Building the Next Generation of Trail Conservationists

2023 Emerging Leaders’ Summit

On October 6-8, 2023, the Appalachian Trail Conservancy will host the 2023 Emerging Leaders’ Summit at Mohican Outdoor Center in Blairstown, New Jersey. The experience will enable participants to cultivate connections, build community, and learn trail skills. The goals of the summit are to foster:

  • Connection with ATC leaders and summit participants
  • Education about Trail skills and safety
  • Inspiration through reflection and creative expression

Thank you for your interest! Applications are closed for the 2023 Emerging Leaders’ Summit. We hope you will consider attending another ATC event or joining our volunteer community! If you have questions about the Summit or would like to be notified about 2024 plans, please contact

Graphic of young people standing in a field

Agenda Overview

Friday, October 6

3-5 p.m.: Arrive at Mohican Outdoor Center, Blairstown, NJ
Welcome, Introductions, Dinner
Evening Fire, Getting to Know the ATC

Saturday, October 7

Potential skill-based sessions include: Essentials of Trail maintenance, careers in conservation, natural resource monitoring and management, public lands – know the past, change the future
Evening paddle on the pond

Sunday, October 8

Reflections and sharing stories
Express yourself! Supporting Artdoors
Ongoing opportunities and communication
Lunch and wrap-up by 2 p.m.
Additional activities will be offered for the afternoon, with an option to stay until Monday

Monday, October 9 (Optional)

Honoring Indigenous Peoples’ Day
Optional activities to be determined

Criteria for Selection

The ATC is building a diverse group of leaders interested in taking positive action for themselves, their communities, and the Appalachian Trail. The ATC’s commitment to Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (JEDI) aspires to cultivate greater strength and resilience within and beyond the organization as we work to manage and protect the Appalachian Trail and all its special resources and communities.

A diverse cohort of emerging leaders includes those:

  • with outdoor camping experience AND those who have never been camping/hiking
  • aged 18 to 30
  • of different levels of education
  • with strong interest in Appalachian Trail stewardship
  • willing and able to take action on justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion
  • who are passionate about empowering others to make the world and the Appalachian Trail a welcoming place for all

*Priority will be given to those residing in the eastern United States

How to Apply

We welcome creative applications including artistic expressions and videos of your application describing your interest in making the Appalachian Trail, public lands, and the outdoors a welcoming place for all to experience and steward. Apply today for the 2023 Emerging Leaders’ Summit!

2022 Summit Stories

Discover More:
2022 Emerging Leaders’ Summit

Read a blog post about the 2022 summit, held on August 5-7, 2022, in conjunction with A.T. Vista.

2021 Emerging Leaders’ Summit

View recorded sessions and read stories from Summit participants during this entirely virtual event, which took place on August 11-13, 2021.

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