Seasonal Field Educator for Island Residential Programs

The Chesapeake Bay Foundation seeks 1 seasonal field educator for the upcoming Fall 2017 and Spring 2018 field seasons. The seasonal field educator will live and teach at one of our four island centers. The position includes housing and a monthly stipend.

About the Chesapeake Bay Foundation

Celebrating its 50th anniversary, the Chesapeake Bay Foundation (CBF) is the nation’s leading conservation organization dedicated solely to restoring and protecting the Chesapeake Bay, our nation’s largest estuary. With over 230,000 members, an annual operating budget of $26 million, a $55 million endowment, CBF’s 185 full time staff work in offices in Annapolis and Easton, MD; Richmond and Virginia Beach, VA; Harrisburg, PA; Washington, DC; and in 15 field education program locations across the Bay watershed

CBF's headquarters - the Philip Merrill Environmental Center – in Annapolis is the world’s first USGBC LEED platinum building. In 2014, CBF opened the Brock Environmental Center in Virginia Beach; the Brock Center is the tenth certified Living Building and one of the most energy efficient, environmentally smart buildings in the world.

CBF Environmental Education

Approximately 35,000 students and teachers participate each year in CBF’s education field experiences or teacher professional learning. 

The Bay, and its watershed, is our classroom and CBF environmental educators are responsible for bringing the Bay alive to students.  We strive to make a lasting impression about the excitement and vulnerability of the Bay. 

Each of CBF’s 15 education programs has its own individual character. The field experience options run the gamut from our urban boat programs in Baltimore and Hampton Roads to Pennsylvania canoe programs to remote island-based centers.  We use hands-on experiential teaching techniques to educate students about the health of the Bay and connect them back to their local environment.  Educators promote and develop citizen knowledge about the Bay by providing unforgettable, hands-on, student lead experiences that inspire them with a commitment to take action for the restoration of the Bay.

The education department is comprised of field programs, Teacher and Principal Professional Learning, and Student Leadership.  All of these components work closely to educate and empower students to take action towards “Saving the Bay.” 

Context of the Position

The seasonal educators will live and work at one of the following centers:

The Fox Island Education Center is located on a remote salt marsh island in the lower Chesapeake Bay, where the Tangier and Pocomoke Sounds converge.  The island is compromised completely of tidal salt marsh, with no trees or high ground.  This center provides participants access to some of the Bay’s most pristine areas.  Two hundred and forty-five acres of unspoiled marshland and surrounding water that teem with life provide opportunities for exploration by foot, canoe and workboat.  Access to Fox Island requires a 45-minute boat trip from Crisfield, MD (pop. 2,500).  Built in 1929 as a hunting and fishing lodge, the center operates a residential program for 6th - 12th grade students and teachers.  This rustic education center houses up to 24 people and is the only structure on an uninhabited island.  The lodge’s location, history and simple nature make it a truly magical experience for students and teachers.  The full-time, on-site staff consists of a Program Manager, Captain, and seasonal educator who are all responsible for conducting all field experiences.

The Smith Island Education Center is located in Tylerton, Maryland, the largest inhabited offshore island in the Bay.  It is an 8-mile x 4-mile island consisting primarily of virgin estuarine marsh crisscrossed by a maze of guts, creeks, and thoroughfares.  The three island communities have a total population of 300 people.  CBF owns two houses in the community of Tylerton, from which we operate a residential environmental education center for groups of up to 30 students and/or adults.  The center incorporates canoes, a skiff, and a 40-foot workboat into the program.  The full-time, on-site staff consists of a Program Manager, Assistant Manager, and Captain who are all responsible for conducting all field experiences.

The Karen E. Noonan Center for Environmental Education at Bishops Head (Crocheron, MD) Bishops Head is a 20-acre site on a peninsula in Dorchester County, south of Cambridge, MD.  The site is part of a 2,278-acre parcel of land owned by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.  The main building was once one of the famous gunning clubs on the Bay and the staff house was transported from its original location on nearby Holland’s Island over 100 years ago. The center has a 40-foot workboat, canoes, a pier, and approximately 100 feet of beachfront.  The full-time, on-site staff consists of a Program Manager, Captain, and seasonal educator who are all responsible for conducting all field experiences. 

The Port Isobel Education Center is a 250-acre island that is situated in the heart of the Tangier Island archipelago.  The island showcases a variety of estuarine habitats such as: marshes, a pine forest, and a ¼ mile beach.  The program serves 6th-12th grade students, teachers, and other adult groups.  The program is focused on understanding the delicate relationship between the ecosystem and the watermen community of Tangier.  There is also a pier, 42-foot workboat and a fleet of canoes that are used with all participants.  The center utilizes a dormitory, a dining/meeting hall, and staff housing.  The full-time, on-site staff consists of a Program Manager, Captain, and seasonal educator who are all responsible for conducting all field experiences. 

Essential Functions

•    Ability to live at one of CBF’s Island Residential Centers for the term of the position
•    Conduct three-day ecology and environmental science field experiences for school aged groups (grades 6-12 typically) and adults 
•    Assist in the planning and implementation based upon state standards and the needs of the teacher
•    Teach aboard a CBF education workboat, in canoes and along the water’s edge.  The residential island center serves as the base for the program. 
•    Teach a wide array of participants (students, teachers, donors, media representatives, politicians, members)
•    Help with routine maintenance, upkeep, cleaning and projects in compliance with safety checklists
•    Ensure safe learning environment for participants 
•    Create a fun, experiential environment for all participants
•    Understand and convey the mission of the Foundation
•    Be a role model for students and participants
•    Develop and maintain education materials and equipment
•    Work as a team within the individual field program and the education department
•    This physically-demanding position involves frequent weekend work & year-round exposure to the elements
•    Housing is provided and the Seasonal Educator must live on-site for the duration of the term

Professional Experience and Qualifications

Successful Candidate should possess the following:
•    Bachelor’s degree in education, environmental science, biology, environmental studies, or related field, or relevant experience required
•    Experience teaching in either a formal or non-formal setting, preferred
•    A strong desire to teach in the field/outdoors (under all weather conditions) and work with students on a daily basis
•    Experience on boats & boater safety certification, preferred
•    Exceptional communication and interpersonal skills
•    Collaborative work style
•    Energy, enthusiasm, and passion for students and the environment 
•    Creativity, humor and self-confidence
•    Desire and ability to relate to people of all ages and backgrounds
•    Knowledge of environmental issues facing the Bay
•    Knowledge of Chesapeake Bay Foundation & the Education Department mission, strategic plans & goals, a plus
•    Strong commitment to safety and maintenance

Physical Requirements:
•    Physical ability to lift and carry heavy objects-at least 45 pounds (canoes and other equipment)
•    This physically demanding position involves year-round exposure to the elements
•    Ability to live on-site at an Island Center for the duration of the term
•    Ability to work evenings and/or weekends
•    Ability to travel to attend trainings & meetings

•    Must pass a criminal background check
•    All education staff participate in a pre-employment & random drug screening program per the requirements of the US Coast Guard

How to Apply

To apply, please submit a cover letter, resume, and contact information for (3) references by September 27th to:
Seasonal_2017/Education Jobs
Chesapeake Bay Foundation

The Chesapeake Bay Foundation is an Equal Opportunity Employer.

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