaluating program impacts, BYEN is transforming the way that the City’s children in grades K-12 experience hands-on science and environmental education and related employment opportunities.
Boston Youth Environmental Network (BYEN) is a comprehensive system of organizations providing hands-on environmental education and employment opportunities for children and youth. Our resources and connections help individual providers more effectively engage kids in outdoor learning, academic achievement and career exploration.
All young people in Boston are engaged in high quality, culturally relevant environmental education and employment experiences that provide opportunities for outdoor learning, academic achievement and career exploration.
To align existing programs and create new models of partnership to form a pathway from kindergarten through high school of formal and informal environmental education experiences, and relevant, hands-on employment opportunities.
Theory of Change:
An equitably distributed and networked system of services, grounded in youth development principles, will provide a clear, accessible pathway of education and employment opportunities from childhood to early adulthood.
Program areas along the pathway on which we focus include:
BYEN achieves its mission by:
Convening: for engaged leadership and a common vision
Connecting: to coordinate training, align services, increase capacity
Sustaining: to develop resources and public awareness
Measuring and evaluating: for quality and impact
BYEN is an initiative of Boston After School & Beyond.
BYEN Steering Committee Members
Pam Hess – Appalachian Mountain Club
Kate Anderson – Beyond Benign
Josh Bruno – Boston Private Industry Council
Beverly Nadeau – Boston Public Schools Science Department
Myrna Johnson – Boston Schoolyard Initiative
Dan Gelbtuch – Dorchester Bay Youth Force
Ros Everdell – Dudley Street Neighborhood Initiative
Eric Arnold – Hale Reservation
Daisy Ortega – Health Resources in Action
Ruth Goldman – Boston Park Advocates
John Zuman – INCRE
Jean Dorcus – Mass Audubon’s Boston Nature Center
Rebekah Stendahl- New England Aquarium
Kent Jackson – Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy Greenway Conservancy
Alex Chu – Thompson Island Outward Bound Education Center
Bob Chen – University of Massachusetts Boston
Kristen Conroy – US Environmental Protection Agency
Jessie Scott – US Forest Service Urban Connections
Aaron Tavares – Youth Options Unlimited Boston
Jen Gresham – Zoo New England