Community Science Associate

  • Clean Ocean Action
  • Apr 06, 2021
Full time Advocacy and Policy Biology - Ecology Communication - Public Outreach Conservation/ Natural Resources Environmental Science - Engineering Oceans - Estuaries - Coastal Resiliency Water Quality Watershed - Stormwater - Wastewater

Job Description

Community Science Associate

Full Time position

 Clean Ocean Action (COA) is a successful, nonprofit regional coalition focused on reducing sources of pollution in the marine waters of the NJ/NY coast.  COA is seeking a Community Science Associate (CSA) who is dedicated to science and environmental stewardship to support a professional science and community engagement team to track down and eliminate sources of pollution, including pathogens and litter.  CSA must adhere to scientific and safety protocols, and enjoy outdoor water quality sampling (perhaps in wet weather conditions), data management and lab work.  CSA must be an efficient, motivated, knowledgeable, talented, team-player and hard-working ocean advocate, yet able to go with the flow of changes in programs and priorities.

 General Job Description

In consultation with COA’s Executive Director, Staff Scientist, and Watershed Program Coordinator, the Community Science Associate will coordinate and implement community science-based pollution reduction programs and help advance water quality monitoring initiatives. This will include conducting water quality sampling and analysis, volunteer engagement and coordination, and community outreach and education. Under direct supervision of the Watershed Program Coordinator, the CSA will routinely work with the Staff Scientist on ongoing scientific investigations.

Specific Responsibilities

  • Coordinate the logistics of water quality testing for several watershed pollution track down programs, including Rally for the Waterways, which require adherence to QA/QC compliance, involving:
    • Training and coordinating community science volunteers
    • Conducting water quality sampling, including in wet weather conditions
    • Preparing and maintaining supplies, and field and lab equipment
    • Maintaining forms and lines of communication.
  • Attend partner project coordination meetings, as needed.
  • Ensure the integrity of COA’s water quality monitoring data by adhering to all general field, laboratory and project-specific protocols, maintaining equipment, maintaining detailed records, and assisting with data analysis.
  • Facilitate effective communication of water quality issues to various audiences, especially elected officials and citizens, by compiling data and literature for outreach products (i.e., brief reports or presentations).
  • Enhance COA’s other pathogen source track down and water quality monitoring initiatives, such as fish kill and algal bloom monitoring. This includes coordinating community science volunteers, promoting citizen engagement in pollution reduction solutions (e.g., use of online water quality reporting tools), and developing relevant social media content.
  • Enhance marine debris reduction programs, including the Beach Sweeps and Reduce Litter in the Delaware River Project, by assisting with data management, volunteer engagement, and program logistics.

Qualifications and Qualities

  • Knowledgeable and fluent in marine water quality
  • Bachelor’s Degree in Marine, Environment, Biology, Physical Sciences, or similar
  • Working car and current driver’s license
  • Flexible schedule to meet sampling needs and requirements, including in early morning, evenings and inclement weather, as needed
  • Strong oral and written communication skills, especially to nonscientific audiences
  • Proficient in Microsoft Office and Google applications
  • Experience with volunteer coordination and community engagement, preferred
  • Experience with database, statistical applications, and GIS, preferred
  • Field and lab experience in environmental chemistry and microbiology, preferred

 Application Instructions: Position currently open. Applications will be accepted until position filled. Please follow the directions below and submit the required documents to with “Community Science Associate_Your Name” in the subject line.

  1. Resume or CV, including GPA if a recent graduate and any volunteer activities and hobbies.
  2. Cover letter expressing your interest in working for Clean Ocean Action, why you enjoy this work, and why you are good at it. Please also include why you are considering leaving your current position and/or changing careers, if relevant.
  3. Salary expectations.
  4. One relevant writing sample.
  5. Three references (past or present direct supervisors preferred, not colleagues or personal friends). Include their name, position, connection to you, and contact information (phone and email).

 About COA

Clean Ocean Action is a non-profit 501(c)3 organization dedicated to protecting marine water quality in the New York Bight (those waters between Montauk Point, NY, and Cape May, NJ, and to the continental shelf). COA is a broad-based coalition of over 115 active boating, business, community, conservation, diving, environmental, fishing, religious, service, student, surfing, and women’s groups. COA identifies sources of pollution and takes actions to stop them using research, education, and citizen action. For more information about COA visit

COA is committed to providing an environment of mutual respect where equal employment opportunities are available to all applicants and crew members without regard to race, color, religion, age, sex, national origin, disability status, genetics, protected veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, or any other characteristic protected by federal, state or local laws.

Job Level



Nonprofit- NGO

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