Description: Field instructors in the Ecology Project International (EPI) Yellowstone Program teach five- to nine-day field ecology courses for middle and high school students in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem. Our programs introduce students to real-world scientific study, engage them in conservation service projects, and raise their cultural and ecological awareness.
During Yellowstone winter and summer courses, students work with research partners (e.g., National Park Service) to collect data for wildlife research projects. Participants in our summer program also engage in a hands-on conservation service project with partners like B Bar Ranch or National Parks Conservation Association. Additionally, there is time dedicated to observing wildlife and experiencing Yellowstone’s unique geology, playing in the snow (winter), and whitewater rafting (summer). Field instructors guide student exploration via relevant ecology and scientific process lessons while engaging them in the practice of Leave No Trace and taking advantage of teachable moments.
An ideal candidate will demonstrate experience and aptitude in environmental education, field research, outdoor leadership, and/or the ecology, geography and cultures of the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem. Instructors work as a team with support from program staff to plan, lead, and teach EPI’s curriculum. Instructors coordinate logistics and opportunities with partners, vendors, group chaperones, and participants to craft an inspirational and educational experience. They are responsible for establishing and maintaining a safe physical and emotional learning environment.
As a member of a three-person field team, instructors deliver ecology and science curriculum to middle and high school students, lead students in leadership activities/games, respond to medical and behavioral incidents, transport participants, maintain EPI field equipment, and support assistant instructors in their development as environmental educators.
Because of the diversity of Yellowstone participants and EPI staff, field instructors should have the skills to address implicit bias and be culturally responsive in interactions with students and co-workers. Instructors are also encouraged to identify ways in which we can enhance inclusivity in planning and implementing our program.
This position also works to identify new and creative ways to cultivate an environment true to our core values: making a positive difference in the world; bringing integrity, honesty, and excellence to all aspects of our work; appreciating the outdoors for education, inspiration and enjoyment; and having fun and thinking BIG!
COVID-19 Statement: EPI has prepared COVID-19 policies and practices that follow health department and CDC guidelines to reduce the risks of exposure and transmission of the virus during course activities. We can’t eliminate this risk and it is possible that instructors will be exposed to the virus from participants, partners, vendors, or the general public while performing course duties. Health insurance is not provided by EPI as part of the compensation for this position. Instructors are asked to role model, lead, and enforce our field COVID-19 policies during a course and make appropriate decisions before, during, and after a course to reduce their exposure to the virus. Failure to comply with expectations may result in lost employment opportunities.
Schedule and Location: The Yellowstone wildlife ecology program runs from late December 2021 through August 2022. There will be a short break in late April to early May as the program switches between winter and summer activities. Instructors will work approximately 85 - 105 field days over the course of year, not including two mandatory, unpaid pre-employment training sessions (room & board provided) to be held in late December and early May.
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