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ACE EPIC USFWS Souris River Basin NWR: ONE Invasive Species Intern

Summary: American Conservation Experience, a Nonprofit Conservation Corps, in partnership with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is seeking ONE Invasive Species Intern to help with a diversity of projects involving mapping and management of invasive plants on the Souris River Basin National Wildlife Refuge Complex in north-central North Dakota. There are opportunities to work on other nearby refuges too. The Refuge Complex is located in the Prairie Pothole Region of the U.S., considered the duck factory of North America, and harbors habitat that includes prairie pothole wetlands, mixed grass prairie, aspen parkland, and riparian/coulee forest. The Refuge Complex consists of J. Clark Salyer NWR (59,700 acres), J. Clark Salyer Wetland Management District (5 county area) and Upper Souris NWR (32,000 acres).
Start Date: June
End Date: 22 weeks later
Location: J. Clark Salyer National Wildlife Refuge and/or J. Clark Sayler WMD (part of the Souris River Basin NWR Complex)
Project Website: For more information regarding the Souris River Basin National Wildlife Refuge Complex, please visit:
Housing: Refuge housing is available at NO cost to the Interns. The Bunkhouse is a 5 bedroom, 3 bath, central living room & kitchen.
Compensation: The ACE Intern will complete 40 hours/week and receive a living allowance of $400/week paid out biweekly. 
PLC Competitive Hiring Authority: This position is authorized by the Public Land Corps (PLC) Act of 1993 and expanded by the Public Lands Service Corps Act of 2013. Interns who meet basic requirements during their term of service may be eligible to receive their Noncompetitive Hiring Eligibility Certificate to be used when applying to future federal jobs. Requirements are: (1) Intern must be between the ages of 18 to 30 and (2) Intern must complete at least 640 hours on a federally approved PLC Project. More information can be provided upon request. 
Position Description:
Primary Duties
  • GIS mapping of invasive plants using a rapid protocol established in the Prairie Region 
  • Searching for new infestations (Early Detection Rapid Response) methods may vary by refuge
  • Spot and broadcast application of general use pesticides (with oversight from refuge staff) using light trucks and UTVs.
  • Collection and translocation of leafy spurge beetles for biological control.
  • Maintains station grounds by mowing lawns, mulching, weed eating, and trimming shrubs. Utilizes hand tools or tractors and skid steer type loaders performs work of spreading gravel or soils to rough grades.
Secondary Duties
  • Keeps refuge buildings such as meeting rooms, visitor center, shop, and refuge office clean by sweeping, mopping, vacuuming, cleaning windows, ensuring bathrooms are clean and have the necessary supplies.
  • Washes and fuels vehicles, performs such services as checking, changing oil and water; checking fluid levels in crankcases, power steering, transmissions, batteries, radiators, braking systems, etc.
  • Assists in lifting, carrying, holding materials and performing other related tasks in renovation of building interiors and exteriors,and the replacement of worn plumbing fixtures; performs minor and simple tasks in the removal and replacement of broken window panes and repairs minor leaks in old roofs on buildings, warehouses, offices anddwellings.
  • Assists in the installation, repair and alteration of: cabinets, doors, hardware (such as hinges, catches), interior trim, sheetrock, baseboards, tile, linoleum etc., by holding bracing materials, handling tools, materials or fittings. Uses a variety of wood working tools to cut boards to length, as well as accomplishing shaping, sanding and finishing work.
  • Prepares and paints interior and exterior building surfaces by scraping or brushing to remove old paint and applying new paint or sealant through use of brushes, rollers or sprayers. Work is outlined by supervisor, including materials, methods and tools to be used.
  • Assures that necessary safety equipment is on hand and adequate supplies are available in accessible locations for field
  • Assist with other biological work, and other Refuge work (e.g. public outreach) as opportunities and interest allows.
Physical Requirements: This internship position requires physical exertion such as walking long distances over wet and rough surfaces while carrying up to 40 lbs; bending, crouching, stooping, lifting or reaching. Hand and finger dexterity and physical coordination may involve fine and precise procedures, delicate adjustments or exact measurements.
Work Schedule: Duties will primarily be carried out Monday-Friday. This intern may have projects that begin very early and/or go late into the day and may have weekend duties as well. Bi-weekly totals should not exceed 80 hours. Time off will be granted 
Equipment Use: The Refuge will provide a vehicle and the tools required to accomplish the tasks the Intern is asked to do. Training will be provided for all equipment that the Intern is asked to use, such as UTVs/ATVs. The use of personal protective equipment (PPE) will be mandatory for any activity that requires it (All PPE will be provided). A valid state driver's license is required.
Position Environment: Duties are performed both indoors and outdoors. Temperature and weather extremes can be encountered in the performance of outdoor duties. The intern is expected to conduct duties in a safe and orderly manner so as not to endanger self, fellow staff/interns or resources. The intern will be working outdoors and may be exposed to heat or cold, high humidity, stinging and biting insects, and inclement weather. 
Training: The individual NWRs staff will be responsible for developing the tasks for the interns. Trainings on the regional method of mapping invasive species (rapid assessment using IPads) is expected early in the season. Each refuge will provide a review of pesticide safety procedures and the protocols specific to the refuge. 

Qualifications: Applicants must have a degree (or be pursuing towards a degree) inecology, botany, natural resource management, or other related disciplines appropriate to the position. A combination of relevant education and appropriate experience is also acceptable. Resumes must contain enough information to show that the applicant meets the experience as defined in the internship announcement. 
  • U.S. Citizen or Permanent Resident;
  • At least 21 years of age (as required to operate ACE or Agency vehicles). PLC eligibility for those 30 years of age and under 
  • A valid driver's license, clean driving record, and ability to provide such documentation
  • Must take all measures possible to ensure the safety of yourself and others and understand all safety precautions involved
  • A personal vehicle is required for off-duty hours due to the distance of housing to office and stores
  • Ability to multitask and shift schedule and priorities to meet changing conditions.
  • Commitment to completing tasks thoroughly and on time. 
  • Ability to complete tasks independently and work well in a team
  • Ability and interest in working in the field with variable weather conditions and ability to lift 40 lbs and walk long distances over uneven, wet surfaces. 
  • Skills and abilities to resolve a full range of problems or situations when performing a variety of tasks in a field or office setting.
  • The intern must be willing to represent ACE and the USFWS in a professional, positive and enthusiastic manner. 
  • Experience with invasive plant management
  • Experience identifying native and invasive plants
  • Pesticide applicators license is a plus
  • Experience with data collection software and equipment (ie, GIS and iPads)
  • Ability to follow assigned protocols to perform tasks with many steps.
  • Strong desire to enter the public service field as a natural resource professional.
  • Desire to explore the national wildlife refuges in the Northern Great Plains Prairie Pothole Region.
  • EOE: American Conservation Experience provides equal employment opportunities (EEO) to all employees and applicants for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability or genetics. In addition to federal law requirements, American Conservation Experience complies with applicable state and local laws governing non-discrimination in employment in every location in which the company has facilities.
 To Apply: Please submit a thoughtful resume and cover letter along with 3 professional references using the APPLY NOW section located on the upper right hand corner of the position listing on our website here:
NOTE: Early consideration will be given as applications are received. If you have any questions regarding this position, please feel free to contact ACE EPIC USFWS Recruitment and Member Manger Melissa Early, 801.573.8984 or

Apply Now