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Youth & Historic Preservation

The Advisory Council on Historic Preservation (ACHP) wants the historic preservation community to expand! Educating young people on the benefits preservation offers to communities and the nation and encouraging them to enjoy history in their own towns is important. The ACHP urges historic preservation organizations to create partnerships with local schools and offer service learning and community service opportunities to students using heritage resources. This website serves as a resource to promote learning, vocational, and other opportunities for youth in historic preservation. Creating greater appreciation and support for historic preservation among youth and growing the preservation ethic is our goal!

Latest News | Engagement | Education | Service Learning | Jobs | Young Professionals in Preservation

Latest News

The ACHP voted unanimously to endorse the Engaging Youth Strategic Plan at the March 24, 2016, business meeting in Tampa, Florida. Read the strategic plan here.

The National Alliance of Preservation Commissions published an article by ACHP Chairman Wayne Donaldson on the importance of getting young people involved in historic preservation and service learning. A great strategy to encourage community involvement, service learning is part of the ACHP's outreach to young audience. Read the article here.

Youth Engagement

The ACHP is reaching out via social media with three Facebook pages: Preservation - The Next Generation for young people, teachers, and others; Preservation Indigenous - Native Youth focused on Native American interests; and ACHP-Advisory Council on Historic Preservation as the agency's page. The ACHP also has a presence on Twitter.

The ACHP is dedicated to building an inclusive historic preservation community. Countless diverse experiences have shaped the country's cultural landscape, and the ACHP has created a resource for all Americans to learn more about opportunities available under the National Historic Preservation Act. Learn more at the agency's inclusiveness page: "Working Together to Build a More Inclusive Preservation Program." Find out how you can get involved in historic preservation in your own community if you want your voice to be heard by reading the ACHPís Citizenís Guide to Section 106.

Educational Opportunities

The ACHP and partner organizations offer many educational opportunities for students of all ages. From lesson plans for secondary students to undergraduate and graduate courses and continuing education, the field of historic preservation has expanded significantly in recent years. This section serves as a resource to collect and showcase learning tools for aspiring preservationists.

The ACHP offers classes throughout the country all year on the Section 106 review process. Learn more about the classes and register here.

The National Park Service (NPS) offers many tools for students and educators, including on-site programs at national parks throughout the country and online lessons plans through Teaching with Historic Places.

As part of the ongoing celebration of the 50th anniversary of the National Historic Preservation Act (NHPA), Preservation50 has collected many educational resources. Visit their website to see lesson plans from the likes of Next Exit History, the Smithsonian, and more, as well as toolkits, resources, and more ways to get involved in preservation education and outreach.

More than ever before, students have the opportunity to develop skills in the preservation field through certificates, associate's, bachelor's and graduate degrees in preservation-related topics. The National Council for Preservation Education serves as a valuable source to research higher educational opportunities offered at schools and universities across the country.

Service Learning & Volunteerism

Service learning and volunteering offer people of all ages ways to get involved in historic preservation. Preserve America is a federal initiative that supports community efforts to preserve and enjoy our priceless cultural and natural heritage. The goals of the program include a greater shared knowledge about the nation's past, strengthened regional identities and local pride, increased local participation in preserving the country's cultural and natural heritage assets, and support for the economic vitality of our communities. Preserve America Stewards celebrates programs in which volunteers make substantial contributions to local preservation efforts; read more about the designated organizations here.

Preserve America Youth Summits offer students hands-on opportunities to engage with historic preservation and interact with local, state, and federal governments as well as many other preservation and community organizations. The summits take place in several locations each summer. Learn more at the Preserve America Youth Summits website.

The National Trust for Historic Preservation offers preservation craft training for young people through HOPE Crews, which help rehabilitate historic sites while learning best practices for preservation. Crews have been formed across the country to work with historic sites.

The National Park Service has collected several service learning opportunities on its website; learn more about programs from across the country here.

Of the Student, By the Student, For the Student is a program offered by the Journey Through Hallowed Ground Partnership, giving students in the National Heritage Area ranging from Gettysburg, PA to Charlottesville, VA the opportunity to learn about historic preservation while creating their own mini-documentaries about historic sites.


There are many ways to obtain a career in the historic preservation field, and not all of them are as straightforward as you might think! Visit the ACHP's series on preservation professionals, "These are the Preservationists in Your Neighborhood," to learn more about preservationists and the sometimes circuitous routes they took to find their jobs.

To learn more about career opportunities and current openings in preservation organizations across the country, visit the National Trust for Historic Preservation's Preservation Job Board or the PreserveNet job board sponsored by Cornell University.

Visit the website of the National Register of Historic Places to learn more about opportunities in the preservation field.

Young Professionals in Preservation

Here is a list of groups of young professionals across the country who have organized to advocate for preservation in their cities and offer networking opportunities.

Young Preservationist Organizations Buffalo's Young Preservationists (Buffalo, NY)

Cincinnati Preservation Collective (Cincinnati, OH)

City Beautiful Cleveland (Cleveland, OH)

Young Ohio Preservationists (Columbus, OH)

Preservation Dallas Young Professionals (Dallas, TX) involved/featured-groups/pdyp/

Pier & Beam (Houston, TX)

Preserve Greater Indy (Indianapolis, IN)

Young Preservationists KC (Kansas City, Missouri)

Young Friends of the Preservation Alliance (Philadelphia, PA)

Young Preservationists Association of Pittsburgh (Pittsburgh, PA)

Young Urban Preservationists (Rochester, NY)

Heritage YP - San Francisco Young Preservationist Network (San Francisco, CA)

Wheeling Young Preservationists (Wheeling, WV)

Updated June 15, 2016

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