American Conservation Experience - EPIC & CORPS
  • Bureau of Land Management
  • Ridgecrest, CA, USA
  • Internship
  • EPIC

Summary: American Conservation Experience, a nonprofit conservation corps, in partnership with the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), California State Office, is seeking 2 Resource Inventory Team Members  to inventory BLM lands to determine if they possess qualities of wilderness character to inform Land Use Planning efforts with throughout the state of California.

This opportunity is intended for enthusiastic young professionals with a deep interest in advancing their career goals in natural resources management, ecology, environmental science, conservation and related fields.


Start Date: Early January 2020

End Date: Mid July

*A minimum 27-week commitment is required*

Location: This is a roving position throughout California. Time will be split between El Centro, CA, Barstow, CA and Susanville, CA. More details available during interviews.

Housing: Is provided. ACE interns will be accommodated at no cost for the duration of the internship. Camping may be required throughout term of service as needed**.  

** ACE will provide group camping gear. Interns are welcome to provide their own gear if desired. 

Living Allowance: ACE Member is expected to contribute ~40 hours/week and will receive a living allowance of $500/week to cover the costs of food and incidental expenses, dispersed bi-weekly.

AmeriCorps: This position may be eligible for a 900-hour AmeriCorps Education Award ($2960.00) upon successful completion of internship service hours. Additional enrollment is required.

Project Background/Description: The team will inventory BLM lands to determine if they possess qualities of wilderness character to inform Land Use Planning efforts with throughout the state of California. This work does not entail decision making. Through the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) process the BLM will use this inventory in conjunction with other information to inform decisions concerning lands the BLM will continue to manage for wilderness characteristics as well as for other concurrent multiple uses. All decisions about managing wilderness characteristics will stem from subsequent public planning processes.

While this position requires extensive field expertise the average work week is 50/50 Office work and Field work (office work may be required to be done remotely). The majority of the workload will consist of data processing and drafting technical reports. Participants should be enthusiastic about this aspect of the job as well as data collection in the field. Data collection sites are often located in remote locations and require driving long distance and navigating difficult dirt roads. Furthermore, while data collection can require remote multi-day backpacking trips, significant portions of data is collected from within a vehicle, while driving the perimeters of the inventory units. Work sites are located at a significant distant from the base field offices, so strong ability to work independently and with a small team is mandatory. 


Six principal tasks constitute the scope of work for this project:

  1. Consult with Field Office staff to obtain local knowledge about lands known to contain or have the potential to contain wilderness characteristics and other supplemental values (e.g., ecological, geological, scientific, educational, scenic, historical)
  1. GIS analysis and ground truth to determine whether the extent and boundaries of lands with wilderness characteristics in the existing inventory remain valid or merit revaluation
  2. GIS analysis and ground truth to assess BLM proposed additions and changes proposed by citizens to the extent and boundaries of lands with wilderness characteristics
  3. On-the-ground validation of proposed changes for an individual area where changes in extents and boundaries for the area amount to greater than one square mile (= 2.59 km2)
  4. Draft Lands with Wilderness Inventory findings for review by BLM lead and prepare for final review and signature by the Field Manager.
  5. Document findings in permanent paper and electronic files, using data standards and forms established in BLM Manual 6310, the map results of GIS analysis algorithms, narratives from field notes, and photographs supporting inclusion of existing and proposed lands with the wilderness characteristics.

Interns will use a provided iPad to collect field data. iPad's and related gear provided by the BLM and ACE. Team will be responsible for being in communication with the Field Office and ACE.

Qualifications: Applicants must have a degree in natural resource management, environmental science, ecology, GIS, fisheries and wildlife management, biology or other related disciplines appropriate to the position. A combination of relevant education and appropriate experience is also acceptable. Resumes must contain enough information to show that the applicant meets the experience as defined in the internship announcement.  We are looking for determined, strong and developing natural resource managers who are looking for experience working with land management agencies. 

Required Skills:

  • Internship is available to US Citizens and Green Card holders only;
  • Intern must be between the age of 18 and 30. 
  • A valid driver's license, clean driving record, and ability to provide such documentation; Driving Record check will be completed during on-boarding process. Interns are required to drive for this position. If unable to drive (age/record limitation), please contact our staff listed before to discuss. 
  • Ability and willingness to undergo a Federal criminal background check;
  • Strong leadership skills and equally strong team player;
  • Experience working in a small teams;
  • Effective communication skills with staff, colleagues, and the public;
  • Able and willing to work outdoors in varying weather conditions and capable of participating in sustained physical labor;
  • Experience in backcountry hiking and navigation in steep terrain;
  • Interest and ability to work in remote field areas;
  • Personal medical insurance for the duration of their participation with ACE;
  • Physical strength to walk long distances (>20km) in one day through harsh desert environments
  • Must be 21-35 years of age (Fellows must be 21-35 to apply for any ACE position that requires or anticipates operation of agency or ACE vehicles for duties.)
  • U.S. Citizen or Permanent Resident
  • A valid driver's license and an insurable driving record (documentation to be provided upon request)
  • Willing to undergo and must pass a federal criminal background check
  • Willing to be drug free throughout position term.  ACE is a federal contractor and grantee and is therefore required by law to maintain a drug free workplace.  ACE and partner housing is also drug free. As a federal contractor, ACE is subject to Federal law regarding controlled substances such marijuana. Federal law supersedes State law therefore the use of marijuana and other controlled substances is illegal and is not allowed at any time during position term, regardless of State law or qualified medical marijuana card status.  ACE reserves the right to drug test at any time.

Highly Preferred Skills

  • Professional or research experience using ArcGIS Software;
  • Mapping and Cartographic skills;
  • Map and Compass as well as GPS off trail navigation skills;
  • Experience using GPS units, tablets, and other digital data collection means;
  • Experience in photography (photo editing/Google Earth skills);
  • Mental endurance and good judgment to work in strenuous conditions;
  • Risk Management Mindset
  • Off-Road Driving experience
  • Adaptability and problem solving skills
  • Ability to work independently and as a contributing member of a small team working in close proximity for an extended time.
  • Current Wilderness First Responder or higher
  • Strong desire to enter the conservation field as a natural resource professional;

**Details subject to change as anytime**

To Apply: Please submit your resume, thoughtful cover letter, and three professional/academic references using the APPLY NOW link.

If you have any questions regarding this internship opportunity, please contact the ACE EPIC BLM Recruitment Specialist, Erin Mounce at 385-266-7483 or

EOE: American Conservation Experience provides equal employment opportunities (EEO) to all employees and applicants for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability or genetics. In addition to federal law requirements, American Conservation Experience complies with applicable state and local laws governing non-discrimination in employment in every location in which the company has facilities.

American Conservation Experience - EPIC & CORPS
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