Indigenous Conservation Corps Crew Member
Title: Indigenous Conservation Corps (Summer 2023)
Location: Cherokee, NC
Start Date: 6/5/2022
End Date: 7/28/2022
Pay: $600 per week, paid bi-weekly + AmeriCorps Segal Education Money Award
Status: This is a full-time, seasonal 300 hour AmeriCorps National Service position.
Questions? Contact: CCNCrecruiting@conservationlegacy.org
Conservation Corps North Carolina:
The mission of Conservation Corps North Carolina (CCNC) is to empower young adults through meaningful outdoor work that benefits North Carolina’s land and water and creates healthy communities.
CCNC is a program of Conservation Legacy that partners with public land managers in North Carolina to engage motivated young adults (ages 18-30, or 35 if a veteran) to complete challenging and impactful conservation service projects throughout the region. Projects may include trail construction & maintenance, habitat improvement, hazard fuel reduction, and ecological restoration. Crews may also complete technical and/or specialized projects depending on project partner needs, including disaster relief if the opportunity arises.
Projects take place across southwest North Carolina, including work with the USDA Forest Service and the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians (EBCI) Tribe. Seven of the eight-week program are a day schedule, meaning the crew returns home at end of work hours. One week of this program may be an overnight/camping week, equipment such as tents and sleeping bags will be provided as needed. During their time in the field, Crew Members work outdoors in all types of weather conditions, performing manual labor related to environmental conservation and restoration projects. These hands-on projects include public access improvements, trail construction and maintenance, forest management, habitat restoration, invasive species treatments, heritage work related to ancestral lands, disaster relief, fire & fuels reduction, and much more. The focus of this program is to equip crew members with job skills related to conservation. Crew members will also receive cultural enrichment through learning Tribal management practices and history related to natural resources. Most projects require hiking out to remote work sites for the day with tools, equipment, and day pack.
Schedule and Crew Life:
The Indigenous Conservation Corp crews consist of 3-5 EBCI crew members and 1 crew leader who provide project expertise, mentorship, training, and support for the success of all participants. Participants must be members of the EBCI Tribe. The crew will typically meet in Cherokee, NC. Transportation from Cherokee, NC will be considered on a case-by-case basis. Crews will work on a daily schedule, working ten-hour days with three days off per week. The day starts with a stretch circle and safety meeting and includes two fifteen-minute breaks and a half hour break for lunch. The final week will be a camping/overnight project.
When on overnight projects, crews work together to plan meals and complete all necessary chores (cooking, washing dishes, etc). We are able to accommodate most dietary restrictions. Camp chores will be completed every evening, with many evenings including group discussions on conservation topics.
CCNC supports a culture of feedback and growth. Crew Members will set goals at the beginning of the season and review their performance through both self-evaluation and a review with their Crew Leader in the middle and at the end of their season. Evaluations will cover topic areas including Professionalism, Responsibility/Leadership/Communication, Community Engagement, Project Work, Safety & Organization, and Equipment. Crew Members will also be asked to evaluate their Crew Leaders’ performance, the overall program, and their experience at the end of their term.
CCNC is an independent, non-residential program. Crew Members are responsible for their own housing, food, and transportation when not in the field unless otherwise specified. Some equipment is available to borrow throughout the season, but Crew Members are asked to supply as much of their own personal outdoor gear (tent, sleeping bag, sleeping pad, day pack, multi-day pack, work pants, hiking/work boots, etc) as possible. A gear list is provided upon acceptance into the program. In addition to providing food while in the field, CCNC will provide group camp equipment, tools, protective gear, and transportation between Cherokee, NC and project sites.
Crew Members are asked to work hard, stay positive, and be flexible with changing schedules, weather conditions, and project needs. This is a seasonal position; Crew Members are asked to fully commit to the experience, expectations, and timeline.
Once Crew Members are selected and prior to their start date, they are required to complete an online enrollment process that includes completing e-forms, uploading IDs, enrolling with AmeriCorps, and beginning their background check process. For those with limited access to online platforms, accommodations may be available and can be discussed during the interview process.
Members may receive recertification and training in USFS Chainsaw (S212), Wilderness First Aid, USFS Crosscut, Red Card (S130/S190).
- $600/week living stipend, paid bi-weekly
- Accrue hours towards the Public Land Corps Certificate that offers a hiring authority when applying for future federal positions
- AmeriCorps Segal Education Award upon successful completion of service term (award amount varies based on length of commitment and can be used for paying off federal student loans or paying tuition for a Title IV accredited college)
- Members may be eligible for student loan forbearance
- Member Assistance Program – 3 free sessions of support with a counseling or work-life balance specialist
- Uniform shirts, helmet, work gloves, eye protection, and other necessary safety equipment is provided
- On-the-job training provided!
- Assistance may be available for getting Crew Members the outdoor gear needed to participate
- Depending upon the academic institution and program, Crew Member positions may fulfill internship requirements
- Professional development opportunities (mentorship, resume support, alumni listserv, etc)
- Exposure to natural resource career paths and opportunities
- Be between the ages of 18 and 30 (exception for Veterans up to age 35)
- Have US Citizenship or Legal Permanent Residency status
- Have a high school diploma or GED
- Pass background checks: all offers of positions are conditional upon completion of an acceptable check of the National Sex Offender Public Registry and Federal and/or State criminal background check
- Must be eligible to receive an AmeriCorps Education Award (individuals are eligible if they have not already completed 2 full years of AmeriCorps service, or 4 AmeriCorps service terms, whichever comes first – please contact us if you are unsure of your eligibility)
- No previous experience is required, but a general comfort and previous knowledge of working/living in an outdoor setting is helpful.
Participant Essential Eligibility Requirements
Essential eligibility requirements for the program must be met. If you are unable to meet certain requirements, we may be able to assist you with some modification unless it alters the fundamental nature of the program, compromises the health and safety of participants or staff, or places an undue financial or administrative burden on the organization. These requirements are written the same for all positions and therefore may not apply directly to your particular position.
Participation and Expedition Behavior:
- Work effectively as a member of a team despite potentially stressful and difficult conditions. This may require problem solving on an interpersonal or group level as well as a willingness to accept differences.
- Contribute to a safe learning environment; no harassment of others for any reason.
- Willingness and ability to complete all aspects of the program including conservation projects, education, training and national service. Members must commit to participating in all crew/team activities, including service days in local communities where applicable.
- Effectively communicate ideas and concerns as they arise directly to supervisors, colleagues and organization staff.
- Have the cognitive ability to learn necessary skills and apply them to effectively carry out the service work requirements
- Appropriately represent the Program and AmeriCorps to the public and project partners at all times.
Safety and Judgment:
- Effectively communicate danger to others in the form of either a warning or a notification of personal distress, injury or need for assistance. You must be able to do so at a distance of up to 50 meters and in conditions with limited visibility or loud background noise such as darkness or high winds.
- Effectively perceive, understand and follow directions by others so that you will be able to successfully execute appropriate and perhaps unfamiliar techniques to manage hazards. These directions may be given before the hazard is encountered or may need to be given during exposure to the hazard.
- Stay alert and focused for several hours at a time while traveling and working in varied weather conditions
- Perceive and comprehend significant and apparent hazards, including those hazards previously identified by others.
- Respond appropriately to stress or crises.
- If taking prescription medications, participants must be able to maintain proper dosage by self-medicating without assistance from others.
- Learn and practice ‘Leave no Trace’ techniques
- Outdoor Skills and Fitness (where appropriate)
- Learn and safely perform fundamental outdoor living/travel and work skills as appropriate to the project. Additionally, remain adequately hydrated, fed, and properly dressed so as to remain generally healthy and safe, avoiding environmental injuries.
- Live in a physically demanding, possibly remote environment for an uninterrupted period of up to several weeks. Conditions of this environment may vary significantly and may include severe and/or trying weather. The remoteness is such that it may require at a minimum one hour, but perhaps in excess of 12 hours, to reach the nearest advanced medical care.
- In accordance with a drug free workplace, alcohol and drugs are prohibited while participating in AmeriCorps and program activities and while on organization property.
This position is located in Cherokee. View the Google Map in full screen.