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Developed Recreation Planning and Information Manager
Ref No.: 19-00104
Location: Roanoke, Virginia
Position Type:Intern
Start Date: 10/28/2019

BACKGROUND

The George Washington and Jefferson National Forests (GWJ) are comprised of approximately 1.8 million acres located primarily in Virginia, with lands extending into West Virginia and Kentucky.  The GWJ is one of the largest blocks of public land in the eastern United States and is the largest provider of outdoor recreation in Virginia. The recreation opportunities available on the GWJ are an economic driver for rural counties and neighboring communities and towns.  The GWJ plays an important role in the quality of life for local residents and visitors.   

With over 160 developed recreation sites, and another 100 trailheads and trail shelters, the GWJ manages thousands of constructed features. Federal agencies are required to keep an accurate inventory of this property.  The system adopted by the Forest Service is called NRM, short for Natural Resource Manager. 

POSITION DESCRIPTION

This 40-week program is a rigorous work and learning experience that provides exposure to the Forest Service, developmental and training opportunities, and the opportunity to make a lasting impression on generations to come. Participants will gain knowledge of developed recreation site infrastructure, importance of reliable data for program analysis and planning, funding levels and workforce needed to manage a large recreation program, requirements for accessibility and importance of assuring people of all physical abilities can enjoy outdoor recreation opportunities, the value of communicating accomplishments, challenges, needs and opportunities internally and externally.       

MAJOR DUTIES WILL INCLUDE

  • Update Recreation Site Data 

  • Review how GWJ data for developed recreation is structured in NRM and recommend if changes are needed to facilitate more efficient data updates for this project and in the future. 

  • Assess existing NRM data to identify gaps, anomalies, errors and inconsistencies.

  • Develop template(s) for field data collection including (1) conditions, (2) costs for repair/replacement, (3) status of accessibility of developed recreation sites, and (4) working circles. 

  • Coordinate with Forest and District Recreation Program Managers to schedule and conduct recreation site visits to inventory, assess and photograph conditions, and estimate maintenance costs.  Review and update "working circles” data. 

  • Enter data updates and corrections in NRM.  Upload photographs of features and structures.

  • Work with district recreation personnel and rangers to identify enhancement, maintenance, and decommissioning projects desired in the next 3-10 years.

  • Consult with Facilities and Civil Engineers in the Supervisor's Office to update data and projects related to water systems, wastewater systems, buildings and roads.

        ANALYZE DATA AND DEVELOP RECOMMENDATIONS

  • Analyze NRM generated reports, prepare recommendations for management efficiencies and cost reductions.  Assist in identifying projects that can be completed by volunteers and service program crews. 

  • Identify locations and opportunities to improve accessibility.

  • Share observations about updated working circles and operational capacity.

    PRACTICAL APPLICATIONS FOR RECREATION MANAGEMENT AND OPERATIONS

  • Compare NRM data with information provided elsewhere such as the forest website and the national recreation reservation system to identify needed corrections and updates. 

  • Assist in completing new and updating existing Operating Plans for recreation sites.  Work with Districts and/or Facilities Engineer to prepare simple schematics for water and wastewater system components. 

  • If time allows, use recreation site knowledge, photographs taken and NRM data to update recreation site descriptions, recreation fee proposals data, and the forest accessibility transition plan. 

  • Work with a crew on a recreation project (Forest Service or partner crew)

  • Work with a recreation technician performing routine operations and maintenance.

  • Assist in the preparation of contract documents for a recreation project.

    DESIRED KNOWLEDGE, SKILLS AND ABILITIES

  • Knowledge of recreation planning.

  • Knowledge of recreation facilities infrastructure and ability to conduct condition surveys.

  • Knowledge of or ability to learn outdoor accessibility standards and to conduct accessibility surveys.

  • Skills using web-based databases, and ability to quickly become proficient in using new programs.

  • Ability to review and assess a large array of data and develop recommendations.

  • Skilled at communicating orally, in writing, and graphically using various software. 

PARTICIPANTS WILL GAIN: 

  • A two-year hiring authority allowing interns to apply to internal Forest Service positions.

PARTICIPANTS SHOULD

  • Have an interest in natural resources, public service and connecting people to their public lands.

  • Be willing to foster a work environment that is safe, inclusive, respectful, rewarding and free from harassment of any kind.  

  • Be willing to drive up to three hours each way to project locations on a range of roads from interstates to gravel Forest Service roads (using Forest Service vehicle), and at times stay overnight in local hotels.

  • Be comfortable working alone, at times, in national forest recreation sites. 

Questions? Email Jaina at: jreed@gyfoundation.org.