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Wilderness and Trails Recreation Intern


Individual Placement/Internships

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Title: Wilderness & Trails Recreation Intern (2 Openings)

Start/End Date: May 6 , 2024 – November 8, ,2024 (anticipated)

Term Length: 26 weeks

Stipend: $500/week

Reports To: District Recreation Manager, Gila National Forest Wilderness Recreation District

Location: 3687 NM Hwy 35 N Mimbres, NM 88049

Status: 900-hour AmeriCorps Service Term; full-time; 40 hours/week

Benefits: Housing allowance $200/week; AmeriCorps Education Award $3,447 and Public Lands Corps Certificate* - both with successful completion of the internship


AmeriCorps is the federal agency for national service and volunteerism. AmeriCorps provides opportunities for Americans of all backgrounds to serve their country, address the nation’s most pressing challenges, and improve lives and communities. Environmental stewardship programs help conserve natural habitats, improve energy efficiency, protect clean air and water, and help to mitigate the effects of climate change among other environmental efforts.


Conservation Corps New Mexico (CCNM)

Conservation Corps New Mexico, a program of Conservation Legacy and AmeriCorps partner, aims to continue the legacy of the Civilian Conservation Corps of the 1930's. CCNM is focused on connecting youth, young adults, and recent era military veterans with conservation service work projects on public lands. CCNM operates programs across southern New Mexico and western Texas that engage individuals and strengthen communities through service and conservation. The CCNM Las Cruces office manages the Individual Placement Program.



These Individual Placement Positions are unique development opportunities. Interns are paired with a local supervisor and gain technical, hands-on experience in the work of these organizations or agencies. Site supervisors commit to facilitate career development; provide an introduction to numerous pathways within the conservation field; and create accessible, meaningful, learning opportunities and experiences for interns.


Position Summary:

The Recreation Department of the Wilderness Ranger District manages the developed and dispersed recreation infrastructure and opportunities on 667,000 acres of the Gila National Forest. This infrastructure includes 7 campgrounds, 3 day-use or interpretive sites, and numerous trailheads. The Recreation Department is also responsible for annual and deferred maintenance of over 700 miles of system trails. Most of the district is federally designated wilderness. The Wilderness Recreation Department is the lead manager of the 558,000-acre Gila Wilderness, the first designated wilderness in

the world. The Wilderness Ranger District also shares management of the Aldo Leopold Wilderness with the Black Range Ranger District.

The Gila National Forest works with a robust partner and volunteer contingency within the Gila Wilderness. Due to the remoteness of the Forest most partners are local to the area, with many living within the Forest boundary and personally invested in the work they complete. Interns will help improve capacity to provide timely maintenance of the extensive trail system used by our partners and public as well as provide instrumental support in helping the agency eliminate deferred maintenance. These intern positions will also offer, once trained, a skilled workforce that could help with future agency positions. Since Gila National Forest and specifically the Wilderness Ranger District is within a remote area, recruitment is particularly difficult. The goal would be to outreach these positions to the local community and start to build a skilled local workforce.

The interns will work with the existing Wilderness Ranger District trail crew to accomplish much needed deferred maintenance on system trails affected by large scale fire and floods. Specifically, the interns will work on the proposed Centennial Trail within the Gila Wilderness. This is a 100-mile loop trail honoring the 100-year designation of the Gila Wilderness. In addition, the interns will work with the Forest Service crew to improve multiple trail crossings of the Gila River’s Middle Fork and West Fork impacted by the 2022 floods. Finally, the interns working with Forest Service crews and partner Packing crew will help to package and haul garbage from abandoned campsites within the Wilderness Ranger District.

The interns will have the opportunity to engage and network with other resource departments such as hydrology, wildlife, fisheries, and fire management. There will also be opportunity to work with cultural heritage professionals and biologists while they conduct surveys during the NEPA process for trail reroutes. In addition, interns will be part of a team that inspects outfitter and guide services in the Wilderness and coordination with Special Use professionals will be necessary.

Essential Responsibilities and Functions:

· Assist in the completion of trail maintenance activities in the Wilderness District

o Work with supervisor to learn maintenance techniques for developed and primitive/wilderness trail classes

o Complete identified maintenance projects independently or as a member of a trail crew

o Participate in the identification and planning of additional trail maintenance projects as required

· Assist in the completion of recreation maintenance activities on National Forest Service Trail in the Wilderness District

o Work with supervisor to learn maintenance techniques for developed recreation sites

o Complete identified maintenance projects independently or as a member of a recreation crew

o Participate in the identification and planning of additional recreation maintenance projects as required




Required Skills



Minimum Qualifications:

· Per federal grant requirements, this internship is for young adults between the ages of 18-30 (35 for veterans), inclusive, at the time the individual begins term of service.

· Ability to work in remote environments for up to 8 consecutive days at a time

· Position is physically arduous - ability to hike up to 10 miles in one day, carrying loads in excess of 50lbs

· Individual should be self-sufficient, insofar as their ability to adequately pack and prepare for prolonged assignments in these remote environments

· Ability to work safely and be a contributing member to a team/crew


Preferred Qualifications:

· Manual labor experience

· Hiking/backpacking experience

· Experience working in team settings

· First Aid/CPR, WFA/WFR certified

· Driver’s license



Physical Requirements:

· To successfully perform essential functions, the individual is required to sit, stand, walk, speak, hear, etc. May be required to stoop, kneel, crouch or crawl for significant periods of time and be able to safely lift 50 pounds on a routine basis. He/she must be able to operate office equipment, telephone, and computer and reach with hands and arms.

· Ability to hike and navigate in rough terrain.

· Reasonable accommodation may be made for qualified individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.


Participant Essential Eligibility Requirements/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.

· Effectively communicate ideas and concerns as they arise directly to supervisors, colleagues, and organization staff.

· Appropriately represent Conservation Corps New Mexico, Gila National Forest, and AmeriCorps to the public and partners at all times.

· Flexibility, adaptability, and capacity to work in a fluid, changing work environment.


Safety and Judgment:

· Effectively communicate danger to others in the form of either a warning of danger others may be encountering or a notification of personal distress, injury or need for assistance. 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 and understand significant and apparent hazards and follow direction by others so that you will be able to successfully execute techniques to manage hazards. These directions may be given before the hazard is encountered or may need to be given during the exposure to the hazard. Ability to respond appropriately to stress or crises.

· Stay alert and focused for several hours at a time while traveling and working in varied

weather conditions.

· If taking prescription medications, participants must be able to maintain proper dosage by self- medicating without assistance from others.


Substance Free:

· In accordance with a drug free workplace, alcohol and drugs are prohibited while participating in AmeriCorps and program activities and while on organization property.


Conservation Legacy is an equal opportunity employer. We are committed to hiring a breadth of diverse professionals and encourage members of diverse groups to apply. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, age, national origin, political affiliation, protected veteran status, disability status, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, marital status, genetic information, or any other characteristic protected by law. We also consider qualified applicants regardless of criminal histories, consistent with legal requirements. If you need assistance and/or a reasonable accommodation due to a disability during application or recruiting process, please send a request to the hiring manager.

To Apply: Please submit an updated resume and cover letter along with the online application at . If you have questions, contact CCNM’s Individual Placement Program Director, Joy Hernández, at

For more information about Conservation Corps New Mexico, please visit Conservation Corps New Mexico is a program of Conservation Legacy

This position is located in Mimbres. View the Google Map in full screen.