Post-WCC

Notable Alumni

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Sam Murray

What was your position with the WCC (how many years)?

I worked with the WCC for four seasons (’10,’11,’12,’14) in various positions, Crew Member (twice), Crew Leader, and finally Field Supervisor. During my last year of WCC, I was also crowned the position of “Arm Wrestling/Corn Hole Champion”, a position I still proudly hold today.

What are you most proud of in your time of service with the WCC?

Driving is a way of life in Wyoming and there is really nowhere in Wyoming that I can drive without being reminded of an old WCC project. For example, if you and I were to drive along I-80, I could tell you about all of the hitches I spent cutting down trees in the Snowies, or the time I spent a week fixing the board walk along Ft. Bridger. Or, if we decided to go North along I-25, I could tell you about the thunderstorms that roll in along Glendo State Park every afternoon or we could talk about the challenges of cutting down Russian Olives along the North Platte River in Casper. Seriously, every road in Wyoming, whether it be the interstate or some wash-boarded forest service road, leads me down memory lane. In the year or two I have spent away from WCC, I often find myself driving through all of my WCC memories and its funny that I often put the memories of the work far in the back seat. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed the work that I completed during my 4 seasons, but I loved the people who I worked with. Today, the majority of my friends come from the 4 summers I spent with WCC. It sounds so cliché to say that your co-workers become your family but if you have ever spent a summer with WCC you know that this is true. WCC very much puts its members into the real world, a world where you are not able to distract yourself every 2 minutes by technology and modern conveniences. In contrast, WCC lets you live in world where you are reliant upon yourself and you are reliant upon the other members of your crew, which truly is a privilege that is rarely given today. When I first signed up for WCC, I was super stoked to be taught the hard skills of trail building and cutting down trees, but what kept me coming back for all those seasons was my desire for the real relationships that only WCC can foster….and of course the copious amounts of bacon.

Where am I today?

I work in an office where not showering for ten days in a row is grounds for termination. I have been told the following: “Sam, you really need to shave that mustache off” , “Sam, do you own a hairbrush”, and my personal favorite “Sam, your Star Wars Crocs are not appropriate work attire”.

All kidding aside- I work for Big Brothers Big Sisters of Southwest Idaho where I am a Match Support Specialist. I enjoy working for Big Brothers Big Sisters because I get to help kids and adults have a lot fun as they are hopefully creating a lifelong relationship. However, I spend the majority of my time encouraging kids to put down the Pokeman Go and go have fun with their mentors.


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Katie Brose

What was your position with the WCC (how many years)?

I was a crew member for two years and then a crew leader for my third year.

What are you most proud of in your time of service with the WCC?

I am most proud of what I learned about myself and about being a leader. I am also proud of the work we did and am planning to visit all the sights I worked on in a big road trip to see how things have held up and been added to by those who came after me.

What have you done since you term of service?

I try to find time to volunteer on conservation type projects. I also help with our school’s Adventure Club and summer school where we take kids outdoors and teach them the value of being outside and caring for our planet in our own Bighorn mountains.

What is your job now and what do you do?

I am a full time music and art teacher at Tongue River Elementary school and live in Sheridan, WY. I still spend most of my weekends and summers outside.


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Elise D’Alessandro

What was your position with the WCC (how many years)?

Crew Member 2013, Crew Leader 2015

What are you most proud of in your time of service with the WCC?

During my time of service with WCC, I am most proud of the trajectory and growth of my crew over the summer (2015). We started the season as a crew of individuals with little conservation experience. However, throughout the season we worked hard to produce quality work, became a team, and crew members had moments of personal growth. In my opinion, WCC is not only focused on conserving Wyoming lands, but also prioritizes the development of individuals, and I am proud that I was able to help contribute to that goal.

What is your job now and what do you do?

I am a graduate student at Georgia State University getting a masters degree in cultural anthropology. I also have a graduate research assistant position and an internship with a local non-profit organization.


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Ben Wiebe

What was your position with the WCC (how many years)?

Crew Member 2013, Crew Leader 2014

What are you most proud of in your time of service with the WCC?

I sought a leadership role with WCC after falling in with an exceptional group of people as a crew member. A first for me, managing a crew of 8 gave me exposure to, and appreciation for the rigor of sustaining a nonprofit. Vertical mobility within WCC allowed me to give back to an organization that I felt had given myself, and the state of Wyoming so much.

As impressive as the physical tasks and completion of projects may be, I am most proud to have been involved in WCC’s impact to the personal development of young people. Throughout private sector employment or in conservation with the Student Conservation Association (SCA), Wyoming Center for Environmental Hydrology and Geophysics (WyCEHG), and the United States Forest Service (USFS), working to fulfill WCC’s mission statement remains some of the most meaningful work I’ve ever been a part of. I can’t imagine who I’d be without two seasons of striving “to promote individual development, stewardship, and education through localized national service.”

What is your job now and what do you do?

Most recently, the benefits of my time with WCC steered me toward a stint as a Wilderness Ranger Intern with the USFS Skykomish Ranger District. Within the umbrella of the Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest, my district sat in Washington’s Cascade Range. Workweeks included 3-day backpacking trips into a number of wilderness areas. The Alpine Lakes, Henry M. Jackson, Glacier Peak and Wild Sky Wilderness areas encircle Skykomish, the town of 200 I called home.


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Alek Angele

What was your position with the WCC (how many years)?

I served in the summer of 2016 as a crew member on Amanda Harper & Christain Bo’s crew, a.k.a. the Badgers!

What are you most proud of in your time of service with the WCC?

All the projects we completed that will be enjoyed by so many people for years and years to come.

How did you grow in your term of service?

My understanding of conservation and the public’s interaction with the outdoors started to come into focus with the WCC. I also grew as a person hanging out with 7 other great people in 6 awesome places all summer.

Do you have any advice for future members/leaders?

Throw yourself into the WCC with everything you have. The more you invest yourself in the WCC the better the experience will be and the more you’ll come out of the summer with. It’s as great as you want it to be.


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Jordan Bishop

What was your position with the WCC (how many years)?

I was a crew member during the 2013 season. I worked at Bighorn Canyon NRA, Casper Mountain, Farris mountains, and others.

What are you most proud of in your time of service with the WCC?

I am most proud of being a part of an organization that does so much good for my state. I am proud to be affiliated with the WCC, who, year after year makes this state a better place to live in.

What is your job now and what do you do?
Since my service, I have worked at a youth crisis facility, earned my teaching certificate, and moved to Abu Dhabi, UAE where I teach US History, Model United Nations, and Economics.


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Thad Miriello

What was your position with the WCC (how many years)?

 I was a crew leader during the 2016 season.

What are you most proud of in your time of service with the WCC?

I am most proud of being a part of and witnessing the emotional, social, and professional growth of individuals on our crew. This experience is not only intended to expand knowledge of conservation oriented skills but more importantly teach some of life’s more priceless gems: how to persevere in the face of adversity, dedication to something bigger than yourself, real mental toughness, and how to connect and be comfortable with complete strangers (including those of a professional nature). I think that each member will carry with them and spread these values wherever they go, making the world a better place in the process.

What is your job now and what do you do?

Today I am a park ranger in charge of creating and maintaining trails and walkways at Natural Bridge State Park in Virginia