By: Norie Wright
This week marks the end of the 2018 Green Ambassador Program. It has been amazing to see how these young people have grown over the past few weeks, learning everything from how to build plant boxes and trellises to how to save money and balance finances.
This week, we decided to highlight one of the Crew Leaders from the Green Ambassador Program. Crew Leaders are older, experienced participants of the program who are in charge of a “crew” of Green Ambassadors. Their job is to facilitate learning, building trust, and helping the Green Ambassadors make the most of their time with GAP.
We are highlighting GAP Crew Leader Nya Segears. Nya is a rising freshman at North Carolina A&T, and is planning on studying agriculture. Her interests include rowing, boxing, and working outside. She has been working with the Green Ambassador Program for 2 years.
Washington Youth Garden: Why did you originally sign up for the Green Ambassador Program?
Nya Segears: I had a internship fair at my high school. We had to have an internship to graduate. I knew I didn’t want to be a doctor or a lawyer or have an office job. I wanted to work outside, so I applied here.
WYG: What’s been your favorite thing about GAP?
NS: I would say building relationships and doing building projects.
WYG: What’s been your favorite project in the garden this summer?
NS: We made cutouts that will be put in places throughout the garden that will beautify the garden.
NS: This is my sunflower. His name is Sunny.
WYG: What is one important thing that working here has taught you? How do you think that will benefit you in the future?
NS: This year I learned how to lead, as a crew leader. Last year was silly and fun, and this year I have to act a certain way as a crew leader and set the tone. I've developed more leadership skills, which will definitely help me later.
WYG: What has been your favorite memory from your time spent here?
NS: We pranked Jake when we went kayaking last year. Him and Kevin went to the bathroom, and while they were gone, we left the classroom and hide. They were so lost when they came back. It was so funny.
WYG: What has been the most challenging task for you this summer?
NS: Learning how to be a good crew leader for my team was hard. I didn't think I was good at it until they told me I did a good job. Being confident is hard.
WYG: What is the dirtiest job you have done this summer?
NS: One day we worked in the garden when it was 100 something degrees, and we were all constantly sweating. But getting “dirty” is just something that happens.
WYG: What is your favorite place in the garden?
NS: The sensory garden because my favorite plant lives there – spilanthes*.
*Farmer’s Note: Spilanthes are notable due to the effect of eating their flower buds, which causes a numbing sensation in the mouth with a cooling sensation in the throat
WYG: What is your favorite vegetable and fruit?
NS: I like apples, grapes, kiwi, and cherries. I think my favorite vegetables are spinach and string beans.
WYG: If you could live anywhere in the world, where would you live and why?
NS: I'd probably live in Africa because that is where my ancestors came from.
Norie Wright is the Events and Communications Intern for the Washington Youth Garden and Friends of the National Arboretum.