Summary: American Conservation Experience (ACE), a nonprofit conservation corps, in partnership with Cuyahoga Valley National Park, is seeking ONE Native Plant Nursery Intern to serve primarily engaging volunteers with native plant restoration and seed collection events, and projects involving the park's native-plant nursery, propagating and planting native species for disturbed habitat at the park. The Native Plant Nursery produces more than 20,000 container plants annually propagated from seeds collected locally for use in restoration and native landscaping.
This opportunity is intended for an enthusiastic professional with a background in conservation biology/ecology, horticulture, natural resource management, plant science, botany, or a closely related field, with a deep interest in advancing career goals through hard work and commitment to Cuyahoga Valley National Park's professional staff and diverse resources.
Start Date: ASAP, September 2017 (start date must be before October)
End Date: 13 weeks from the start date
* A 13-week commitment is required *
Location: Cuyahoga Valley National Park, Ohio
Cuyahoga Valley NP protects 33,000 acres surrounding the Cuyahoga River between Cleveland and Akron in northeast Ohio. The park's mission is to preserve and protect the historic, scenic, natural, and recreational values of the Cuyahoga River Valley for public use and enjoyment and to maintain open space in an urbanized environment. The park is dominated by deciduous forest but also supports meadows, wetlands, and farming. More than 53% of the park is considered functional riparian area. Summers are moderately warm with average temperatures in the 70's and 80's but with occasional warm spells in the 90's. Winters are moderately cold with average temperatures in the 20's and 30's; heavy snowfall is not unusual.
Project Website: For more information regarding the Cuyahoga Valley National Park or area, please visit the park's website at www.nps.gov/cuva. For more information regarding the ACE Internship Program (EPIC), please visit: www.usaconservation.org.
Compensation: The ACE intern will serve 40 hours/week and receive a living allowance of $195/week for food and incidental expenses, paid bi-weekly.
Dormitory housing will be provided by NPS. Also travel funds are provided to cover expenses to/from and during a native seed cleaning in Corning, NY.
AmeriCorps: This position may be eligible for a 450-hour Education award ($1,527.45) upon successful completion of internship service hours. Additional enrollment is required.
Position Description: Under direction of the park's Plant Ecologist, the Native Plant Nursery Intern will manage the park's native-plant nursery, focusing on propagating a variety of herbaceous and woody plants for restoring native habitat at the park. The intern also will coordinate collection of native plant materials (seeds and cuttings) and will engage with volunteers to collect native seed, maintain and propagate plants and manage nursery operations, including assisting with or leading the distribution and installation of native plants at restoration sites. The intern occasionally will assist the park's exotic-plant-management crew in managing invasive plants using chemical and mechanical methods. Many projects, including plant propagation and restoration activities, will be completed in coordination with sizeable groups of volunteers.
Other projects, including service at the native-plant nursery, may require independent, solitary projects. The intern will travel to the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Plant Material Center in Corning, NY to clean seeds collected throughout the year. Depending on personal interest and timing, the intern may have opportunities to assist on other park projects, such as coyote surveys, deer surveys, butterfly surveys, vegetation monitoring, and wetland monitoring.
Educational/Recreational Opportunities: Excellent recreational and educational opportunities are available near Cuyahoga Valley National Park, including hiking and biking trails, numerous restaurants and theaters, nearby shopping, easy access to Lake Erie and multiple universities and colleges.
Training Provided: The park will provide training to interns in:
(1) plant identification;
(2) propagating native plants;
(3) using GIS and GPS technology;
(4) understanding methods and managing exotic plants with potential to become a state-certified applicator, if interested;
(5) safely using chainsaws and other tools to manage exotic plants and restore habitat;
(6) basic wildland-firefighting and certification, including potential participation during use of prescribed fire at the park.
To Apply: Please submit a thoughtful resume and cover letter along with contact information for 3 professional references using the APPLY NOW section located on the upper right hand corner of the position listing on our website here: www.usaconservation.org.
NOTE: Early consideration will be given as applications are received. This posting may close at any time. If you have any questions regarding this position, please feel free to contact the ACE NPS Recruitment Specialist, Zoe Moskwa at (801) 707-7832 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Qualifications: Applicants must hold/be pursuing an undergraduate degree in ecology, botany, biology, natural resource management, forestry, geography, range management or other natural resource related field.
US Citizen or Permanent Resident
Interns must be 18 to 35 years old
Must be able to communicate clearly and concisely with resource professionals within NPS
Must have effective communication skills with diverse audiences
Must be able to serve alone and in a group
Must have a valid driver's license, clean driving record, and ability to provide documentation, personal vehicles are required
Must have a deep interest in field work and a respect for nature
Must be able and willing to serve outdoors, in varying weather conditions, participating in physical labor
English proficiency is imperative
Ability and willingness to undergo a federal criminal background check
Previous experience in nursery, horticulture or landscaping
Knowledge and understanding of plant taxonomy and identification
Effective communication skills with all ages and diverse audiences
Experience and/or knowledge of chemical and manual treatment of invasive plants
Volunteer supervision and project management
Field proficiency with GPS and/or GIS
The intern must be willing to represent ACE and the NPS in a professional, positive, and enthusiastic manner. Drug users, including recreational smokers of marijuana, should not consider applying, as ACE reserves the right to require drug testing.