• Calumet Habitat Restoration Intern

    Job Locations US-IL-Chicago
    Seasonal, Full-Time
    Job Category
    Land Stewardship
  • Overview

    Over the past 25 years, wetland degradation has resulted in significant losses of biodiversity in the Calumet Region. Audubon Great Lakes, a regional office of the National Audubon Society, is leading an effort to galvanize a landscape approach to overcome large-scale challenges facing Calumet Region wetlands. Audubon has specifically targeted hemimarsh habitat restoration in order to benefit marsh birds, other wildlife, water and people. Audubon and partners are now leading restoration at nearly 200 acres of priority Calumet wetlands. Audubon’s Wings internship program invites local community members with an interest in conservation, students, and recent graduates to help shape a healthy environment and vibrant future for birds – and all of us who share the planet with them. The Audubon Great Lakes program is dedicated to building a culturally diverse organization and strongly encourages applications from people of color and women. Audubon is a federal contractor and an Equal Opportunity Employer (EOE).



    Position Summary

    Habitat Restoration Interns play a critical role in the management and restoration in Chicago Park District Natural Areas. This internship is being offered by Audubon and is in partnership with the Chicago Park District to restore ecological health and integrity in prairie, savanna, wetland, and hemimarsh habitats at Indian Ridge Marsh in South Deering, Chicago. This is an excellent opportunity to gain experience in natural areas management and land stewardship, as well as the opportunity to contribute to the growing conservation network in the Calumet area.
    The commitment is a full-time, 40 hours per week, seasonal position that runs from June through October. The 40-hour work week requires commitment to Monday through Friday, 7am-3pm schedule with the flexibility to work occasional weekends to support community outreach and stewardship in the Calumet region. Interns will report to the Stewardship Coordinator and preference will be given to those who commit to the full length of the internship. The internship is physically rigorous and offers interesting, educational, and challenging work outdoors to individuals who are energetic and motivated. 


    This internship offers:

    • Paid Internship with competitive compensation.
    • Reimbursement of mileage/transit to and from meeting sites.
    • Work t-shirts and muck boots provided and/or reimbursed by Audubon.
    • Certifications, field trips, licensing reimbursed by Audubon.

    Audubon Great Lakes is dedicated to building a culturally diverse organization and strongly encourages applications from people of color and women.

    Essential Functions

    Habitat Restoration interns will receive on-the-job training and develop skills in a variety of practices related to the management of natural habitats, including:

    • Stewardship and land management responsibilities in ecological restoration.
    • Develop leadership and team-building skills while receiving professional job-skill training.
    • Brush and weed management by using a wide variety of tools, including: backpack herbicide sprayers, chainsaws, brushcutters and hand tools.
    • Restoration techniques, including plant identification, planting native plugs, seed collection, processing and dispersal, and when applicable, controlled burns.
    • Ability to test for and obtain IL Herbicide Applicator License, and obtain certifications in Brushcutter/Chainsaw Feller 1 and Chicago Wilderness Prescribed Burn training courses.
    • Learn effective collaboration by working alongside additional restoration crews, volunteers and conservation partners in the region.
    • Attend educational trainings and events to gain exposure to other conservation organizations and professionals for the purpose of future job placement.
    • Interaction with members of the public visiting the natural area during occasional weekend volunteer days and work week.

    Qualifications and Experience

    • Must have access to a car for transportation to work sites OR ability to take public transportation to designated meeting site.
    • Recent graduate of an institution of higher learning OR previous experience in habitat restoration preferred.
    • Ability to work collaboratively as a member of a team.
    • Ability to quickly study for and pass the Illinois Herbicide Applicator Test (review materials will be provided).
    • Experience with, or ability to quickly learn, safe usage of basic maintenance tools including: hand tools, brushcutters and chainsaws.
    • Ability to work in inclement weather conditions, withstanding extreme temperatures, heavy mosquito presence and difficult terrain.
    • Ability to lift, carry and move heavy objects up to 50lbs.
    • Ability to perform repetitive tasks with attention to detail.
    • Ability to follow instructions and use independent judgment in decisions, as needed.
    • Willingness to work a flexible schedule, including some weekends, as applicable.
    • Strong interest in conservation and/or working outdoors.
    • Must be 18 years or older with ability to work 40 hours per week, June-October



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