Vegetation & Ecological Monitoring with the Bureau of Land Management
and Southwest Conservation Corps
Position Title: Crew Member (Botany or Soils Emphasis)
Position Type: Full-time, temporary, 23 weeks
Location: Las Cruces, NM or Carlsbad, NM
Living Stipend: $520/week
Benefits: Paid training; camping food allowance; AmeriCorps Education Award of $2,907.50 upon satisfactory completion of term
Hiring Benefits: Public Land Corps hiring authority: eligible to use, for two years upon completion of term, a noncompetitive hiring status for consideration when applying to competitive service positions for a federal agency.
Program Dates: July 16 – December 18, 2020
Southwest Conservation Corps’s Mission:
It is the mission of the Southwest Conservation Corps (SCC) to empower individuals to positively impact their lives, their communities, and the environment. For more information, visit www.sccorps.org.
Participants will manage all aspects of vegetation monitoring using the Bureau of Land Management’s (BLM) Assessment, Inventory, & Monitoring (AIM) methodology. More information on the BLM’s AIM strategy can be found on the AIM website: http://aim.landscapetoolbox.org/.
Crews will consist of three or four individuals: two or three crew members and one crew lead. Together, they will monitor land health on BLM lands.
Within all plots, vegetation will be identified to species, line-point intercept will be used to gather species cover and composition data, soil stability will be measured, and soil pit descriptions will be completed. All data will be georeferenced using a GPS unit and stored in an ArcGIS geodatabase. Data are entered into a database on site with ruggedized tablets for later use by land management specialists. The crew may also have the opportunity to assist with other public land management projects involving wildlife, range, and forestry, if time allows.
Work will be completed in remote areas on BLM lands. Crews will be required to drive to several different areas of the Field or District Office throughout a four- to eight-day work week, camp overnight, hike several miles a day, and return to the office for equipment and data management.
Botany Crew Member’s Responsibilities:
Provides botanical expertise to the Crew Lead and Soils Crew Member while on plot, as well as to the project as a whole; completes the species inventory the majority of the time. Maintains and tracks botanical specimens of known and unknown species throughout the field season and keep records updated as needed. Continues to learn the local flora from the crew lead and local resources and builds botanical knowledge. Botany Crew Member should be passionate about the botanical world and have a willingness to share that knowledge with the Crew Lead and fellow Soils Crew Member. Botany Crew Member is expected to learn and assist with all of the Soils Crew Member’s responsibilities.
Soils Crew Member’s Responsibilities:
Provides expertise on soils and soils-forming mechanisms that occur on and near plot to help characterize the site. Soils Crew Member will either perform or verify every soil pit characterization completed on plot, namely, soil horizons and textures. Works closely with Crew Lead to discuss and come to consensus on which ecological site or soil series the plot falls on. May maintain specimens and records of unique soils throughout the field office to develop and maintain a unique soil library for the field office. Provides guidance on soil texturing techniques to Crew Lead and fellow Botany Crew Member. Soils Crew Member is expected to learn and assist with all of the Botany Crew Member’s responsibilities.
– College coursework (2 years, at minimum) in ecology, botany, plant ecology, plant biology, plant systematics, soils science, geology, horticulture, natural resource management, environmental science, or a related field;
– OR previous college- or professional-level experience in the above fields, plus familiarity with data collection and sound science principles
– Eligible to accept a 900-hour service term with Americorps
– Aged between 21 and 30 (civilian) or 35 (veteran) years upon hire
– With U.S. Citizenship or Lawful Permanent Residence and associated identification, including an image of a signed social security card AND another acceptable primary form of documentation – Ability to produce identification as stipulated by I-9 upon hire
– Valid US driver’s license and insurable driving record
– Ability to pass Conservation Legacy’s and the Department of Interior’s background checks
– Experience working as part of a small team and able to work well with others
– Excellent communication, organizational, and planning skills.
– Experience with and knowledge of Microsoft Suite Software (Word, Excel, PowerPoint) or other data-collection software
– Self-motivated and able to work independently with limited supervision after the initial training period. The applicant must be able to maneuver and operate in a mixture of office and field work.
– Physically capable of standing and walking (at a minimum 6 miles/day on rough, uneven terrain), bending, crouching and stooping for long periods of time, and lifting/carrying items that weigh up to 40 pounds, in upwards of 100 degree (F) heat while maintaining a professional demeanor.
– Experience and willingness to spending multiple days (1-6 days at a time) car-camping in remote areas; familiarity or willingness to learn and adhere to best practices for field safety and Leave No Trace principles.
– Willingness to spend several hours per day and/or per week riding in, navigating, and driving a company truck on- and off-highway.
– Ability to work in and respond to adverse weather conditions including extreme heat, monsoonal rains, and hazardous wildlife (i.e. rattlesnakes, scorpions, biting/stinging insects, horses)
– Current or ability to obtain CPR, Wilderness First Aid, and Defensive Driver Training certificates
To apply, go to page: https://sccorps.org/small-teams