Andrus Center for Public Policy and Partners Seek National Student Congress Address Wildland Fire Management

BOISE, ID -- The Andrus Center for Public Policy at Boise State University will be hosting the 2022 Inaugural John Freemuth Student Congress October 3-6, 2022, in Boise, Idaho, and is seeking student applicants. This year’s congress will focus on wildland fire management to explore critical issues such as reducing wildfire risk throughout the country, protecting homes and communities, managing wildfire, and wildfire response.

The Public Lands Foundation, Andrus Center for Public Policy at Boise State University, and National Association of Forest Service Retirees are coordinating this year’s event with the help of the National Interagency Fire Center in Boise, Idaho.
“Wildland fire management is an issue that touches so many lives, particularly throughout the West, where extreme wildfire activity often threatens communities, livelihoods and precious natural resources,” says Danielle Trujillo, Executive Director for the Andrus Center for Public Policy. “This student congress will assess wildland fire management through field work and policy discussions, which will culminate in student-authored reports,” adds Trujillo.

Approximately 25 undergraduate and graduate students are recruited from colleges and universities across the country to ensure a diverse group of students. Students do not necessarily have to be studying natural resources–related fields, but they must have an awareness of and interest in public lands management. Selected students’ travel and participation expenses are covered by the generosity of donors, grant funding, facilitating partners and through the Andrus Center for Public Policy at Boise State University.
Students may apply online at:, and the application deadline is April 18, 2022.

The first Student Congress was held in 2012 in conjunction with a symposium commemorating the 200th anniversary of the creation of the General Land Office (the predecessor of the BLM). Each biennial Student Congress is place-specific and centered on a particular theme, which is why the focus in 2022 is wildland fire management and will include collaboration with the National Interagency Fire Center.

As with previous congresses, this event will feature expert-led presentations, panel discussions, and field trips that will result in student-led recommendations to address current and future wildland fire management issues and public lands management. The congresses focus on four main goals:

  • Educate youth on public land management history and current issues.
  • Engage students, who are the future stewards of our public lands, to provide input and solutions for future public lands management.
  • Expand potential career consideration and enrich student resumes.
  • Memorialize the contributions of Dr. John Freemuth to public policy and public land management.