Visitor Use Survey Corps

The Army Corps of Engineers Visitor Use Survey Program (ACE VUS) is an SCA partnership that provides members a valuable and enjoyable opportunity to help the Army Corps of Engineers monitor the use of its beautiful recreational sites across the country. Participants in this program will work in teams of five members, supervised by one project leader, stationed in a location central to the sites the team is tasked with monitoring.

Members, in pairs, collect recreation use information from visitors, primarily through roadside interviews.The interview sites include lakes and other recreation areas.
Corps members collect, organize, and download interview data; use a schedule of scenically selected sample sites for specific dates; collaborate with SCA leader and Army Corps staff; and maintain proper care of supplies and equipment. The teams also design and carry out conservation projects on one or more of the sites they are monitoring. This gives the members an opportunity to interact with Rangers, Project Managers, and other staff, and leave a lasting impact on the sites they are visiting. 

From 2011-2013, members of the Army Corps Visitor Use Survey program have engaged citizens from seven major metropolitan areas each year through their survey work, and completed over 100 community service projects. Members also gain valuable experience in a wide variety of conservation activities, and develop professional connections with a network of government agencies and nonprofit organizations throughout the region.

Members receive monthly living stipends, reimbursement for travel expenses, and are eligible for an AmeriCorps Education reward. Teams live together in SCA-provided housing managed by their team leader. Teams are provided with a budget for food and other necessary living expenses. Personal vehicles are not required.

Trainings Offered: 

  • CPR Certification
  • Wilderness First Aid Certification
  • Leave No Trace (LNT) Outdoor Ethics

Eligibility Requirements: 

Applicants must be at least 21 years of age, have a valid driver’s license, and pass a background check.

Related Posts & Program Information

The Texas summer heat is still rolling, but alas our survey program has ended! Stacy, Allison and I have had a busy last few week, and still have some work to do to finish up, and then we shall sadly be going our separate ways. We’ve worked really hard all season but had such a good time!

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We Wake Up When?

“Time to survey!” the morning person said
Grumble, said her partner
and wished he was in bed

“This scenery’s amazing, even in the dark!”
SNORE, said her partner
Twas all he could remark

“I don’t remember, do we turn left or right?”
Snnnk-hnnnh, said her partner
And dreamed that it was night

“What music should we listen to, Country-Western, Rock?”

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The spring survey season has been great. The Waco team has had the pleasure and opportunity to work with some amazing organizations that share in SCA’s passion and vision for conservation. A few of them made lasting impressions during the season; here are two that stood out. Jay, a Habitat for humanity staff member.

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We’ve completed 10 weeks here in Nashville and things are going great! Erica and Alison have really done a great job with our team and everything is finally going smoothly. On July 10th we had a project day set up at the Poole Knobs Campground in La Vergne, TN with US ACE Park Ranger Amy.

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Sad to say, our summer here has come to an end!

We had some great times speaking to the local public about their Army Corps Lakes, exploring the outdoors, eating yummy dinners, and just enjoying each others company. The last two weeks were bittersweet as we finished our last shifts, and tried to cram in as much fun time as we could.

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