Visitor Services Member – Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge
Type of Job
See Job Description
May 25, 2022
About the job
ACE EPIC placements provide young adults with focused, hands-on opportunities to work alongside and under the guidance of agency mentors as they apply their knowledge of resource management on their path to becoming the next generation of resource and land managers.
Funding for ACE positions is provided by a federal program designed specifically for the employment of youth and young adults.
For more information about ACE, please visit: www.usaconservation.org.
Summary: American Conservation Experience, a non-profit youth and young adult conservation corps in partnership with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS), is seeking 1 Visitor Services Member to help mitigate COVID-related impacts on visitor services alongside USFWS Staff. During this term, the ACE member will join our team of young adults working on meaningful conservation projects such as roving outdoor interpretation, outdoor programming, virtual education and/or interpretive programming, and staffing Visitor Centers.
Start Date: May/June 2022
End Date: May/June 2023
**52 week commitment required**
Location: Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge, Folkston, Georgia
For more information about USFWS and the National Wildlife Refuges listed above, please visit: https://www.fws.gov/okefenokee
Work Schedule: Duties will primarily be carried out Tuesday through Saturday. Bi-weekly totals should not exceed 80 hours. A flexible work schedule may be required, which could involve work performed outside of normal work hours including on weekends and/or holidays. Time off may be granted and requests should be directed to ACE and the FWS for approval.
Living Allowance: The ACE Member is expected to contribute approximately 40 hours/week and will receive a living allowance of $600/week to offset the costs of food and incidental expenses, dispersed bi-weekly.
Housing: Housing is the responsibility of the member to find and secure, but ACE will provide a $400/week housing stipend to offset the cost of renting.
Public Land Corps (PLC) Non-competitive Hiring Authority: Members serving on this project may be eligible to receive a Department of the Interior (DOI) PLC non-competitive hiring authority certificate upon completion of their term of service. Eligible members must meet standard requirements of completing at least 640 hours (16 weeks at 40 hours/week) and utilize their certificate when applying for qualifying federal positions within 2 years of receipt. More information can be provided upon request.
This individual placement is meant to facilitate personal growth and professional development and promotes exposure to land management agencies and networking with agency professionals.The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is funding long term interns at field stations to help mitigate COVID-related impacts on visitor services. Projects/duties include activities such as roving outdoor interpretation, outdoor programming, virtual education and/or interpretive programming, and staffing Visitor Centers. Many field stations have experienced increased visitation over the past 18 months, while being impacted by fewer volunteers and interns to perform key operational functions.
Working in Visitor Services your duties will include, but are not limited to, the following:
- Participates in the development, management, and implementation of a high quality and balanced visitor services program by recommending and implementing compatible wildlife-dependent recreation activities.
- Make reservations using recreation.gov; create and send permits to customers if needed. Serves as the primary staff member who answers the refuge's Permit Reservation Phoneline, responding to the public's questions about making an overnight camping permit, the water trail system conditions and permitted routes, and generates permits for individuals utilizing Recreation.gov.
- At the administration information desk, answer visitors' questions are usually routine and repetitive and relate largely to factual situations, such as geographical location of facilities, trails, tour routes, boat ramps, and other recreational areas.
- Responds to public inquiries and processes public comments received via refuge emails; phone calls and in-person inquiries. Takes care of routine matters and, on the basis of knowledge of the refuge, refers other inquiries to appropriate personnel. Personally responds to routine and non-technical requests for information.
- Consistent with current COVID and safety-related guidelines, provides interpretation, environmental education, and recreation based programming for target audiences, as determined by the field station. Programming may also be virtual.
- Coordinates media during visitor service programs, including photography, informational pamphlets, and other informational tools.
- Assists Service staff in developing compatibility determinations for visitor services activities and facilities on refuges.
- Assists Service staff in developing, conducting, and analyzing surveys and visitor use studies; and measuring expectations, quality, and satisfaction regarding the refuge's visitor services program.
- Participates in the development, coordination, and implementation of site or issue specific outreach and communication.
- Identifies potential partnership activities with community organizations and corporations (Scouts, service organizations local governments and businesses).
Physical Requirements: This 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.
Environmental Conditions/Hazards: The ACE member may encounter environmental conditions/hazards including extreme heat or cold, rocky terrain, swamp or wetland conditions, biting insects, and potentially dangerous wildlife. The member is expected to conduct duties in a safe and orderly manner so as not to endanger self, fellow staff/members or resources.
Vehicle and Equipment Use/Safety: If a vehicle is required for the accomplishment of the duties, one will be provided by the FWS or ACE. Any tools required for the accomplishment of the duties will be provided by the FWS. Use of personal protective equipment (PPE), typically provided by the FWS, will be mandatory for any activity that requires it. Strict adherence to FWS and ACE equipment training, certification and safety protocols is required.
- 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.
- U.S. 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.
- Effective communication with visitors via telephone and in person interaction
- Ability to perform the essential duties of the position with or without reasonable accommodation.
- Competitive applicants for this position can hold a minimum of a high school diploma or GED and/or have interest in subject areas such as natural resources, biology, ecology or a related subject.
- Knowledge of interpretive, educational, and recreational programs.
- Customer Service experience/skills.
- Ability and willingness to develop and conduct interpretive and educational programs.
- Ability to work independently and as part of a group.
- Familiarity with Microsoft Office software and other computer programs
- Ability to work in a fast paced/changing environment.
To Apply: Please submit your resume, unofficial academic transcripts, 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/.
NOTE: Early consideration will be given as applications are received. This position may close at any time. If you have any questions regarding this position please feel free to contact ACE EPIC USFWS Division Support Specialist, Claire Barnwell, firstname.lastname@example.org, (585) 484-7626.
Vaccination Requirement: 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.
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.