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Community Volunteer Ambassador – Dinosaur National Monument

Position Details:

Stewards Individual Placements provides individuals with service and career opportunities to strengthen communities and preserve our natural resources. The Community Volunteer Ambassador (CVA) Program combines the strength of a national leader in conservation service with the National Park Service to train a diverse group of emerging leaders to assist park units in building lasting connections to local communities.
 
The Community Volunteer Ambassador will be supervised by DINO Resource Stewardship and Science staff and will spend their time working on various science communication and engagement projects. For example, although river rafting is a popular and sought-after experience in the park and river concessionaire groups take visitors on daily trips along the Green and Yampa Rivers, these groups currently do not have strong relationships with park resources staff. This leads the concessionaires to not provide visitors with the most updated or cutting-edge research occurring in the park or have a sense of shared stewardship amongst parties. Selected CVA will assist is in developing a training program, informational packet, and setting up initial events between Resources staff and concessionaire groups to facilitate this discussion and generate a tangible byproduct that can be easily updated in future years as new research and information becomes available.

Similarly, although a volunteer cultural resources stewardship program was initiated with the Utah State Historic Preservation Office in 2021, very few volunteers are currently engaged and enrolled in the program. There are over 1,000 recorded sites in both UT and CO portions of the park, and the CVA will help with advertising and expanding this volunteer stewardship program and establishing a CO-based counterpart to the UT system (the current volunteer framework is only applicable to Utah cultural sites).
 
CVA will also assist in other projects, such as: digitizing museum collections and collating research
publications into a central location on the park’s webpage so current and previous research endeavors in the park can be more widely shared to the public; generating social media content on current science- based research projects in the park; assisting in the development of volunteer and engagement events with the local community; and assisting with volunteer field events, such as volunteer river-based research trips.


Site Description:

 
Dinosaur National Monument straddles northwest Colorado and northeastern Utah and is located in a high desert environment. The monument preserves over 210,000 acres of land containing a multitude of paleontological, cultural, and natural resources. Some of these resources include diverse ecosystems, a rich paleontological and geological record with over 600 known paleontological sites, and a landscape with over 10,000 years of human history and over 1,000 known cultural sites.
 
Volunteers are currently utilized in the summer season primarily as campground hosts, 'Weed Warriors' in invasive plant management control, and river rafters for work-related river-based research trips. There still remain many gaps, however, in opportunities to connect with the local community and to provide stewardship programming events due to staff shortages and capacities. There are also currently no volunteer-based events in the park. The CVA will help develop these sought-after relationships within the community to build a thriving volunteer network and help develop programming and protocols that can be referenced and built-upon in future years.
 

Position Responsibilities:

 
·       Under guidance of supervisor, will be responsible for making initial introductions, setting up meetings, and meeting with new and existing partners and community groups.
·       Developing written byproducts of projects they are involved with, including: a brochure and/or manual for river concessionaire training; a digital or physical worksheet for CO site stewards; 1-page briefs on volunteer projects they assist in coordinating or implementing; and social media content.
·       Digitizing museum collections and research publications
·       Assisting in field-based community engagement and volunteer projects
·      Orally present project findings to staff, partners, and public
 

CVA Minimum Requirements:

 
·       Participate in the CVA National Early Service Training in fall/winter 2022/2023
·       Be a U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident
·       Be 18-30 years old at time of service (veterans up to 35 years old)
·       Must possess a strong interest in resource stewardship and science communication
·       Education: High School diploma/GED required
·       Submit proof of a Driver’s License and undergo a Federal Background Check, upon selection
·       US Citizen, or Lawful Permanent Resident Alien of the United States
 

Preferred Qualifications:

 
·       Previous coursework in the social and natural sciences (including course areas such as archaeology, anthropology, Native American studies, history, environmental studies, geology, biological sciences, geography, etc.)
·       Pursuing or attained Bachelor’s degree in a social or natural science field
·       Strong writing skills
·       Strong attention to detail
·       Experience using Microsoft Office (Word, Excel, Powerpoint)
·       Able to hike short to medium distances (up to 2 miles) over easy to moderate terrain
·       Prior experience engaging public on resource stewardship or science-related projects
·      Public speaking experience is not required, but openness to try is expected
 

Additional Information:

 
Park housing is provided at no cost to the participant in either a 3-bedroom HVAC house furnished as a dormitory (with 2-5 roommates) or a studio apartment, depending on seasonal availability. Housing includes all amenities (air conditioning, heating, stove, utensils, pots, pans, refrigerator, washer and dryer, bathroom with shower, wifi, etc.). Efforts are made to provide interns with their own room, but depending on park staffing and availability, dormitory rooms may need to be shared (2 persons/room, no mixed sexes). Housing is in the park housing area of the Green River District (Jensen, Utah) so intern will be in the community of permanent and seasonal staff. House is located 50 yards from Green River Resource Center where intern will spend half of time. Other office location is in Dinosaur, CO, an approximately 30-minute drive from housing. Intern will need to bring all personal items including toiletries, pillows, and linens. The nearest town with amenities is Vernal, Utah, located approximately 25 miles west of the park. A government vehicle is available for work-related driving (to headquarters office, field visits with supervisor, etc.), but individual will need a personal vehicle for any travel needs during off-work hours.
 
The participant will occasionally work among a peer group of other interns, providing an opportunity to collaborate on projects. Additionally, intern will have opportunity to interact with staff from other Monument programs, such as the Fire Program, Interpretation & Education Program, and Law Enforcement Program, to assist with project planning and implementation. The monument’s Resource Stewardship and Science program has many interactions with nearby federal and state agencies, universities, and museums, which will offer the intern additional opportunities for networking. CVA will also work with local river concessionaire groups and tribal stakeholders for community outreach initiatives.
 
In addition to networking opportunities and housing, CVA will have opportunity to engage in fieldwork, such as river-based research and volunteer trips, during their time at the monument.

Benefits:

 
·       CVA will receive a weekly stipend of $500 (additional $65/week, if housing is not provided)
·       Housing provided
·       Limited health care/childcare benefits
·       The position is eligible for an AmeriCorps Education Award $6,345.00 (pre-tax) upon successful completion of the program
·       Professional development funds
·       Networking opportunities within the National Park Service and partnering organizations
·       Public Land Corps Hiring Authority
 

How to Apply

The CVA position will start on Monday, September 12th, 2022, and run for 50 weeks until Friday, August 25th 2023. Applicants will need to apply here: CVA Member Application 2022-2023 (September  Cohort) (jotform.com)and attach a cover.
 
Please ensure your cover letter addresses the specific requirements and position details for this park.

You may submit one application for multiple positions by selecting all sites and attaching the necessary cover letters.
 

Applications Deadline

 
Please submit your application by Friday, July 15th to ensure full consideration.


For Application Questions:

Please contact Geoff Elliot, Program Director at gelliot@conservationlegacy.org
 
Stewards Individual Placements Program does not and will not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, gender, gender expression, age, national origin, disability, marital status, sexual orientation, or military status, in any of its activities or operations. We are committed to providing an inclusive and welcoming environment for all.