American Conservation Experience - EPIC & CORPS
  • National Park Service
  • Flat Rock, NC, USA
  • $480/ Week
  • Other
  • Internship
  • EPIC

Summary: American Conservation Experience, a nonprofit youth conservation corps, in partnership with the National Park Service at Carl Sandburg Home National Historic Site (CARL) in western North Carolina is seeking ONE Natural Resources Intern for a 10 week position with ACE and the National Park Service working in the natural resource program. The interns will work directly with the park staff to gain experience in a variety of conservation related activities.


Start Date: June 3, 2019 (some flexibility for the right candidate)

End Date: August 12, 2019   

* A 10-week minimum commitment is required *


Location: Carl Sandburg National Historic Site, Flat Rock, NC


Compensation: The intern will receive a living allowance of $480 per week. Park housing is not available. Interns must find lodging locally at their own cost.


Project Partner Website: To Learn more about CARL, please visit the NPS website at: For more information regarding the ACE Internship Program (EPIC), please visit the website


Project Summary:

Project will include surveying for non-native invasive species on rock outcrops and other forested sites that have been previously surveyed and identified as exotic species sites. Where invasive species are found, removal will be done through employment of various IPM activities, including hand removal and herbicide applications. Additionally, collection of field data for a range of natural resources will be conducted with the intern's assistance. These activities may include setting and monitoring wildlife cameras and bat acoustics recording devices (i.e. bats, coyotes, others), surveying for Galax locations and population density, setting monitoring traps in collaboration with US Forest Service, and assisting with administration of the park's Citizen Science Program.    


Project Goals:  

This project will result in cyclic control of non-native species invading a globally rare plant community. It will also support condition assessments of specified park natural resources, and a citizen science program.  


The primary goal of this project is to complete survey, inspection, and removal of non-native species on all granitic dome rock outcrops in CARL during a ten week timeframe this summer. Secondary to that, adjacent sites will be surveyed, and exotic species control measures applied, as these sites lend to replenishment of non-native seed bank on the rock domes.


Project Objectives:  

  • Up to twenty-one granitic domes will be revisited and inspected for presence of non-native vegetative species.
  • All non-native species identified on the domes will be removed through appropriate means.
  • Locations of non-native species and control activities will be recorded for each dome.
  • ACE interns will receive pesticide handling safety training and species identification training during orientation period.
  • Wildlife cameras and sound recording devices will be set in select areas to monitor wildlife activity of concern to CARL management.
  • Previously mapped sites of Galax will be located and populations assessed.
  • ACE interns will lend support to the citizen science program by training new citizen science volunteers on proper data collection (observation) methods, and assisting with data entry.


Project Tasks:

  • The cooperator will recruit two interns to provide skilled support to the CARL natural resource manager. The interns must have an interest in plant communities and a basic knowledge of non-native or exotic species common to southeastern US. Preferably, the interns will have experience in performing weed management activities and have received prior pesticide training and/or application experience. Interns must be physically able to handle the demands of the work: though many sites are easily accessible because they are adjacent to trails, some work is performed off-trail and requires navigation through rhododendron thickets, climbing up-and-down steep slopes, and collecting GPS points. Interns may carry or drag up to 30 pounds of weed debris or carry 30 pounds of mixed chemical in a backpack sprayer. Interns must be willing to trudge through forest and spend hours in the sun performing work activities. Interns should be organized, team-motivated, and agreeable to occasional office work (i.e. data entry, assist with records management).
  • Interns will be led by CARL staff in this project.
  • CARL staff will provide training for pesticide safety and use, plant identification, and ATV operation.
  • NR manager will accompany interns to field locations and provide guidance initially and as needed.
  • All field supplies will be provided by CARL.


Educational and Recreational Opportunities: The intern is encouraged to explore the surrounding public lands to become a better source of area information.

Opportunities may be possible for working with other park divisions, including resource management, in order to learn more about potential careers.


Personal Vehicle:  Grocery stores, banks, pharmacies, libraries, and other infrastructure are spread out by 5 miles or more. Interns must have a driver's license and a personal vehicle for personal commuting purposes.


Qualifications: Applicants for the position will have a minimum of 1 year of college experience in a degree seeking program.  Preferred coursework in biology, botany, ecology, or similar science.  The intern will be resourceful, adaptable, and able to work comfortably alone or in a group.



  • Must be a US Citizen.
  • Must be 18 to 35 years old.
  • Must be able to communicate clearly and concisely with resource professionals within NPS.
  • Must have effective communication skills with diverse audiences; ability to work alone and in a group.
  • Must have a valid driver's license, clean driving record, and ability to provide documentation; personal vehicle required.
  • Deep interest in ecology, history, and respect for nature is critical.
  • Must be able and willing to work outdoors, in varying weather conditions, and capable of participating in physical labor.
  • Ability and willingness to undergo a federal criminal background check is required.



  • Knowledge and skills in the principles natural resource monitoring.
  • A strong demonstrated interest and/or education in the field of natural and cultural resources.
  • Excellent public speaking skills.
  • Bilingual applicants are encouraged and welcome.


The ACE NPS Intern must be willing and able to represent ACE and the NPS in a professional, positive, and enthusiastic manner. Drug users should not consider applying, as ACE reserves the right to require drug testing.


To Apply: Please submit a thoughtful resume and cover letter along with 3 professional references using the APPLY NOW section located on the upper right hand corner of the position listing on our website here:


NOTE: Early consideration will be given as applications are received. This position may close at any time. If you have any questions regarding this position, please feel free to contact the ACE EPIC Outreach and Recruitment Specialist, Dave Hecker at 801.386.1629 or

American Conservation Experience - EPIC & CORPS
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