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TITLE:  Student Interpreter/Educator
              Multiple Positions
              1 position    April 27 – October 31
              1 position    May 18 – August 23

REPORTS TO: Supervisory Park Ranger Palisades District

LOCATION: C&O Canal National Historical Park Great Falls, Potomac Maryland.

SUMMARY: Works with the Park staff at Great Falls Tavern site location to assist with operations, education, and interpretive mission.

Founded in 2007, the C&O Canal Trust is the Chesapeake and Ohio Canal National Historical Park’s official nonprofit partner.  The Trust’s mission is to work in partnership with the National Park Service to protect, restore, and promote the Chesapeake & Ohio Canal National Historical Park.  The Trust engages communities and individuals to realize the C&O Canal’s natural, historical, and recreational potential.  For more information, please visit CanalTrust.org.

This position is located at Chesapeake and Ohio National Historical Park. The duty location is Potomac, MD. Preserving America's colorful Canal era and transportation history, the Chesapeake & Ohio Canal National Historical Park is 184.5 miles of adventure. Originally, the C&O Canal was a lifeline for communities and businesses along the Potomac River as coal, lumber, grain and other agricultural products floated down the canal to market. It endures as a national historical park today – a pathway into history, nature and recreation.

POSITION DESCRIPTION AND RESPONSIBILITIES

Provides visitor services and education such as giving talks and guided tours, interpreting historic features, answering visitor questions and providing miscellaneous services. Staffs information desk at the visitor center and serves as initial contact for visitors.  Provides information on a wide variety of subjects and park related activities. Performs minor maintenance duties such as cleaning counters, dusting and washing displays as needed.

Provide interpretive and operational support for special events.

Serves as a member of the canal boat crew and as a costumed interpreter to deliver cultural history demonstrations aboard a mule-drawn canal boat.  Boat duties include pushing and pulling a 7 ton canal boat with ropes and poles, climbing up and down ladders from a moving canal boat, walking along narrow surfaces along lock gates, steering a canal boat into a original lift lock (only a foot and a half clearance). Perform multiple positions on the crew, including captain, while wearing period clothing. Assist with daily care of parks mules. This includes feeding, watering, maintaining a shelter, grooming, manure removal, harnessing, and driving a tandem hitch, securing fencing or a corral, and reporting all injured stock to an appropriate person for more advanced treatment when needed. The interpreter/educator leads mules in a responsible manner and only after receiving appropriate training.  

Perform various administrative duties e.g. scheduling, gathering routine information for reports, compilation of statistical data, etc. as needed. 

PHYSICAL DEMANDS:  Standing for long periods of time, walking for distances up to six miles daily, climbing and descending steep inclines, bending, and lifting moderately heavy items in a repetitive motion is required.  Mental stress and physical fatigue occur due to high volume of personal contacts, occasional emergency responses, and repetitive nature of interpretive programs.  For you safety, applicants must have the ability to swim. 

WORK ENVIRONMENT:  Duties will be performed on site at locations designated by the park, e.g. visitors center, campgrounds, historical sites, auditoriums, etc. Work is performed indoors at the visitors’ center as well as in outdoor areas, resulting in exposure to extreme temperatures, rain, snow, wind and direct sunlight.  

Must wear 19th century costume or C&O Canal Trust uniform. May be assigned to work nights, early mornings, rotating shifts, holidays, and weekends.

 

QUALIFICATIONS

You must demonstrate that you possess either the specialized experience or the education as described below.  Equivalent combinations of experience and education may also be used to qualify. 

In order to qualify for this position you must possess one of the following:

A. Six (6) months of general experience and six (6) months of specialized experience for a total of one year of experience.  General experience is any type of work that demonstrates the applicant's ability to perform the work of the position, or (2) experience that provided a familiarity with the subject matter or processes of the broad subject area of the occupation.  Examples of general experience include, but are not limited to, selling merchandise, collecting and accounting for fees or other monies, greeting visitors, disseminating information, providing directions, or other work which required dealing with people on a recurring basis; and that indicates the ability to acquire the knowledge and skills needed to perform the duties of this position.  Specialized experience is experience that involved oral presentation of historical, scientific, or program information to groups; or developing and/or revising technical, historical, or scientific information for oral presentation to groups.  Examples of specialized experience could include Park Guide or tour leader; naturalist; environmental educator or teacher; or other similar work.  -OR-  B. Successfully completed two years of study above high school (60 semester hours or 90 quarter hours) which included at least 12 semester hours in subjects such as American history, science and/or public speaking.  -OR- C. Equivalent combination of experience and education.

Credit will be given for all appropriate qualifying experience.  In order to receive credit for experience, your resume must clearly indicate the nature of the duties and responsibilities for each position, starting and ending dates of employment (month/year), and the number of hours worked per week.

Qualifying experience may be obtained in the private or public sectors. 

ARE YOU USING EDUCATION TO QUALIFY?  You MUST provide transcripts or other documentation to support your educational claims.  Unless otherwise stated: (1) unofficial transcripts are acceptable, or (2) a list with all your courses, grades, semester, year, and credit for the course.  All materials must be submitted by the closing date of this announcement

Undergraduate and Graduate Education: Major study -- natural resource management, natural sciences, earth sciences, history, archeology, anthropology, park and recreation management, law enforcement/police science, social sciences, museum sciences, business administration, public administration, behavioral sciences, sociology, or other closely related subjects pertinent to the management and protection of natural and cultural resources. Course work in fields other than those specified may be accepted if it clearly provides applicants with the background of knowledge and skills necessary for successful job performance in the position to be filled.

Education must be accredited by an accrediting institution recognized by the U.S. Department of Education in order for it to be credited towards qualifications.  Applicants can verify accreditation at the following website: http://www.ed.gov/admins/finaid/accred/index.html All education claimed by applicants will be verified by the appointing agency accordingly.

Foreign Education:  Education completed outside the United States must have been evaluated by a private U.S. organization that specializes in interpretation of foreign educational credentials, commonly called a credential evaluation service or education that is recognized by the Secretary of Education from an accredited body http://ope.ed.gov/accreditation/

All qualifications must be met by the closing date of this announcement, April 1, 2014.

 

REQUIRED SKILLS

A passion for the C&O Canal Trust’s mission

Ability to communicate orally to diverse groups

Ability to communicate effectively

Ability to operate a busy visitor center

Ability to deliver historical information through prescribed programs/activities/talks/demonstrations

Skills in developing and implementing interpretive and communication strategies

Excellent writing/editing and verbal communication skills

Sincere commitment to work collaboratively with all constituent groups, including visitors, staff, volunteers, donors, and program participants

Self-starter, able to work independently, enjoys creating and implementing new initiatives

Excellent organizational skills and attention to detail

Experience with Word and basic computer skills required

Fluency in Spanish and English is desirable

 

SALARY AND BENEFITS

This is a full-time temporary position. Schedule will normally be an 8 hour shift 8:30 am – 5 pm from Wednesday – Sunday. Selected applicant will be paid 15.00 an hour.  Benefits include sick leave and annual leave.  Must wear 19th century costume or C&O Canal Trust uniform. May be assigned to work nights, early mornings, rotating shifts, holidays, and weekends as needed.

The C&O Canal Trust is an equal opportunity employer and is committed to the belief that each individual is entitled to equal employment opportunity.

 

TO APPLY

Once you complete and submit your application package, a review of your resume and supporting documentation will be made to ensure you meet the basic qualification requirements. 

Evaluation based on: 

Ability to communicate orally to diverse groups.

Ability to communicate effectively orally and in writing.

Skill in assisting the operation of a busy visitor center and site.

Ability to deliver historical information through prescribed activities/programs/talks/demonstrations. 

 

To apply, please send cover letter, resume, and three professional references via email to:

Catherine_Bragaw@nps.gov
Supervisory District Park Ranger

 

INTERNSHIPS

The Trust currently has one opening for a Volunteer Coordinator intern.

Dates of Internship: Mid-February to Mid-June
Hours: Flexible; based on staff and intern requirements and schedules; minimum three days per week as well as attendance at three Saturday events in April and May.

Location: Hagerstown, MD

Duties: Intern will assist Trust staff in the planning and execution of large-scale Canal Pride volunteer events for the spring of 2014. Duties and responsibilities will include, but are not limited to:

 

  • Developing database of special interest groups for targeted marketing of events
  • Promoting events in community newsletters, online calendars, and via social media
  • Distributing flyers and signs across length of park
  • Recruiting volunteers, both individuals and groups, from local educational, social, and recreational organizations
  • Coordinating refreshments, registration, and other logistics for events
  • Coordinating the participation of Elected Officials, Press, and other VIPs
  • Maintaining event planning documents and schedules as well as a volunteer database
  • Assisting in the execution of events, including packing supplies, event set-up, and volunteer coordination.

Qualifications:

 

  • Currently pursuing a college degree in related fields
  • Leadership and organizational skills
  • Customer-service approach to all professional relationships
  • Excellent communication (oral and written) skills and the ability to excel at details, multi-tasking and working under deadlines
  • Outgoing self-starter, but collaborates well in a team environment
  • Must have experience in the use of software programs such as MS Word, Excel, and PowerPoint
  • Previous experience with volunteer organizing, customer service, or event coordination preferred
  • As this position involves extensive local travel to and from events, a personal vehicle is required
  • Availability to attend three Saturday events in April and May is mandatory

Benefits: Individuals interning with the Trust will have unique opportunities to further develop their professional skills, including:

 

  • Gaining valuable work experience in the nonprofit industry and partnering with government agencies
  • Networking with local business owners and community groups
  • This is an unpaid internship, but selected candidate will be reimbursed for any direct travel costs for events attended

How to Apply: Interested parties should submit an application, including a cover letter and resume, to Becky Curtis at curtis@canaltrust.org.


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