Placer Center at Greenwood

Placer Center Corpsmember Graham Fuller prepares to use a chainsaw to remove trees, brush and other overgrowth to create a shaded fuel break near Colfax, CA.

The Placer Center is a residential facility housing more than 80 Corpsmembers. The center has remained in continuous operation for over forty years serving the State of California. Center operations are currently based at the CCC’s Greenwood Center while the campus in Auburn undergoes renovations.

The Greenwood Center is located in El Dorado County off Highway 193. Built by Corpsmembers in the 1980s, Greenwood’s location has helped Corpsmembers enhance and restore several regions of the Sierra Nevada.

The center conducts conservation work in El Dorado, Placer, Nevada, and Sacramento Counties, and will continue to do so during construction. The center operates two Type I wildland firefighting hand crews, as part of a partnership with CAL FIRE.

4411 Highway 193
Greenwood, CA 95635

Life at the Placer Center

A Placer Wildland Firefighting Corpsmember digs out a smoldering tree root during mop up operations at the November 2018 Camp Fire near Paradise, CA.

Volunteering in nearby communities or for local organizations is a valuable way to get Corpsmembers involved in something bigger than themselves. It allows them to see firsthand how the direct giving of one’s time can affect others in a positive way. Corpsmembers can expect to volunteer a minimum of six hours per month.

In the last year, events have included various Placer County Nature Center events, community tree planting events in the City of Roseville, and support to a children’s therapeutic equestrian center.


Placer Center Corpsmembers place food in a car trunk during a Sacramento Food Bank & Family Services food distribution event as part of the CCC’s COVID-19 response. 

The California Conservation Corps and CAL FIRE established a partnership at the center in spring of 2017. The center houses two Type I wildland fire hand crews overseen by CAL FIRE captains who will also provide technical supervision and training to the crews. Men and women interested in joining the CCC and gaining experience for a career in firefighting should call 800-952-5627.

Project work in recent years has included trail construction, fuel reduction, stream clearance, tree planting, native flora planting and maintenance, highway vegetation maintenance, tree trimming, storm damage clean up, flood emergency response, wild land fire response, and fire camp support. Sponsors include city and county agencies, Department of Water Resources, CAL FIRE, California State Parks, CalTrans, Cal Recycle, U.S. Forest Service, Nevada Irrigation District, and more.

No matter the weather, distance, or type of emergency, the Placer Center is committed to timely response to emergencies with well-trained crews in all circumstances. Whether cutting line, assisting with fire camp operations, sand bagging homes or property during a flood emergency, or staffing emergency shelters, Placer Corpsmembers are ready to offer their services at a moment’s notice.

Education and Training

Corpsmember Raquel Velasquez waits to be handed a sandbag during the 2018 Flood Fighter exercise in Stockton, CA. All Corpsmembers are trained in flood fighting techniques. 

All Corpsmembers at the Placer Center are required to complete Corpsmember Orientation, Motivation, Education, and Training (COMET) and core training courses.

The Conservation Awareness core course is instructed by subject matter experts from the Placer Nature Center. The Career Development and Transition core course is instructed by subject matter experts from the Placer School for Adults.

Specialized trainings and certifications available at the Placer Center include:

  • CAL FIRE Type I Firefighter Training
  • Chain Saw Training and Certification
  • Chipper Safety & Training
  • First Aid & CPR
  • Flora and Fauna Identification
  • Herbicide Application and Safety
  • Hazardous Waste Operations and Emergency Response (HAZWOPER) 40-Hour Training
  • Pesticide Handler Safety
  • Power Tools Safety and Operation
  • Trail Construction and Maintenance

Many Corpsmembers are currently enrolled in Emergency Medical Technician courses through Sierra College.

The CCC is a one year program, however it is possible for Corpsmembers to promote into a second year as a Specialist or as a Crewleader.

Through a partnership with John Muir Charter School, CCC Placer Center offers classes to Corpsmembers in need of their high school diploma. Many Corpsmembers consider earning their high school diploma to be one of most important achievements obtained while in the CCC.