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Summer Aquatic Ecology Member, New River Gorge National River

Summary: American Conservation Experience (ACE), a nonprofit Conservation Corps, in partnership with New River Gorge (NERI) National River in West Virginia is seeking ONE Aquatic Ecology Member to dedicate 12 weeks to the NERI Natural Resource Management staff mainly to assist with water quality monitoring, laboratory analyses, and long-term ecological monitoring of riverine biota.
This opportunity is intended for enthusiastic, emerging professionals with a background in aquatic ecology, fishery biology, biology, zoology, natural resource management, or environmental science.
Start Date: May 4, 2020 (flexible by 1-2 weeks)
End Date: July 24, 2020 (or 12 weeks after start date)
* A 12-week commitment is required *  
Location: New River Gorge National River, Glen Jean, West Virginia.
New River Gorge National River is located in southern West Virginia and encompasses 70,000 acres and 53 miles of one of the oldest rivers on the continent. NERI is home to a vast array of natural and cultural resources. Renowned for its recreational opportunities, NERI host miles of hiking and biking trails, premiere whitewater rafting, rock climbing, fishing, hunting, bird watching, and camping.
Park staff also manages nearby Bluestone National Scenic River (BLUE) and Gauley River National Recreation Area (GARI). BLUE protects 10.5 miles of free-flowing river and offers a rich variety of natural resources and history along the Bluestone Turnpike Trail. GARI protects 25 miles of the Gauley River and 6 miles of Meadow River. Known for its multiple class V rapids, GARI is one of the most adventurous rivers in the east.
Project Website: For more information about the park, please visit their website at:
For more information regarding American Conservation Experience:
Living Allowance: The ACE Member is expected to contribute ~40 hours/week and will receive a living allowance of $250/week to cover the costs of food and incidental expenses, dispersed bi-weekly. A $250 reimbursement is available for relocation or commuting expenses.
Housing: The ACE Member will be accommodated in park housing at no cost for the duration of the term and consists of a furnished house located 6 miles from park headquarters and 13 miles to the nearest grocery store. Absolutely no pets are permitted in government housing.
The member will have use of a government vehicle for project-related travel, though a personal vehicle is required for time off and transportation to/from the park.
AmeriCorps: This position may be eligible for a 450-hour AmeriCorps Education Award ($1,612.43) upon successful completion of the term. Additional enrollment is required.
Position Description: The ACE Member will learn about natural resource management issues through interactive experiences and assignments at New River Gorge National River, Bluestone National Scenic River, and Gauley River National Recreation Area. They will assist Natural Resource Management staff and partners with water quality field monitoring, laboratory analyses, and data management. The member will interact with the public and share information on park resources and issues, including challenges such as water pollution.
TrainingNPS will provide training on protocols for safe and valid field sampling, laboratory analyses, and safety techniques such as CPR and first aid. Cross-training opportunities are encouraged and can include amphibian surveys, bird netting, mine portal surveys for bats, invasive species management, vegetation management, GIS, and interpretive programs/education.
Physical Demands: The environment for the collection of aquatic samples requires physical demands of walking on uneven, rocky, and slippery surfaces; standing, bending, stretching and stooping; lifting and carrying equipment; wading in ankle to chest deep water; and exposure to hot, humid, and rainy conditions. 
Qualifications: Applicants for the position must hold or be pursuing a minimum of a bachelor's degree and/or have relevant experience in subject areas such as ecology, marine biology, botany, wildlife sciences, biology, natural resources management, environmental science, or related disciplines.
  • Willing and able to represent ACE and the partner organization in a professional, positive, and enthusiastic manner. 
  • The member must be physically able to serve outdoors for long hours in intense weather conditions and walk miles of uneven, wet terrain while carrying equipment.
  • Proven ability to be both self-directed/work alone, and be a positive, contributing member of a group
  • Must be 21-35 years of age (This position's age limitations are a requirement of the Public Land Corps Act. Additionally, members must be 21+ to apply for an ACE position that requires or anticipates operation of agency or ACE vehicles for duties.)
  • Military Veterans up to 35 are encouraged to apply
  • Must have a valid driver's license and an insurable driving record.
  • documentation to be provided upon request.
  • A personal vehicle is required
  • US Citizen or Permanent Resident
  • Willing to undergo and must pass a federal criminal background check.
  • Ability to safely follow procedures used in the field
  • Desire to learn and apply new concepts
  • Degree or coursework in aquatic ecology, fishery biology, ichthyology, biology, zoology, physiology, entomology, ecology, environmental science, natural resource management, conservation, or hydrology
  • Experience with field data collection and laboratory procedures
To Apply: Please submit a thoughtful resume and cover letter along with three (3) professional/academic references using the APPLY NOW section located on the upper right hand corner of the position listing on our website, found through the external apply link on Handshake.
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 Eastern Recruitment Specialist, Madison Douthitt, (828) 329-4793,
EOE: 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.