Environmental Education Centers and Programs
Smokey greets guests at a DEC Education Center festival
DEC operates two fully staffed Environmental Education Centers offering classes and programs on environmental awareness around New York State. Each center has interpretive trails, exhibit areas, and meeting rooms and offers family events all year round. Classes for students include guided field trips through diverse habitats. Workshops for teachers provide opportunities for professional growth, and internships are available for people interested in pursuing careers in natural history or related fields. Visit our Workshops for Educators page to learn about what programs we offer to educators. Public programs include evening and weekend walks and talks on natural history topics, as well as large festivals.
Dr. Victor Reinstein Woods Preserve (outside of Buffalo, NY) and Five Rivers Environmental Education Center (outside of Albany, NY) are the two centers operated by DEC staff.
There are also three regional environmental education programs that offer professional development for educators, in-class and after-school programs on the environment, and public environmental education programs at fairs and festivals. The regional programs are located in DEC Region 1 - Long Island; DEC Region 2 - New York City; DEC Regions 6, 7, & 8- Western Adirondacks & Central NY.
The Hudson River Estuary Program also has an education and interpretation unit that focuses on Hudson River lessons and exploring the Hudson River Estuary. Their programs can be viewed on the Hudson River Estuary Program Education and Interpretation page.
More about Environmental Education Centers and Programs:
- Environmental Education on Long Island - Environmental education programs offered in NYSDEC's Region 1: Suffolk and Nassau Counties.
- New York City Environmental Education Program - Environmental Education opportunities in the New York City area
- Environmental Education in DEC's Regions 6, 7, and 8 - Opportunities for educator professional development; environmental, conservation, and outdoor education for underserved populations; and working with teachers to create hands-on, nature-based programing for schools in the Lake Ontario, Western Adirondacks, Central New York, and Finger Lakes areas.
- Five Rivers Environmental Education Center - This center offers hands-on classes for students to learn about their surroundings as well as self-guided opportunities throughout its 400+ acres.
- Reinstein Woods Nature Preserve & Environmental Education Center - Located in Western New York, this nature preserve features self-guided trails, a variety of exciting educational programs for all ages, and a brand new environmental education center "green" building.
- Rogers Environmental Education Center - This center's 600 acres offer a variety of habitats for the walker, bird watcher, photographer, snowshoer, or cross-country skier.
- Stony Kill Farm Environmental Education Center - This center operates as a working farm, offers hands-on classes for students to learn about their surroundings, and offers self-guided opportunities throughout its 1000+ acres.
- Naturalist Intern Program - DEC's environmental education centers offer 10- or 12-week internships for people interested in natural history, science education or other related fields.
- AmeriCorps Members in DEC - AmeriCorps positions within DEC: SCA Hudson Valley Program, SCA Adirondacks Program, Headwaters Youth Conservation Corps, and West Seneca Service Action Corps.