Overview

Forestry Technician- Champion Trees Project in the State, Private, and Tribal Forestry Unit of the International Institute of Tropical Forestry
DURATION:
8 months, full-time with 40 hours per week working schedule. Internship to start Summer 2024. Exact date to be announce.
LOCATION:
International Institute of Tropical Forestry, 1201 Calle Ceiba, Jardin Botanico Sur, San Juan, Puerto Rico 00926-1119
POSITION DESCRIPTION:
This intern position is located at the International Institute of Tropical Forestry assigned to the State, Private, and Tribal Forestry Unit and where the intern performs a wide variety of activities related to the Champion Trees Project (CTP). The CTP is a special initiative developed by a retired Institute Scientist, Dr. John Francis. CTP measures and documents to identify by size and points the remarkable trees for tree species in Puerto Rico. Each species Champion Tree is included in the Champion Trees Registry for Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands.
This position will provide on-the-job training opportunities to a new graduate in more specific forestry technician skills to assess tree conditions, DBH, canopy, etc. Learn about native tree species and the criteria for determining exemplary individuals of species to be included in the Champion Tree Registry.
MAJOR DUTIES:
  • Assists with implementation of the Champion Trees Project in Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands.
  • Communicates with employees of Federal and State governments, local officials, private organizations, citizens, and landowners who shared interest in the Champion Trees Project.
  • Assists in communicating the Champion Tree Project mission and vision to diverse audiences through presentations and other written and verbal forms of communications. Assists with the development of briefing materials and updates.
  • This position is established to perform a variety of routine and frequently complex tasks involving techniques and practices related to evaluating trees.
  • Conduct field visits to evaluate and measure nominated individuals including size and conditions.
  • Prepare reports, take photographs, and prepare recommendations to the nominated individual.
  • Verify qualification and discuss with the program specialist.
  • In consultation with the IITF Data Manager, uploads information on each one of the Champion Trees including species, location, condition, measurements, and photo.
  • Occasionally participated on off-site programs to colleges, schools, and civic groups under SPTF Leadership supervision.
  • Coordinates with unit Public Affairs Officer in the preparation of articles for publication in newspapers and magazines outlining the Champion Trees Project.
  • Performs other duties as assigned.
THE IDEAL CANDIDATE:
  • Is a recent bachelor’s degree graduate, undergoing a graduate degree or recent higher degree graduate.
  • Has enthusiasm for public service and customer service.
  • Values working with people and helping others.
  • Good at building networks.
  • Quick learner and highly passionate about pursuing a career with the US Forest Service.
  • Strong interpersonal skills.
  • Takes constructive criticism well.
  • Strong writing skills.
  • Punctuality an attendance.
  • Effective communication.
  • Can work and learn independently.
  • Manages time accordingly to fit in all the scheduled tasks.
  • Has basic computer skills.
  • Has good communication skills within diverse contexts.
  • Has initiative to outreach and assist current and new partners or collaborators.
MINIMUM QUALIFICATIONS:
  • US citizenship or permanent residency. Interns must undergo a government background check if selected.
  • Must be 17 years of age or older.
  • Must have a driver’s license.
  • Education: bachelor’s degree or higher degree in forestry, botany, agronomy, biology, environmental sciences, or related fields.
  • Familiarity with: Microsoft Word, Excel, MS Teams, Facebook, Twitter, Google docs.
  • Skills: good with teamwork, responsible, flexibility under quickly changing working conditions (e.g., pandemic), can work independently and can search and learn independently, good communication skills.
  • Tree evaluation including height, DBH, canopy size and condition, tree identification.
  • Use of GPS and GIS, mapping, Photograph.
  • Experience preparing reports, taking photographs, and preparing written recommendations.
STIPEND AND BENEFITS:
  • A biweekly stipend of $1,300-$1,500 based on a 40-hour workweek.
  • Monthly housing stipend up to $1,000 per month.
  • Monthly commuting stipend up to $50.
  • Health insurance coverage.
  • Travel expenses paid to participate in orientation July 15, 2024 – July 19, 2024.
  • Funds available to support professional development opportunities that align with role and goals (training, conference, etc.).
  • Direct Hire Authority Eligibility – after completing 960 hours, DHA status provides special non-competitive hiring status when applying for certain federal positions.
WORKING CONDITIONS:
This position will be based at the USFS International Institute of Tropical Forestry in San Juan, Puerto Rico. Work environment will vary between outdoor assignments in the field and indoor assignments in the office. Offices are adequately lighted and ventilated. Duties in the outdoors can occur in sunny, warm or hot, and humid conditions. Candidates are encouraged to research local conditions and amenities.
APPLICATION:
Hispanic Access Foundation (Hispanic Access) is managing the recruitment for these positions. All applications should be submitted through Hispanic Access’ MANO Project application page. A resume and two references will be required for submission. Your application or resume should include professional and educational experience, along with any awards, technical skills or volunteer activities. Application questions or issues may be directed to nicole@hispanicaccess.org.
Applications for this position are due on Sunday, April 28, 2024 at 11:59 pm. Interviews are scheduled to take place between May 7 and May 9, 2024.
REASONABLE ACCOMMODATION POLICY STATEMENT:
Federal agencies must provide reasonable accommodation to applicants with disabilities where appropriate. Applicants requiring reasonable accommodation for any part of the application and/or hiring process should contact Hispanic Access Foundation directly. Determinations on requests for reasonable accommodation will be made on a case-by-case basis.
US FOREST SERVICE MISSION:
To sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of the Nation’s forests and grasslands to meet the needs of present and future generations.
HISPANIC ACCESS FOUNDATION MISSION:
Hispanic Access Foundation (Hispanic Access) is a 501(c)(3) national nonprofit organization that connects Latinos and People of Color to partners and opportunities improving lives and creating an equitable society. Hispanic Access’s vision is that all Hispanics throughout the U.S. enjoy good physical health, a healthy natural environment, a quality education, economic success and civic engagement in their communities with the sum improving the future of America.
ABOUT THE INTERNATIONAL INSTITUTE OF TROPICAL FORESTRY:
The International Institute of Tropical Forestry (the Institute), headquartered in Río Piedras, Puerto Rico, is a research and technology transfer institute that is dedicated to advancing tropical forestry on insular, national, and international levels, and developing and exchanging knowledge critical to sustaining benefits of tropical forests and grasslands.
The Institute has been in continuous operation since its inception as the Tropical Forest Experiment Station in 1939.
The vision of the Institute is to serve as a center for excellence where creativity and accomplishments result in timely products and services that anticipate the needs of society as it mitigates and adapts to environmental change.
Our mission is to develop and disseminate scientifically based knowledge that contributes to the conservation of forests, wildlife, and watersheds of the American tropics in the context of environmental change.
State, Private, and Tribal Forestry at the International Institute of Tropical Forestry
State, Private and Tribal Forestry provides professional, technical, and financial assistance to state agencies, universities, and non-profit organizations within Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
Through targeted technical and financial assistance and conservation education, federal resources are leveraged to protect and support sustainable management of the islands’ forests and ecosystems to produce goods and services that are important to many communities.
This assistance is focused on cooperative forestry, forest health, urban and community forestry, cooperative fire protection, and landowner and legacy assistance programs.
OUR PROGRAMS:
State, Private and Tribal Forestry programs work in partnership with the Puerto Rico Department of Natural and Environmental Resources, the Puerto Rico Fire Department, the Virgin Islands Department of Agriculture, the U.S. Virgin Islands Fire Service, and various other state, local, and non-profit organizations and universities throughout the US Caribbean.
US FOREST SERVICE:
Is a federal agency under the U.S. Department of Agriculture that manages 193 million acres of public lands in the form of national forests and grasslands, provide technical and financial assistance to state, private, and tribal forestry agencies and make up the largest forestry research organization in the world.
The US Forest Service was established by Congress in 1905 to provide quality water and timber for the nation’s benefit. Congress later directed the Forest Service to broaden its management scope for additional multiple uses and benefits and for the sustained yield of renewable resources such as water, forage, wildlife, wood, and recreation.
The mission of the Forest Service is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of the nation’s forests and grasslands to meet the needs of present and future generations.
The Forest Service motto, “Caring for the Land and Serving People,” captures the spirit of our mission, which we accomplish through five main activities:
  • Protection and management of natural resources on lands we manage.
  • Research on all aspects of forestry, rangeland management, and forest resource utilization.
  • Community assistance and cooperation with State and local governments, forest industries, and private landowners to help protect and manage non-Federal forest and associated range and watershed lands to improve conditions in rural areas.
  • Achievement and support of an effective workforce that reflects the diversity of the American people.
  • International assistance to formulate policy and coordinate U.S. support for the protection and sound management of the world’s forest resources.
As employees of the Forest Service, we believe in:
Service. To each other. To the American people. To the planet.
Interdependence. Of all things. People and nature. Communities and colleagues. The past, present, and future.
Conservation. Protection when necessary. Preservation when appropriate. Restoration, when needed, and wise management for multiple use and enjoyment always.
Diversity. People and cultures. Perspectives and ideas. Experiences and ecosystems.
Safety. In every way: physical, psychological, and social.
Our code is grounded in our core values, and we live them by:
Treating everyone with respect.
Empowering one another.
Investing in relationships.
Modeling integrity.
Protecting one another.
Learning from mistakes.