Natural Areas Technician Intern

  • University of Michigan - School of Natural Resources and Environment
  • University of Michigan - Saginaw Forest, 3900 West Liberty Road, Ann Arbor, MI 48103, United States
  • Apr 19, 2017
Internship- Paid Biology/Ecology Communication/Public Outreach Natural Resources Wildlife/Endangered Species

Job Description

Application Deadline:  Applicants are encouraged to apply as soon as possible. This position will be listed until filled.

Job Summary

Internship Program & Job Summary:  The School of Natural Resources and Environment (SNRE) at the University of Michigan is seeking to hire a full-time, temporary Natural Areas Technician Intern for 15 weeks for the summer of 2017 to assist with stewardship activities to aid in the immediate care of the woods at Saginaw Forest, in support of SNRE’s teaching, research, public outreach, and conservation goals. There is potential for continuation of the internship on a part-time basis into Fall Semester 2017. 

Some of the key educational and training outcomes of the internship will be:

  • Learn to identify and assess ecological conditions in the field.
  • Identify and map management zones as part of creating a stewardship plan for Saginaw Forest.
  • Depending on the skills and interests of the intern, learning to test and monitor invasive plant removal strategies, experiment with restoration approaches, and develop educational/outreach materials.
  • Experience in trail improvement and possibly developing interpretive trails.  
  • Additional opportunities to visit and learn from stewardship activities at related U-M properties including Matthaei Botanical Gardens and Nichols Arboretum.

Job Duties:  Under the guidance of Professor Bob Grese and SNRE’s Property Committee (including faculty and the Facilities Manager), the Natural Areas Technician Intern will be expected to perform the following job duties:

  • Maintain trails and the stewardship of forest and natural areas at Saginaw Forest.
  • Mow, brush clearing, select removal of downed trees, trail construction, and maintenance.
  • Identify and control exotic invasive plants.
  • Inventory and map vegetation.
  • Assist researchers, and map features and management activities in Saginaw Forest.
  • Collect base information for class use of Saginaw Forest.
  • May organize and lead volunteers.
  • Provide outreach for SNRE to users of Saginaw Forest, communicating use policies to visitors and sharing other helpful information. 

Required Qualifications*

  • A student currently enrolled in, or a recent graduate of, a Bachelor’s, Master’s, or Doctoral degree program relating to environmental science, natural resources management, forestry, ecology, horticulture, or a related field.
  • An understanding of basic ecology, Michigan natural communities, and native plants.
  • A love of the outdoors!
  • Willingness to work outdoors, hike several miles in natural areas and work while exposed to variable weather conditions, insects, and other outdoor hazards is necessary. 
  • Experience working independently, and a willingness to work as a team with SNRE and U-M faculty, staff, and students. 
  • Willing to operate lawn equipment and tools such as riding lawn tractors, push mowers, and tillers.  (Training/safety is required and will be provided.)
  • Ability to move objects weighing as much as 50 lbs. 
  • Must have a reliable means of transportation to travel to Saginaw Forest.

Desired Qualifications*

  • Experience with exotic invasive plants and their control is desired. 
  • Ability to use a variety of hand tools, chain saws, power tools and power equipment is preferred.  (Training/safety will be provided.)
  • A State of Michigan Commercial Pesticide Applicator’s License or willingness to obtain one (SNRE provides study materials and may cover certification expenses). 

Additional Information

Term: 15 weeks between May 1 – August 31, 2017

Work Schedule:  40 hours per week Monday – Friday, schedule can be flexible within daylight hours.

Job Location:  Saginaw Forest, 3900 W. Liberty Road, Ann Arbor, MI 48103

Work Conditions: This position primarily works independently, and performs job duties outdoors in all weather conditions, and may be exposed to insects and other outdoor hazards at the Saginaw Forest.

U-M EEO/AA Statement

The University of Michigan is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer.

Job Level

Entry-level, Intern (Paid)


Academic Institution


Pay Rate:  $15.00 - $16.50 per hour, depending on experience and education