Older workers caring for environment, resources

The Senior Environmental Employment Program, also known as SEE, assists the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and other federal, state and local agencies in meeting their environmental mandates by using the talents and experience of workers 55 years of age and older.

In the 1970s, farsighted EPA staff recognized that experienced workers age 55 and older were extremely underrated. As a result, the EPA created the concept of what was to become a national showcase for the skills of mid-career and older professionals who are now acknowledged as major players in a rapidly aging society.

Enrollees increase their technical skills, access new training opportunities, and take on meaningful tasks to contribute to the environment and to their own financial well-being.  The SEE program links federal, state, and local agencies with professionals 55 and older in administrative and support positions that range from clerical to scientific and field positions.

The National Asian Pacific Center on Aging (NAPCA) manages the SEE program in 11 states, with enrollees providing 339,207 hours of support this year to protect our environment. In Alaska, NAPCA has been matching seasoned professionals with government agencies in various administrative, compliance, outreach and scientific positions since 1994.

One of our current SEE enrollees in Anchorage serves as a liaison between Alaska Tribes and the EPA. He provides technical assistance on all facets of sustainable waste management to federally recognized tribes in Alaska, and directly supports tribes by providing them with multiple types of information on waste resources, such as useful/ related websites, brochures, reports, pamphlets, regulations, etc. He also provides Rural Alaska Landfill Operators training, Rural Alaska Landfill Administrators training and other types of training to Alaska tribes, and provides outreach and education to tribes via the Alaska Tribal Environmental Conference, the Alaska Forum and other venues.

For more information about NAPCA’s management of the SEE program, please visit http://www.NAPCA.org.