Now Hiring Seasonal Positions

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Application Deadline: March 15th, 2024  

Employment Dates: April 2024 for 29  weeks (potential seasonal employment for 2 years)

Time Requirement: 25 hours/ week – some variation of work schedule each week based on weather conditions

Compensation: $17/hr

The Nature Institute is a private non-profit conservation organization that fosters an awareness and appreciation for the natural world through preservation, restoration, and education.  The Nature Institute manages nearly 500 acres along the Mississippi River bluffs in Godfrey, IL.  This property includes a variety of natural communities protecting a diverse population of plants and animals.  

Position Description:

This seasonal Land Steward performs duties related to prairie upkeep and restoration in concordance with the Natural Areas Stewardship Grant received by TNI. This grant position prioritizes work on 60 acres of prairie and adjoining wood lines on the property. The work will focus on enhancing existing prairie habitat for our native wildlife. Duties include, but are not limited to herbicide application, tree removal, plant identification, planting, seed collection, and assisting with controlled burns. This position reports to and works closely with the Director of Stewardship and will follow policies set forth by the Board of Directors and the Illinois Nature Preserves Commission. This position will require occasionally variable hours dependent on weather conditions.

This is an ideal opportunity for a college student interested in ecology and land restoration. Some background in native restoration is preferred.

Experience:

  • Hands-on plant identification, small tool/equipment operation, experience with a chainsaw, and ecological restoration activity exposure
  • Ability to work outdoors under adverse weather conditions
  • Strong oral communication skills
  • Enthusiasm, strong work ethic, courteous and positive attitude, team player mentality
  • Participation in controlled burns a plus
  • Must be 18 or older

Essential Duties:

  • Operate chainsaws and other small power tools including mowers, brush cutters, hedge trimmers, weed whackers, and water pumps, and use herbicide sprayers, backpack water tanks, and hand tools
  • Execute habitat management and habitat project plans under the supervision of the Director of Stewardship.  Tasks include cutting, spraying herbicide, brush hogging, and prescribed burning.  The Illinois Nature Preserves Commission guidelines will be used as a guide to perform habitat management tasks
  • Assist Director of Stewardship with supervising volunteers
  • Maintain, repair, and improve tools and equipment.  Tasks include performing oil changes, greasing, cleaning, and other tasks as they arise
  • Maintain, repair, and improve trails.  Tasks include clearing downed trees and limbs, grading and repairing uneven trails, removing trash, and other tasks as they arise
  • Collect, clean, and disperse native seed
  • Help maintain a native seed nursery and greenhouse
  • Prepare burn breaks and participate in prescribed burns
  • Monitor property boundaries and access points for trespassing and/or undesirable uses.
  • Follow safe working practices and make appropriate use of related safety equipment, as required

The above list of essential duties is not exhaustive. The seasonal land steward will be expected to perform other tasks not on the list as they arise.

Please apply using the form below. A resume and cover letter must be uploaded in order for the application to be considered complete. If you have any questions about the position, email Rebekah at rhelmich@thenatureinstitute.org.

Full Job Description

Application Deadline: Until Position is Filled

Hour Requirements: This position works for 12 weeks at 35 hours a week.

Compensation: $14-$17/hour commensurate with experience

The Seasonal Land Steward performs duties necessary for the maintenance and upkeep of lands owned and managed by The Nature Institute (TNI), including the Mississippi Sanctuary, Cypress Pond, the Savanna, Hutchinson Bird Sanctuary, Olin Nature Preserve, and Heartland Prairie.  Duties include but are not limited to building and facilities maintenance, turf management, and habitat management.  The Seasonal Land Steward will work closely with the Stewardship Director and will follow policies set forth by the Board of Directors and the Illinois Nature Preserves Commission.  This position will require occasionally variable hours (including weekends) to assist in stewardship, education, and outreach programs. 

Essential Duties:

  • Execute habitat management and habitat project plans under the supervision of the Stewardship Director.  Tasks include cutting, spraying, brush hogging, and burning.  Basic plant identification will be encouraged.  The Illinois Nature Preserves Commission guidelines will be used as a guide to perform habitat management tasks
  • Perform grounds keeping on turf management areas.  Tasks include mowing, weed eating, spraying herbicide , seeding, tree trimming, removing downed trees and limbs, removing stumps, and performing other turf management tasks as need arises
  • Assist with maintenance and repairs of buildings, facilities, equipment, tools, trails, and roads
  • Operate tools and equipment to perform turf management, habitat management, and facilities maintenance tasks.  Tools and equipment include vehicles, utilities vehicles, mowers, tractors, chainsaws, brush cutters, shop saws, leaf blowers, sprayers, brush cutters, and power tools.
  • Inspect and maintain trails and roads.  Tasks include clearing downed trees and limbs, removing trash, and assisting the Land Steward and Stewardship Director with other tasks.
  • Monitor, install, and repair signage on TNI properties
  • Assist education and outreach staff with projects when need arises
  • Assist Stewardship Director in supervising interns and volunteers
  • Follow safe working practices and make appropriate use of related safety equipment, as required.

Apply for this Job:

Please apply using the form below. A resume and cover letter must be uploaded in order for the application to be considered complete.

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Application Deadline: March 1st, 2024. Application may close early if hiring needs are fulfilled earlier.  

Employment Dates: 5/28 –  7/26 (No camp for the week of 7/1 – 7/5). Mandatory pre-camp training takes place 5/28 – 5/31.

Counselors must be available for all camp dates in order to be eligible for hire.

Compensation: $14.50 – 17/hr, determined by experience and education.

The Nature Institute is looking for fun, energetic camp counselors for the summer of 2024. Counselors will interact daily with
campers, lead hikes, crafts, and teach ecological programs. We’re seeking individuals that are passionate about the natural world
with a willingness to learn (and try!) new things. This position is Monday through Friday from 8 – 3:30. There is also an opportunity to
help lead an overnight campout for our Middle School campers.

Apply Here

Find Job Description Here

Camp Season: June 3, 2024 to July 26, 2024 (No camp for the week of 7/1 – 7/5). 

The Nature Institute is a private, non-profit conservation organization that fosters an awareness and appreciation for the natural world through preservation, restoration, and education.  The Nature Institute manages nearly 500 acres along the Mississippi River bluffs in Godfrey, IL.  This property includes a variety of natural communities that are home to a diverse population of plants and animals.  In 1982, The Nature Institute held its first Discovery Day Camp at the Olin Nature Preserve in the historic Talahi Lodge.  Each year the camp has successfully grown and it remains the only nature camp of its kind in the St. Louis metropolitan area.  Open from June through August, the camp is organized by grade levels from PreK – Middle School.  The camp is open to children of all backgrounds.

Junior Volunteer Counselor Position:

The Nature Institute is looking for fun, energetic junior counselors (JC) to volunteer for the summer of 2023.  JCs will interact daily with campers, help lead hikes, crafts and ecological programs under the supervision of the Summer Day Camp Counselors and the Assistant Camp Director.  

Qualifications:

  • Persons 13 – 16 years of age.
  • Applicants must possess enthusiasm, patience, desire for nature, and leadership skills. 
  • Be self-motivated and be able to work as a team .
  • Applicants will be required to work outside in all  weather conditions and be on their feet for long periods of time.
  • Applicants must attend mandatory training on Saturday, June 1st, 2024 from 12 – 5 pm prior to working with campers.
  • Applicants must have their own transportation.
  • Applicant selection will favor those who are available to commit to at least 2 weeks this summer; Monday through Friday.
  • The Nature Institute is an Equal Opportunity Employer.

Duties will include but are not limited to:

*Assist with supervision and safety of campers 

*Help complete daily chores

*Assist with daily programming

*Assist in daily planning

*Serve as a positive role model

*Ensure everyone has FUN!

Growth and Development:

Junior Counselors will report to and be evaluated by the Assistant Camp Director and summer camp counselors. 

JCs will also meet once a week with the Assistant Camp Director for a brief training. JCs will receive a volunteer hours certificate at the end of the summer.

Apply Here

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The Nature Institute is an equal opportunity employer that is committed to diversity and inclusion in the workplace. We prohibit discrimination and harassment of any kind based on race, color, sex, religion, sexual orientation, national origin, disability, genetic information, pregnancy, or any other protected characteristic as outlined by federal, state, or local laws.

This policy applies to all employment practices within our organization, including hiring, recruiting, promotion, termination, layoff, recall, leave of absence, compensation, benefits, training, and apprenticeship. The Nature Institute makes hiring decisions based solely on qualifications, merit, and business needs at the time.