American Conservation Experience - EPIC & CORPS
  • Pacific West Region
  • SF, CA, USA
  • $228.57/week
  • Other
  • Corps Member

Housing, meals on project days, 450 Hour Segal Education Award, living stipend, transport to projects, tents, uniforms

American Conservation Experience Pacific West

Summer 2018 Central Region

Summary:  American Conservation Experience is a Non-Profit Conservation Corps currently seeking energetic, ambitious young adults to participate as AmeriCorps members in a 14-week environmental conservation crew program. Our mission is to introduce and prepare corps members for careers in resource management with ACE, with other conservation corps, or with public agencies such as the National Park Service, US Forest Service, US Fish and Wildlife, CA State Parks, or the Bureau of Land Management, among others.


ACE is seeking corps members for a summer AmeriCorps Quarter Time (QT450 hour) term in 2018, in our Central Regional Headquarters of ACE Pacific West, based in Santa Cruz County, CA.


Start Date: June 18th, 2018*                           End Date: September 22nd, 2018

*A 450-hour, 14-week commitment is required.  An early arrival of 6/14 or 6/15 would be expected for out-of-state members to initiate and clear CA state criminal history checks. There may be opportunities available to continue with ACE after the 14-week period for the best performing crew members. Extensions to service are also dependent on available projects in the field and seasonal constraints.

Position Description:  AmeriCorps Members in the ACE Conservation Corps program will spend just over 3 months learning techniques of conservation and land management while training on complex trail construction projects under the guidance of ACE's most highly skilled staff members. National service in this capacity is offered as an immersive, hands-on opportunity to earn significant universal trail building principles and technical rockwork and engineering in collaboration with our public land management partners. The goal of the position is to accomplish meaningful project work for agencies such as the CA State Parks in order to improve and provide safe public access to wilderness locations. Trail building, re-routes, and general maintenance also is taking place to protect sensitive wildlife habitats or vegetation in these areas.

AmeriCorps Members will also gain leadership skills while working on a team and maintaining strong awareness of safety principles both on and off projects. All work is physically demanding, often requiring stints in the backcountry and/or extended stays in the field.   This position requires hiking, backpacking, camping and cooking outdoors while at front country and wilderness spike camps.  Members will also be expected to serve as ambassadors of ACE and citizens of their local community by coordinating one volunteer event (Volunteer Service Project VSP), recruiting a minimum of ten members of the local community to participate in a volunteer day alongside ACE members or with local residents for the common good.        


Location:  Field projects will take place at various locations throughout Central California during the summer of 2018, with a majority of work on the Sonoma Overlook Trail, as well as other CA State Park locations like Garrapta State Park, Sinkyone Wilderness State Park, and/or Point Lobos State Park. We anticipate that all corps members will arrive, depart, and be based in our Central housing locations (Santa Cruz and Boulder Creek), and be participating in projects based regionally. ACE will provide all work-related transportation to your field projects.  All participants must be flexible and willing to be assigned to a variety of locations and for multiple agencies, wherever community need is the highest.  ACE is asked to complete various project assignments and timelines that in range length from one week to more than one month+, so members may experience a range of opportunities during their three-month term. Long-term project assignments are necessary to extend advanced training to crew members, as well as invest your skills and commitment to see a project through to completion. Crew members' project schedule is comprised of multiple short-term 'hitches' on average 4-11 days long. Members return to the same project until completion, and/or to other projects in motion. Flexibility is necessary for locations during days-off, and will most often be spent in our Central Regional housing or potentially time-off on project sites themselves. ACE provides a schedule to active members clearly detailing your service days, days off, location, and more.


Financial Benefits:

AmeriCorps Members at ACE California receive a living allowance of $3,200 (before tax) for 450 hours of service, spread evenly over the 14-week period. The living allowance calculates to $228.57 per week before taxes & housing deduction ($228.57 = $3200 divided by 14 weeks). This is a gross amount before taxes, and the standard amount of state and federal income taxes/withholdings may be applied by law. Members pay $25.00/week for ACE housing expenses on off-days in Central CA regional housing as an automatic deduction from the living allowance.

Upon successful completion of the program, members receive a Quarter-Time Segal Education Award of $1,566.14 to be used to pay future tuition or existing federal student loans. More information regarding amount and eligibility, see the AmeriCorps website.   Food is provided on project days, and housing (volunteer housing, tents, limited facilities) is included both on and off projects. 


Qualifications:  AmeriCorps members serving with ACE should have an established interest in conservation issues and should take joy in tackling challenging situations with a positive mindset.  Applicants must be willing to undertake arduous physical work in all types of weather and terrain, and to participate as a team member dedicated to ACE's mission.   ACE's Conservation Corps program is meant as a stepping stone to environmental careers and as a gateway to potential advancement within ACE, not only as an interesting and rewarding way to spend several weeks working in beautiful locations.  Drug users, including users of marijuana, should not consider applying as ACE reserves the right to require drug testing and absolutely abhors the presence of drug users in our program. ACE intends to be a positive influence and intends to create safe and healthy environments for our members. The culture of alcohol and tobacco use is also restricted from ACE property and not supported by our mission of professionalism and personal development.

Other Requirements: 

  • Program is available to US Citizens and Green Card holders only.
  • Members must have personal medical insurance for the duration of their participation with ACE.
  • To prove eligibility and citizenship, members must be able to provide ORIGINALS of the following documents: 1) Social Security card, 2) Passport OR- Birth certificate, 3) Photo ID (passport, driver's license, military license, or student ID)
  • ACE will provide tents to all Members (upon request) but all other camping items such as sturdy boots, sleeping bags, backpacks, and raingear must be provided by the applicant.
  • Due to fire hazard conditions in ACE (specifically in California), smoking will not be permitted at any work site. Additionally, smoking will not be permitted when spiked at undeveloped campgrounds or when serving backcountry. Smoking may be permitted at ACE housing but will be restricted to designated areas.
  • This position is an AmeriCorps "covered position" and will require a heightened criminal history check.Applicants are required to disclose any criminal history record and consent to a three-part Criminal History Check. The position with ACE will be considered conditional until all checks return and are fully reviewed. There are certain criminal convictions that make applicants ineligible for service with AmeriCorps and/or ACE. If you would like further clarification on this please ask as part of the application process.


Age: AmeriCorps guidelines require 18-25 of age, however ACE as the host organization has the discretion to set age guidelines, and we do not have an upper age limit.


Training:  Trainings may include a variety of technical project and outdoor skills such as habitat restoration, trail construction/maintenance, retaining wall construction, rock step construction, rock drilling, setting up rigging systems, tread and switchback construction, installing water bars, check dams and other erosion control devices. Practical work and environmental training abound, we encourage the growth of our short-term corps members to continue and develop to eventually be present for future certifications that become available with an extended commitment. Membership spanning several seasons allows for additional training opportunities.


Positions open until filled, but are in high demand.  Apply now!


To Apply: Fill in your basic information and click "APPLY FOR THIS POSITION" located on the upper right hand corner of the position listing above or find on our website here:  

 Upload all requested documents including your motivation statement, resume, and 3 professional references. Rather than a traditional cover letter, please include a motivation statement which sincerely describes your interests, skills, professional goals, and any other relevant information in regards to this opportunity. This is your opportunity to stand out and express why you are a great fit for our program, in your own words.

NOTE: Early consideration will be given as applications are received. This position may close at any time, and is open until filled. If you have any questions regarding this position, please feel free to contact the California Outreach Coordinator, Marcel Coppolino at 928-814-3191 or

Also, consider checking out our Facebook page and social media for more details about ACE!


In accordance with Federal law and U.S. Department of Agriculture policy, this institution is prohibited from discriminating on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, age or disability. (Not all prohibited bases apply to all programs.)  To file a complaint of discrimination: write USDA, Director, Office of Civil Rights, Room 326-W, Whitten Building, 1400 Independence Avenue, SW, Washington, D.C. 20250-9410 or call (202) 720-5964 (voice and TDD). USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer.

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American Conservation Experience - EPIC & CORPS
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