VHCB AmeriCorps Position

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Nature Center Hours

VINS Nature Center
10am to 4pm Daily

Wild Bird Rehab is Open
Accepting Calls Only
802.359.5000 x212
8am to 4pm

Thank you for your interest in the AmeriCorps position. We are currently not accepting applications. Please check back for updates.

VHCB AmeriCorps - VINS Environmental Educator

Become an amazing Environmental Educator by serving at one of the premier nature centers in New England! You’ll learn how to handle and educate using ambassador raptors, present programs to thousands of people from around the world, gain skills and experience in using proper education techniques when teaching to school children, and build on your organizational skills while helping organize our education special events. Join us for an exciting year educating people from all walks of life!

REPORTS TO: Director, On-Site Programs & Exhibits

JOB LOCATION: VINS Nature Center, 149 Natures Way, Quechee, Vermont

KEY ELEMENTS INCLUDE: This position is part of the Vermont Housing & Conservation Board AmeriCorps (VHCB AmeriCorps). The VHCB AmeriCorps program supports the innovative dual-goal approach to creating stable affordable housing opportunities for Vermont residents while preserving the natural and working landscape. VHCB AmeriCorps is a national service program that places members with non-profit housing or land and energy conservation organizations around the state.

POSITION GOALS: VINS Environmental Educators deliver live raptor and Vermont natural history programs at the VINS Nature Center in Quechee, Vermont and through our Outreach program to other sites around the region.

Essential Functions

  • Present educational programs, many of which involve live animals (mainly raptors), to audiences of all ages (e.g., on-site daily programs, school tours, camps, Road Scholar programs, and outreaches such as resort programs, fairs, public relations events)
  • Teach field trip lessons to school children using Next Generation Science Standards, assist with lesson planning, and develop and maintain lesson materials
  • Assist with the organization and facilitation of special onsite educational events
  • Work with education staff to schedule and develop new programs as appropriate
  • Train and support volunteers in the care of resident birds
  • Train and support volunteers in the appropriate handling of education raptors
  • Help design, fabricate and install new education exhibits
  • Help with care, cleaning, training and handling of raptors and reptiles used in programs
  • Participate in an Independent Service Project under the guidance of VHCB AmeriCorps
  • Participate in VHCB AmeriCorps Trainings, Service Days, Events, and Program Initiatives
  • Engage in professional and personal development activities and networking opportunities

Secondary Functions

  • Attend VINS staff meetings and participate in organization functions as required
  • Serve with other departments at VINS to both bring added content to public programs and facilitate opportunities for cross-promotion of programs

Desired Qualifications

  • Experience in public speaking and environmental education is preferred
  • Degree in education or environmental sciences, working towards a degree or have equivalent education experience
  • General knowledge of raptors and New England natural history (or willingness and initiative to learn)
  • Comfortable using AV equipment (including PA systems)
  • Strong organizational skills and service ethic
  • Ability to serve independently and as part of a team
  • Must possess a valid driver’s license
  • Able to lift up to 50 pounds and lead moderate to strenuous trail hikes
  • Previous animal-handling experience, especially raptors, preferred
  • Current first aid and CPR certification (VINS may be able to assist in scheduling a training)

Minimum Qualifications

  • Ability to travel using company vehicles
  • Ability to serve weekends and evenings
  • Be US citizen or have permanent resident status
  • Be at least 18 years of age upon entering the Pre-Service Orientation or 17 years of age with verified parental permission
  • Be a high school graduate, have a GED certificate, or be willing to work towards a GED as part of the service-term; A member cannot have dropped out of high school to join AmeriCorps
  • Is willing to undergo an National Service Criminal History Check
  • Be committed to the VHCB AmeriCorps program’s ethic of service, appreciation of diversity, and personal and professional development of its participants
  • Have the ability and enthusiasm to drive to, attend, and participate in all required trainings and events, and be prepared to drive up to 2-3 hours each way
  • Available to regularly serve 40 hours per week

All VINS staff working directly with children are subject to a thorough background check, including fingerprinting and a criminal record check.

VINS is an Equal Opportunity Employer.

The Vermont Institute of Natural Science is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization supported by membership dues, admission and program fees, donations, and grants.