Before enrolling in the California Conservation Corps, applicants must successfully complete an initial orientation and training, called Corpsmember Orientation, Motivation, Education and Training (COMET). COMET takes place at or near the applicant’s assigned center, and lasts one to two weeks.
Upon arrival at COMET, trainees complete enrollment paperwork, are issued uniforms, and are oriented to their CCC center. Those in the residential program receive a room assignment as well.
Week one of COMET is unpaid and includes training such as effective communication, safety and First Aid, hand tool use, sexual harassment and violence prevention, life skills, roadside safety, physical fitness, and an introduction to goal setting.
During this week, trainees must also pass a drug test and physical exam. The physical determines whether trainees can perform the essential functions of being a Corpsmember. After successful completion of the first week of COMET, physical exam, and drug test, trainees are officially enrolled in the CCC and put on payroll.
Week two of COMET typically includes emergency response training, water safety, teambuilding, educational assessments, and more. Once trainees complete this week of COMET, they’re assigned to a crew at their designated center and begin working on projects.