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Terrestrial Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR) Monitoring Program Intern – Florida/Georgia


Individual Placement/Internships

Job Location

Chiefland, Florida

Tracking Code


Position Type


Position Title: Terrestrial Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR) Monitoring Program Intern – Florida/Georgia 

Reports To: USFWS Southeast Terrestrial LiDAR Scanning Coordinator  

Position Type: Seasonal, Full-Time, Exempt 

Service Term Length: Term of position is 20 weeks; full-time 40 hours weekly with potential for an extension 

Living Allowance: $600 /week 

AmeriCorps Award: Position is eligible for an 675-hour AmeriCorps Segal education award upon successful completion of the program. Value of education award is $2,626.27 pre-tax 

Other Benefits: Housing provided at no cost, stipend for field gear available 

Start Date/End Date: May 20, 2024 – October 04,2024 (Subject to change based upon location) 

Positions Available: 2 

Position Details 

Stewards Individual Placements provide individuals with service and career opportunities to strengthen communities and preserve our natural resources. The LiDAR Monitoring Program Interns, an AmeriCorps Individual Placement position, serve with the United States Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) and two (2) positions are available in Florida/Georgia.  Interns will be expected to travel to a different state when necessary.   


 The Terrestrial LiDAR Monitoring Program utilizes the latest technology in forest vegetation surveying and monitoring.  Working as a team, individuals will use terrestrial Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR) based forest vegetation surveying/monitoring to gather data to inform land management on refuges, specifically fuel loading changes over time with respect to wildland fire, forestry, and botany. Interns will be working largely unsupervised using LiDAR equipment to collect field data and then post process that data into a format that will be utilized by decision makers. Interns will be working directly with multiple external and internal partners. They should be willing to discuss complex ecosystems and technology, along with the protocols for managing those ecosystems and the technology.   

To learn more about this type of internship from our 2023 LiDAR Monitoring Technician interns, Click here!

Position Responsibilities 

This position will involve Terrestrial LiDAR Scanning (TLS) of forest vegetation to inform management on refuges, specifically fuel load changes over time with respect to wildland fire, forestry, and botany. Field work will consist of collecting forest inventory, vegetation, and geospatial data and establishing/maintaining long-term experimental plots. Office work will include data entry, quality assurance, and elementary processing of LiDAR and geospatial data. Interns will be working largely unsupervised with LiDAR equipment collecting field data and then post processing that data into a form that will be utilized by decision makers.  

The interns will be required to communicate with USFWS staff. This position is on a team of two, but everyone on the team must be self-motivated and able to effectively work independently.  Interns will have an abundance of support both on-site and virtually, during work hours. On-site, the interns will have assistance from the refuge staff. There will also be numerous USFWS employees that will be accessible at any time by phone.  

Interns must have the ability to safely traverse difficult terrain, often in adverse weather conditions and in remote areas while carrying equipment. Field work will involve exposure to hazards such as venomous snakes, heat, humidity, and insects. Individuals must be able to and willing to follow field protocols. Interns will be working in teams of two to complete tasks. These teams will also be living in close quarters in the refuge housing. Verbal, and nonverbal communication, the ability to handle conflict, teamwork, empathy, listening, and a positive attitude are keys to success. 

The position will begin with a week of training during which the purpose of the monitoring will be explained, and the protocol taught. Interns will be required to attend weekly calls to check-in with the supervisor. Field tasks include navigating to plots, collecting vegetative and forest structure data, and utilizing terrestrial LiDAR equipment. There will also be some post processing of the LiDAR files required, estimated to require two hours of indoor work weekly.  


The standard workweek is 40 hours Monday-Friday, with the possibility of occasional weekend shifts. Due to the nature of field work, interns can set their own daily start and end times, as long as site-staff would be available to support in case of emergency. As this is outdoor work in the South, days will likely have to begin early to avoid unsafe heat conditions and interns must be willing to be flexible and adjust their schedule around inclement weather.  

Position Location 

• Lower Suwannee NWR (Florida) and Okefenokee NWR (Georgia) 

There will be travel to more than the listed refuges as time progresses.  

Minimum Requirements 

• Possession of a valid driver’s license and ability to safely operate a vehicle.  

• Must have an understanding of utilizing GIS/GPS systems. 

• Should be familiar with forest or biological survey protocols (such as timber cruising) 

• Must be able to conduct field work involving hiking and carrying equipment 

Knowledge, Skills, & Abilities 

• Knowledge of natural resources/ecology/forest management/wildlife management/forest resource inventory/biological surveying 

• Skill in using GPS, survey software, and related instruments for field measurements 

• Ability to hike with equipment for several miles within a day, in varying degrees of trail difficulty, in remote and/or challenging terrain in various and potentially adverse weather conditions 

• Ability for independent planning, data organization, record-keeping, and resourcefulness in the absence of on-site supervision 

• Ability to follow written and verbal instructions from supervisors and co-workers 

• Ability to communicate effectively – both written and orally with supervisors, co-workers, division personnel, and occasionally with public interaction. 

• Ability to complete tasks within designated timeframes 

• Ability to navigate remote settings with maps, written directions, and/or GPS. 

Communications/Interpersonal Contacts 

The position requires excellent proficiency of the English language and the ability to convey information orally, clearly, and concisely whether verbal or written. Interns must be able to present information in required formats and present written summaries and reports of results. Position requires manipulation of information, data, and the use of but not limited to Microsoft Word, Excel, database software, and ArcGIS. Position may present the opportunity to display data and themes in maps and visual displays. These teams will also be living in close quarters in the refuge housing, so interpersonal skills, communication, and problem-solving skills will be very important to maintain. Verbal and nonverbal communication, the ability to handle conflict, teamwork, empathy, listening, and a positive attitude are keys to success. 

Working Conditions/Physical Effort 

The Terrestrial LiDAR Monitoring Project Interns may work in variable weather conditions, at remote locations, on varying terrain and potentially under physically demanding circumstances.  

These conditions: 

• Present the possibility of injury and exposure to hazards such as venomous snakes, heat, humidity, and insects.  

• Require long hours in isolated settings 

• Require physical exertion, outdoors, in all weather conditions on potentially difficult or hazardous terrain 

• Require the ability to occasionally use hand tools and/or light machinery 

• Require the willingness to travel frequently, work varying shifts, and potentially overnight stays. 


• Position is eligible for an AmeriCorps education award upon successful completion of the program. Value of education award is $2,626.27(pre-tax). 

• Living Allowance: $600/week (pre-tax) 

• Housing provided on site 

• Stipend provided for field gear (ex. Boots, pants) 

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. 


Additional Notes: 

All applicants must pass a criminal background and motor vehicle background check prior to hiring.  


This program is available to all, without regard to race, color, national origin, gender, age, religion, sexual orientation, disability, gender identity or expression, political affiliation, marital or parental status, genetic information, and military service. Where a significant portion of the population eligible to be served needs services or information in a language other than English, the recipient shall take reasonable steps to provide written material of the type ordinarily available to the public in appropriate languages.    

To Apply:  

In addition to your resume and 3 references, please submit a one-page cover letter highlighting why you are interested in this position and how your background and experience will help you succeed in this position. 


If you have questions about the position, please contact:  

Emily Link 

Fire Ecologist 

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service 



If you have questions about the application process, please contact:  

Kahla Stewart 

Program Coordinator  

Stewards Individual Placements/Southeast Conservation Corps

(423) 402-6004 


This position is located in Chiefland, FL. View the Google Map in full screen.