The Oregon Maple Project offers internships for dedicated high school and college students interested in learning the art Bigleaf Maple sugaring and assisting with all aspects of our operations at Camp Colton. This is a unique opportunity for those who love the outdoors, hands-on work, local food, teaching, and community ventures.
We select volunteer interns to collaborate with us for a full year, learning about Bigleaf Maples throughout the seasons. Interns should be prepared to work for one full day per month, often on weekends, and will need to provide their own transportation to our location in Colton, Oregon. Responsibilities will include: tapping trees, chopping wood, setting up sap collection lines, maintaining the sugar shack, harvesting sap, firing the evaporator, cleaning equipment, maintaining trails, hosting visitors, designing outreach efforts, and developing curriculum.
To apply, please send a letter of interest to Eliza. You may also email Eliza with questions about the internship.
As a student at the OSU College of Forestry, I am passionate about working with and around trees. Being able to help tap (pun intended) a somewhat new ecosystem service for us in the Pacific Northwest is really awesome. I believe utilizing a wide variety of ecosystem services helps us maintain more diverse forests and educate a wider array of our communities about the importance of our native forest lands. I gained a love for pure maple syrup from my wife, who has always considered it an important staple for breakfast. Outside of class I enjoy busying myself with many hobbies, including: hiking, woodworking, pickling, jam making, archery, leatherwork, silverwork, blacksmithing, miniature painting, and homebrewing beers, ciders, and meads. Even before I became involved with the Oregon Maple Project, I had begun using maple syrup in my brewing projects. Other than these hobbies, I enjoy playing board games and D&D with my friends, and caring for our two rescue cats Kyst and Ufer.
As I have grown up, I’ve always had a love for the outdoors, fostered by my parents and siblings. After moving to Portland in elementary school and spending many summers in the Northeast, I’ve had the chance to explore both the East and West Coasts through hiking, camping, biking, and backpacking. Since joining the Oregon Maple Project as an intern in May 2021, I’ve learned so much about the unique art of maple sugaring, something I would never experience elsewhere. For me, sugaring has been an exceptional way to connect with the land and forests of the Pacific Northwest. Outside of the Oregon Maple Project and outdoor adventures, I’m a student at Lincoln High School, a climate activist, and a dancer.