Natural Resource Steward - High Peaks Wilderness

Expected Dates
May 22, 2022 to November 5, 2022
NYS Department of Environmental Conservation
Position ID
Come help protect the scenic Adirondack High Peaks while gaining valuable natural resource management skills by becoming a Natural Resource Steward.  This position seeks to place four interns within high-use and ecologically sensitive parts of the High Peaks, who will work alongside officials from  the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC) on projects that help preserve and protect this unique natural resource.

 Natural Resource Stewards receive weekly stipend of $160 and a monthly $570 housing allowance. Interns will be eligible to receive an AmeriCorps Education award at the completion of their service.

Duties for this position include, but is not limited to:
- Provide information and education to the public relating to the proper use and protection of the natural resource
- Promote Leave-No-Trace practices
- Provide assistance and advice to public regarding trails and other facilities
- Record data on trail and camping area conditions, using specific indicators developed to assess impacts of use on the natural resources, to assist the Department in its visitor use monitoring programs
- Collect information on user group size, use of specific trails and camping sites, types of recreation (biking, boating, hiking, etc.), and user experience, to assist the Department in its visitor use monitoring programs
- Inspect trails and other facilities to determine condition and maintenance requirements
- Trail clearing and brush removal using hand tools (saws, loppers, etc.)
- Building new trail, campsites or other infrastructure
- Installing trail signs and markers
- Campsite remediation and debris removal
- Record GPS tracks and points, as well as photos
- Assist in backcountry emergencies including search and rescue, injuries and evacuation
- Maintain radio communication with DEC dispatch for safety and also emergency situations
- Maintain records including documenting work on a map over the course of the season
- Other conservation-related duties as assigned 

This position requires the willingness and ability to travel by foot and work alone or in small groups in remote, extremely rugged terrain and inclement weather conditions. The intern will mostly work Monday-Friday, with occasional weekend work. The ability to use a map and compass, a GPS unit and strong backpacking skills are essential.

Minimum Qualifications
- Must be 18 years of age or older;
- Must have Associates Degree or 60 college credit hours in environmental education, natural resources management, biology, environmental studies, or a related field preferred or 6 months experience in environmental conservation work in a park or recreation setting;
- Must have a valid driver’s license;
- Must be physically capable of performing field work common to the assigned work area over extremely rough terrain and during inclement weather; and
- Have strong backpacking and wilderness camping skills
- Basic First Aid and CPR required.  Wilderness Advanced First Aid is optional.
- Have taken an outdoor education course or have outdoor education experience

Conviction of a felony may bar appointment or result in removal after appointment.

The SCA is committed to creating a diverse environment and is proud to be an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, national origin, disability, age, or veteran status.

Day to Day View of Position
A crew of 4 will make up the basic working group each week. Depending on priorities and tasks that need to be done the crew will be split up or added to with DEC staff, other SCA or Volunteer workers to accomplish assignments.

Conditions of Employment

Candidates will be 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;
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.
  • The High Peaks Wilderness is the largest wilderness area in New York State. It is located in the eastern region of the Adirondack Park in northern New York. The wilderness encompasses approximately 260,000 acres of Forest Preserve land. The topography consists of most of the high elevation mountains in northern New York, ranging in height to 5344 ft above sea level. The terrain is steep and demanding. There are several hundred miles of marked trails and many miles of unmarked paths in this wilderness area.
  • Orientation training, back country trail work, campsite and facility monitoring, Leave No Trace
  • No
Main Area of Focus
Education and Interpretation
Education, Training & Skills Expected
some coursework or experience
some coursework or experience
Earth Sciences
some coursework or experience
Mathematics & Data Analysis
some coursework or experience
Recreation Management
some coursework or experience
competent without supervision
Data Entry
some experience
some experience
Public Speaking
some experience
Trail Maintenance
some experience