Aquatic Macroinvertebrate Monitoring - Shenandoah National Park - AmeriCorps Eligible
Summary: American Conservation Experience, a nonprofit Conservation Corps, in partnership with the National Park Service, is seeking TWO Aquatic Macroinvertebrate Monitoring Members to work alongside Shenandoah National Park staff collecting aquatic macroinvertebrates samples and habitat measurements at sites throughout the park.
Start Date: April 11, 2021
End Date: July 3, 2021
*A 12-week commitment is required*
Location: Shenandoah National Park Headquarters, Luray, Virginia
Shenandoah National Park contains 196,000 forested acres along the crest of the Blue Ridge Mountains in northern Virginia. The Park's backcountry of steep rugged terrain contains 500 miles of trails, including 95 miles of the Appalachian National Scenic Trail, and nearly 80,000 acres of federally designated wilderness. Skyline Drive, the famous scenic tour road through the Park, follows the ridge crest for 105 miles and connects to the Blue Ridge Parkway. Nearly two million people visit the Park each year to enjoy views from the Skyline Drive, hike trails, rock climb, enjoy nature study, camp, or stay overnight in one of the Park's rustic lodges or backcountry cabins. The Park supports approximately 1400 vascular plant species, numerous state-rare plant species, and a variety of forest community types. The mountain streams are inhabited by 40 species of fishes, over 230 taxa of aquatic invertebrates and provide some of the best protected strongholds for native eastern brook trout south of Maine.
Project Website: For more information regarding Shenandoah National Park, or the National Park Service, please visit: www.nps.gov/shen/
For more information about benthic macroinvertebrates in Shenandoah National Park: www.nps.gov/im/midn/benthic-macroinvertebrates-shenandoah.htm.
For more information about ACE, please visit: www.usaconservation.org.
Living Allowance: The ACE Member is expected to contribute ~40 hours/week and will receive a living allowance of $190/week to offset the costs of food and incidental expenses, dispersed bi-weekly. They will also receive a $600 travel allowance that will be distributed evenly throughout the term to aid in the costs of relocation and commuting to the duty station.
Housing: ACE members will be accommodated in provided park housing at no cost for the duration of the term.
Housing consists of several homes with double occupancy bedrooms; however, occupancy will likely be limited to one person per house due to COVID-19. Housing will likely be near Skyland Resort where there is limited cell-phone reception and no internet at the houses. A portion of the housing allowance is intended to offset the cost of commuting to Park Headquarters in a personal vehicle. Luray, VA is a 35 minute drive from Skyland Resort and 5 miles from Park Headquarters and has all of the standard amenities (Grocery stores, movie theater, shops, restaurants, library etc.). Laundry facilities are also available at park housing locations.
Cell phone reception is not always reliable. A personal vehicle is required. The site is remote and there is no reliable public transportation. The Member will have use of a government vehicle for project related travel.
AmeriCorps: This position may be eligible for a 450-hour AmeriCorps Education Award ($1,638.89) upon successful completion of service hours. Additional enrollment and volunteer service is required.
Position Description: During the first six weeks of this position, the ACE Member will focus on aquatic macroinvertebrate monitoring. Results from this work help the park service assess stream ecosystem health, and the work entails hiking to stream sites and collecting invertebrates, water quality, and stream habitat information, as well as entering data when in the lab.
The second six weeks of the internship will be more varied. The Member will assist with monitoring fish populations and testing habitat measurement protocols. Other duties include patrolling the developed areas of the park for nuisance black bears, educating visitors about bear conflicts, and conducting peregrine falcon cliff nesting surveys. The Members must be able to navigate steep, rugged, wet terrain with packs up to 45 pounds.
This individual placement is meant to facilitate professional development and promotes exposure to land management agencies and networking with professionals. This could include gaining experience in different conservation fields and shadowing different work groups.
Public Land Corps Hiring Authority: Members serving under this agreement may be eligible for a hiring authority upon completion of their term of service. Eligible members must meet standard requirements of completing at least 640 hours and utilize their certificate before the age of 30.
- Willing and able to represent ACE and the partner organization in a professional, positive, and enthusiastic manner.
- Ability to be both self-directed/work alone, and be a positive, contributing member of a group.
- This position is funded through the Public Land Corps Act which has specific program requirements.
- Must be 18-30 years of age to apply (members must be 21+ to apply for an ACE position that requires or anticipates operation of agency or ACE vehicles for duties).
- Military Veterans up to 35 are encouraged to apply.
- US Citizen or Permanent Resident
- A valid driver's license and an insurable driving record (documentation to be provided upon request).
- Willing to undergo and must pass required criminal history checks.
- Deep interest in natural resources, wetland sciences, and strong desire to learn/serve outdoors is critical
- Must be physically able to walk long distances in mountainous terrain and serve outdoors for much of the day.
- Ability to perform the essential duties of the position with or without reasonable accommodation.
- Competitive applicants for this position can hold or be pursuing a minimum of a bachelor's degree and/or have relevant experience in subject areas such as ecology, biology, wetland sciences, natural resource management or a related discipline.
Please note: Marijuana and other controlled substances are not allowed at any time during the performance of duties or while on federal property, regardless of State law or qualified medical marijuana card status.
To Apply: Please submit your resume, a cover letter demonstrating your interest and experience, and contact information for three professional/academic references to the online application page for this position here: https://usaconservation.applicantpool.com/jobs/. Early consideration will be given as resumes are received. This position may close at any time. If you have any questions regarding this position please feel free to contact ACE EPIC NPS Eastern Member Coordinator, Madison Douthitt at firstname.lastname@example.org.
EEO: 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.