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2022 NPS Academy Colorado River District Member - Rocky Mountain National Park - AmeriCorps Eligible

Job Location

Grand Lake, CO


Type of Job




Published By

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Published Date

Nov 23, 2021

About the job

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Summary: American Conservation Experience, a nonprofit Conservation Corps, in partnership with Rocky Mountain National Park, is seeking 1 Member to work with interpretation doing visitor orientation work in visitor centers and on trails, visitor and resource protection doing wilderness permitting, search and rescue, and patrols, and with facilities management doing road, trail, and/or facility maintenance. During this 12-week term the Members will participate in a wide variety of projects while learning about the National Park Service (NPS) as a career path. This member will be part of the 2022 NPS Academy Cohort.


For more information about NPS Academy, please visit:

For more information about ACE, please visit:


Start Date: 6/5/2022

End Date: 8/27/2022

*a 12-week minimum commitment is required and participation in the orientation March 21st-25th*


About NPS Academy: The National Park Service (NPS) Academy is an innovative and immersive program designed to introduce a diversity of participants, ages 18 to 30 (or Military Veterans up to 35) from backgrounds historically underrepresented in the National Parks, to career opportunities with the NPS. Participants come away equipped with knowledge about the NPS mission and the NPS Universal Competencies that are considered the foundation of all careers in the NPS and are critical to all park service employees. The NPS Academy maximizes career opportunities with NPS through training and hands-on experiences. This program is generously funded by Grand Teton National Park Foundation.


Program Goals: The major goals of the NPS Academy are to:

  • Connect a diverse group of young adults sharing a passion and curiosity for careers within the NPS
  • Deepen participants' knowledge of and personal network within the NPS by fostering an NPS mentorship relationship
  • Develop a network of emerging conservation and park leaders by building ambassadorship, storytelling, and leadership skills
  • Create a more inclusive future for public lands

Location: Rocky Mountain National Park: Grand Lake, CO (Colorado River District)The "Rocky Mountain National Park Act" was signed by President Woodrow Wilson on January 26, 1915, establishing the park boundaries and protecting the area for the future. The Civilian Conservation Corps built the main automobile route, Trail Ridge Road, in the 1930s and in 1976, UNESCO designated the park as one of the first World Biosphere Reserves. As recently as 2018 more than 4.5 million visitors entered the park and it is one of the most visited in the National Park System, ranking #3 most visited. When Congress passed the Rocky Mountain National Park Act in 1915, the legislators focused on Rocky's scenic and natural wonders, though its human history is robust as well.


This position is located high in the mountains on the west side of Rocky Mountain National Park. This position is duty stationed out of the Kawuneeche Visitor Center, located at 8700' on the west slope of the continental divide, approximately two miles north of the village of Grand Lake, Colorado. Near the park are a few small rural communities (Grand Lake and Granby being the nearest). Small markets, some shopping, and several restaurants can be found in Grand Lake. Supermarkets are in Granby (25 min.) and Fraser (40 min.). The nearest movie theater is in Winter Park (45 min.). From Memorial Day weekend through mid-October, weather permitting, Trail Ridge Road is open through the park, to park headquarters and the town of Estes Park, Colorado (1 hr 30 min). The large urban city of Denver is approximately 2 hours away.


For more information about Rocky Mountain National Park please visit:


Living Allowance: The ACE Member is expected to contribute ~40 hours/week and will receive a living allowance of $480/week to offset the costs of food and incidental expenses, dispersed bi-weekly.


Housing: Housing and travel assistance to and from park location will be provided. The ACE Member will be accommodated in park housing at no cost for the duration of the position.


AmeriCorps: This position may be eligible for a 450-hour AmeriCorps Education Award $1,678.57 upon successful completion of service hours. Additional enrollment steps are required.


Scheduling: Five 8-hour days (positions will work weekends) and two days off (days off will be during the week). Work day usually starts between 7am to 10am depending on daily duties.


Position Description: The Member will have opportunities for projects and responsibilities in a variety of roles during their summer at ROMO. Duties will be shared primarily between:


Interpretation: assisting with visitor orientation and information at the Kawuneeche Visitor Center and on trails. Assist with informal interpretation and short interpretive programs and pop-ups at the Holzwarth Historic Site and within the first mile of popular trails and scenic overlooks. May have the opportunity to craft a social media post for the Rocky Mountain National Park social media accounts.


Visitor and Resource protection: Provides Preventive Search and Rescue (PSAR) to visitors at park trailheads, accurately relaying hazards on the trail and environment. Assist Law Enforcement park rangers with managing congested visitor and traffic areas, including animal jams and Visitor Center parking areas. Assist with backcountry roves.


Facilities management: doing road, janitorial, and/or facility maintenance projects such as painting and carpentry.


Additional Experience: ROMO provides a spectrum of experience intended to grow the Members through field experience and training, assistance integrating into park life, and building strong connections among Members and personnel for future support as they pursue NPS careers. Each Member will be assigned a mentor in their park district who will meet with them regularly to provide insight, help adjust to park life, provide resume and application advice, and assist the Member in creating an individual career development plan.


Onsite park leads will assure that Members are trained sufficiently, whether formally or on the job, to perform up to expectations and they will assign clear tasks and goals. As needed, the park leads will coach, evaluate and counsel Members. The park leads agrees that the program is developmental and will allow Members to shadow jobs, meet with mentors and participate in trainings during the Members' scheduled work week. ACE staff and the Outreach Program Manager will conduct a workshop for NPS leads/mentors on cultural awareness and coaching Members who are new to the NPS and/or the outdoors.


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.


Skills: An important reminder: all skills needed for this position will be trained on the job; a good attitude, curiosity for learning, and a willingness to work hard contributing to the team are the only prerequisites to finding success.


Essential skills: An interest in a career in the National Park Service and a field of study or work in preparation for such a career. Studies or work may include environmental studies, anthropology, American history, geology, forestry, resource management, ecological restoration, natural sciences, law enforcement, or a trade such as landscaping, carpentry, painting, etc.


Additional skills that are helpful:

  • Have a deep interest in natural and cultural history
  • Be passionate about serving the public through your work and interactions
  • Experience or interest in fly fishing

Skills that members will gain from this position:

  • Interpretive techniques and how those can be applied to informal interactions
  • Interpersonal communication & Public speaking
  • Fishing historically and today
  • Customer service
  • Time management
  • Accessibility guidelines and policy
  • Networking
  • Basic skills in general maintenance
  • Flagger training and managing traffic flow
  • Deescalation techniques
  • Decision making
  • Institutional knowledge of the National Park Service

Physical Demands, Work Environment and Working Conditions:


Physical Demands: Requires frequent sitting, standing, walking, carrying, using hands to handle, feel, indicate directions. Manual dexterity required for use of computer keyboard/mouse and other routine office equipment as well as hand tools and interpretive props. Often required to stoop, kneel, climb stairs, and/or crouch. Must be able to walk over a mile on uneven ground and/or trails with or without reasonable accommodation.


Vision Requirements: Requires close, distance, peripheral and depth perception vision as well as the ability to focus.


Weight Lifted or Force Exerted: Frequently moves up to 10 pounds, occasionally moves up to 25 pounds. Rarely moves larger loads with another person or assistance from a tool such as a dolley.


Environmental: Approximately 25% of the work will be in a climate controlled, shared office setting or standing at a desk in the climate controlled visitor center. Currently any worked done in a shared office or with the public requires wearing a mask. This policy may be updated before or during the season. The other 75% will be primarily outdoors. Wildlife hazards include moose and elk which move through the meadows adjacent to Holzwarth Historic Site and other popular sites. It is imperative that all staff have situational awareness and give space to wildlife.


Summers are typically mild to cool with daytime temperatures averaging in the 70s and evening temperatures in the 30s or 40s. Temperatures become cooler and winds stronger at higher elevations in the park. Carrying layers is suggested. We typically see afternoon thunderstorms which pose a hazard at high elevation. During thunderstorms staff must shelter indoors or in a car and should not remain out in the open. The sun is strong and can burn quickly when shade is unavailable.


Travel: This position requires nearly daily travel within the first 10 miles into the park, occasional travel of up to 20 miles into the park and rare travel to the east side of the park, a 45 mile and 1.5 hour drive. All driving on duty will be in a government vehicle. Upon being hired the initial background check will require fingerprinting at a facility that may be up to 2 hours from a given residence. This will need to be completed prior to the start date.


ACE Requirements:

  • Members must be US citizen or Permanent Resident, as required to comply with U.S. government contracts
  • Attendance of the NPS Academy Orientation held March 21st-25th, 2022 (travel costs covered by ACE)
  • 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.
  • A current and valid form of ID (will be required to provide copies of ID's upon hiring)
  • Willing to undergo and must pass required criminal history checks.
  • Ability to perform the essential duties of the position with or without reasonable accommodation.
  • ACE Members must verify that they are fully vaccinated for Covid-19 or have requested and been granted a medical or religious exemption to vaccination by the time they start their term.

To Apply: Please submit your resume, a cover letter demonstrating your interest in the position and NPS Academy, as well as contact information for three professional/academic references to the online application page for this position here. 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 Member Coordinator, Deidra Goodwin at


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.

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