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Borrego Springs High Students Learn Valuable Skills


Last updated 4/1/2022 at 10:59am

On March 15, 19 Borrego Springs High School juniors and seniors earned accreditation from the National Association for Interpretation (NAI) as Certified Interpretive Hosts. They are currently working hard to achieve a higher, professional level accreditation, as Certified Interpretive Guides which they will attain by the end of the current school year.

The NAI certifications are a valuable asset for the students' future resumes. These certifications, while no guarantee, may help them toward employment or internship with several agencies which utilize hosts and interpreters including California State Parks, San Diego County Parks, the National Park Service, city and town recreation departments, museums, and nature centers.

Many employers in the hospitality industry also recognize NAI Certified Hosts and Guides as a desirable qualification when hiring. As NAI members the students also benefit from the association's website which contains employment opportunities for internships, part-time, seasonal, and full-time jobs in the interpretive field. The communication skills obtained in this course will help the students be successful in their future pursuits in all areas.

The course is sponsored by the Borrego Village Association and made possible by grants from the San Diego Board of Supervisors, the Borrego Springs Rotary Foundation and private donors. The course is led by NAI Certified Trainer, and local resident, Dave Duncan, and organized with the Borrego Springs Unified School District by Community Liaison Martha Deichler.

The curriculum includes extensive field trips into Anza-Borrego Desert State Park where they learn about the nature and science around them. They each receive a high quality pair of hiking shoes and use of binoculars; a compass and an orienteering guidebook.

The goal is to give them the knowledge and ability to make being outdoors part of their lifelong lifestyle as well as the communication skills to share this information with others. They also visit Borrego's civil society organizations, hospitality and service providers and receive in class local subject matter expert guest speakers. The course, a for credit elective, is now in its third year.

By the end of the 2022 school year, a total of 55 students will have completed the NAI Host and Guide Certification Programs. We look forward to continuing with the High School Interpretation Course in 2022 – 23.

Congratulations to Borrego Springs High School's National Association for Interpretation – Certified Interpretive Hosts:

Kaleigh Asche, Haedyn Bliss, Aleksandra Buchowiecka, Minni Camacho, Briem Cole, Shantel Fuentes, Angela Hernandez, Malanie Magdaleno, Layla Nagle, Danica Nehrer, Jimena Ochoa, Alessandra Reyes, Bryan Tronosco, Jorge Vilchez, Naylea Vilarreal, Fanny von Kerssenbrock, Leslie Hernandez, Nikki Willingham, Julio Medina.