Hemlock Conservation Technician Steward

Expected Dates
January 17, 2023 to November 14, 2023
Finger Lakes State Parks, NYS OPRHP
Position ID
This position requires that you become enrolled in AmeriCorps.  If you are selected for this program, please be sure to accept AmeriCorps during the SCA offer process.  No travel allowance will be offered for this position even if it is stated on your confirmation of acceptance.
Due to Covid-19, events and trainings are subject to change in response to an increase in the number of cases in the Hudson Valley region. Such changes include but are not limited to: trainings being held remotely, elimination of large-scale gatherings, and a reduction of education programs.
Conditions of Employment Required to demonstrate full vaccination status for Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) with a Food and Drug Administration (FDA) authorized or FDA-approved COVID-19 vaccine; OR Receive from SCA a reasonable accommodation granting an exemption from vaccine requirements based on a medical disability or because of a sincerely held religious belief. Additional information and instructions regarding how to request a reasonable accommodation will be provided at the time of selection.

New York’s Finger Lakes Region is seeking an enthusiastic Hemlock Conservation Technician for the 2023 season. Apply to be a SCA New York State Parks Corps member today!

About the NYS Parks Corps: Service activities range from providing environmental education and interpretation, to trail restoration, wildlife management, and organizing volunteer events. All 21 Parks Corps members will gather regularly in Central NY for SCA trainings and other professional development opportunities as they arise. (**See Covid caveat above for potential exceptions to 2023 events) Members share housing in groups of 1-4 members per location. NYS Parks Corps members serve under the direction of regional Parks staff to assist in accomplishing the mission of the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation; to provide safe and enjoyable recreational and interpretive opportunities for all New York State residents and visitors and to be responsible stewards of our valuable natural, historic, and cultural resources.
This position is located in New York’s Finger Lakes Region, with housing in Trumansburg, NY.

Purpose of the Hemlock Conservation Program: Gorges and streams in the Finger Lakes depend heavily on eastern hemlock (Tsuga canadensis) forest communities to regulate water temperature, filter sediment and nutrient loading, and provide habitat benefits to the watershed. The Hemlock Conservation Program seeks to protect hemlock forests in the Finger Lakes from hemlock woolly adelgid through monitoring, mapping, and management of hemlock woolly adelgid.

Community Needs that the Position Serves: Cooler water temperatures and filtration provided by hemlock forests help prevent harmful algal blooms, thereby keeping public beaches open and recreational lake activities possible. Brook trout and other native NY fish rely on cool stream habitats to survive, and hemlocks help maintain clear, cool streams that provide recreation opportunities to anglers. Hemlock forests prevent severe gorge erosion to allow for hiking, biking, foliage viewing opportunities. The work of this program also preserves centuries old vistas within the Finger Lakes.

Values and Standards of the Program/Position: 
SCA’s mission is to build the next generation of conservation leaders and inspire lifelong stewardship of the environment and communities by engaging young people in hands-on service to the land.  

The Mission of the Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation is to provide safe and enjoyable recreation and interpretive opportunities for all New York State residents and visitors and to be responsible stewards of our valuable natural, historic and cultural resources.

AmeriCorps Member Duties and Responsibilities: 
  • Conduct pre-and post-treatment monitoring of hemlocks to quantify new growth and adelgid density.
  • Prepare areas prior to chemical treatment, including tagging trees, mapping treatment areas, and transporting water to be staged within treatment areas.
  • Candidate should be willing to become a Licensed Pesticide Apprentice, and to apply chemical treatments alongside a Certified Applicator and other certified staff for the preservation of hemlock forests.
  • Candidate should be comfortable applying chemicals and working adjacent to chemicals while in proper protective gear.
  • Communicate with park staff and partners about logistics and work plans.
  • Ability to articulate hemlock preservation needs through education and outreach.
  • Process and input data collected in field to create maps, spreadsheets, and reports.
  • Able to collaborate with partners to plan for future biocontrol of HWA; Finger Lakes Prism and New York State Hemlock Initiative.
  • Member may work with FORCES (Friends of Recreation, Conservation and Environmental Stewardship) on a variety of projects and initiatives including but not limited to Spotted Lanternfly, Benthic Macroinvertebrate sampling, Oak Wilt, Beech Leaf disease, and salamander surveys, mapping projects, trail work, and volunteer coordination.
  • Member might also be asked to help staff large events in the region such as I Love My Park Day and Earth Day events
  • Work conditions include uneven terrain, heat, cold, rain, and frequent exposure to poison ivy, thorns, ticks, wild parsnip, and biting insects. Additionally, some days may extend past normal work hours but will not exceed the typical work week hours.

Performance Goals for the AmeriCorps Member:
Goal 1: Being a contributing member of a fast-paced environmental field team, and completing work tasks safely and professionally.
Goal 2: Enhance surveying, monitoring, GIS, and interpretive skill sets no matter the member’s level of experience initially.
Goal 3: Gain appreciation and thorough understanding of importance of hemlock conservation and the role it plays in watershed dynamics.

Candidate Qualifications:

  • Ability to pass a background check.
  • Valid driver license.
  • Must be at least 18 years of age.
  • Must be a U.S. citizen, U.S. National, or Lawful Permanent Resident Alien.
  • Two years of college or other post-secondary school experience in a relevant field.

Skills, Knowledge, and Training:

  • Attention to detail
  • Ability to work independently or as a part of a team
  • Ability to work in a range of temperatures and conditions
  • Ability to focus on tasks outside and at a computer
  • Professionalism
  • Ability to manage time well
  • Capable of self-starting when turns in weather call for a change in task
  • Enthusiasm to learn and make the position their own
  • Willingness to learn Arc GIS and mapping skills.
  • General knowledge of environmental principles and forest dynamics a plus.

Amount of the Segal AmeriCorps Education Award being offered for successful completion of the member’s term of service: $6,495

Amount of living allowance member will receive: $300/week living allowance

Healthcare coverage (if applicable): Eligible for free health insurance
Childcare coverage (if applicable): Eligible for childcare assistance through AmeriCorps

Student loan forbearance and interest payments, (if the member qualifies): Eligible for Federal Student Loan forbearance and interest payment deferment through AmeriCorps for qualifying student loans.

Training Opportunities: All SCA NYS Parks Corps members receive Wilderness First Aid, CPR, Leave No Trace, Mental Health First Aid, and professional development. Environmental Education Stewards receive Certified Interpretive Guide training while Conservation Stewards receive Game of Logging 1 & 2. Optional trainings include NYSOEA, the American Canoe Association Quick Start Your Canoe Training, and other opportunities that arise through the SCA and the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation.


  • No
Main Area of Focus
Education, Training & Skills Expected
some coursework or experience
some coursework or experience
Ecology & Restoration
some coursework or experience
some experience
Data Entry
some experience
some experience
Hand Tools
some experience
Plant Identification
some experience
Public Speaking
some experience
Trail Maintenance
some experience