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Thread: A New Beginning....

  1. #1
    Ranger OakAshandThorn's Avatar
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    A New Beginning....

    Greetings, chaps! I've been away for awhile - not to worry, everything has been going grand, and today, things just got stupendous. Itís official: it is my great pleasure to announce to you all that I will be heading down to Mark Twain National Forest in Missouri for a 6 month Wilderness Ranger internship with the Student Conservation Association. I just got the confirmation call today after an interview yesterday, and I thought I would share the good news with you .

    Sooooooo....I imagine most of you will be wondering, "Now what on Earth is the Student Conservation Association????", so I'll go over the essentials with you:
    The Student Conservation Association, or SCA, is 'America's Conservation Corps. Our members protect and restore national parks, marine sanctuaries, cultural landmarks and community green spaces in all 50 states.' It's a program that works with the federal government, specifically the Department of the Interior, which includes the Bureau of Land Management, the National Park Service, United States Forest Service, and the United States Fish and Wildlife Service. More information can be found on their website - http://thesca.org/about and http://thesca.org/about/work-sca

    The internships are expense-paid, and many positions offer various training opportunities, such as chainsaw and crosscut saw certifications, that can cement the foundation for a career with any branch of the Dept of the Interior. The program is a fantastic opportunity for college students looking to do some work between semesters and-or earn money to pay for college tuition and loans (via AmeriCorps, a partner of the SCA), or for any young person, such as myself, looking to advance themselves into a career with agencies such as the National Park Service.

    For me, I wanted to be careful after high school - I didn't want to be roped into the "mus attend college" bandwagon spouted by every guidance counselor in the school because I knew of the very real danger of finding one's self in debt, or at the worst, having to drop out of college an struggle to find part-time employment. College tuition here can cost a tremendous amount to attend a decent school. I would much rather tread carefully than charge forward and hope for the best. During high school, I had different intentions, but over time I have come to the realisation that college isn't for everyone, and I don't need a college degree to be successful for the field of interest I wish to pursue. That said, it is my intention to pursue my ambitions and turn them into realities .

    Now then, onto the details of my new work station from SCA's website:

    Wilderness Ranger Intern

    This position is located on The Mark Twain National Forest, and covers the Potosi/Fredericktown and Doniphan/ Eleven Point Ranger Districts. Incumbent performs a variety of technical work in support of the unit wilderness program in the area of recreation, ecology, data collection, and trails.


    Major Duties:

    Performs inventorying and monitoring of specific resources for Limits of Acceptable Change process.

    Inspects assigned areas to determine compliance with regulations or specifications. Explains or enforces use regulations according to Wilderness Act. Prepares reports on conditions of camps and facilities. Maintains visitors use records and prepares visitors use information for data processing.

    Assist agency personnel with violation information. Collects evidence and provides documentation for cases of misuse of wilderness areas. Documents destruction to or impacts on campsites. Analyzes ways to educate users.

    Identifies restoration projects for planning future restoration projects.

    Works closely with supervisor to ensure all administrative tasks are accomplished promptly and efficiently. Writes responses to general inquiries regarding wilderness management. Organizes or maintains wilderness library of current issues, technical articles, maps and slides.

    Inventories signs and check for accuracy and maintenance level. Gathers specific data on wilderness conditions.

    Educates user groups on ďLeave No TraceĒ camping techniques and packing out garbage. Responsible for curtailing the improper management of human waste and educating people on importance of campsites placed away from water sources.

    Work is performed outdoors where there is exposure to extremes of weather and temperature. Work area varies from established administrative areas to wilderness areas. Work requires the use of safety equipment such as tools, gloves, goggles and hard hat. Requires working and living under primitive conditions.


    Training Opportunities:

    Wilderness Training
    Saw training (crosscut and chainsaw)
    Trail Maintenance Training
    Wild land Fire training
    Federal government defensive driving training

    That pretty much covers it at a glance. My accommodations will be on-site, and I will receive a healthy weekly living allowance stipend ($160-$220). After completing the wildland fire training, I will be paid $16/h on top of it all by the Forest Service. Health insurance is optional, but is provided by Blue Cross Blue Shield, which is standard for all SCA and federal government internships and jobs.

    I start work officially the first week of May. I canít express adequately my joy and anticipation of this opportunity. My ambitions are becoming a reality .

    That said, this is certainly not an end to my blog nor my posting here, though I cannot promise Iíll be able to post frequently with a 40 hour a week schedule. However, Iíll post as often as I can, and Iíll try to show the work that Iíll be doing. I am very much looking forward to this .

    On a final note, and slightly off-topic, I have other posts that are overdue, including a primitive bushcraft article, and those will be coming out sometime in the near future. So stay tuned .
    My blog, New England Bushcraft

    "Give me six hours to chop down a tree, and I will spend the first four sharpening the axe."
    ~ Abraham Lincoln

    "Be prepared, not scared."
    ~ Cody Lundin

  2. #2
    Trapper
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    Oh gratz - that all sounds like a wonderful opportunity
    On a planet that increasingly resembles one huge Maximum Security prison, the only intelligent choice is to plan a jail break.

    Robert Anton Wilson

  3. #3
    Samuel Hearne
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    OAT go for it and enjoy while learning keep us updated on how you get on.

  4. #4
    Natural Born Bushcrafter Woody's Avatar
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    Wow, that sounds like a great opportunity, and it sounds like you are just as smart as you are lucky.
    Smart for choosing a path (career) that you love.

    ( When you love your job, money is just a bonus...)


    ... and lucky for living on a continent so vast and diverse in Natural beauty , that it would be silly not to choose this type of education.

    Keep following your dreams, it will all come true.

    ...lucky sod ...

  5. #5
    Ranger OakAshandThorn's Avatar
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    Thanks, guys . It will certainly be an adventure.
    I was also offered a position near D.C. in the Chesepeake and Ohio Canal National Historic Park as a rare plant management intern for the National Park Service, but I turned them down in favour of Mark Twain National Forest. Lots of good training opportunities, and it all adds up and makes me more and more valuable as a candidate for future positions and ultimately a career path.
    My blog, New England Bushcraft

    "Give me six hours to chop down a tree, and I will spend the first four sharpening the axe."
    ~ Abraham Lincoln

    "Be prepared, not scared."
    ~ Cody Lundin

  6. #6
    Ent FishyFolk's Avatar
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    Congratulations :-)
    And you can always get a degree later in life. I am doing mine now, at age 45, after farting about over half the world :-)
    Victory awaits the one, that has everything in order - luck we call it
    Defeat is an absolute consequense for the one that have neglected to do the necessary preparations - bad luck we call it
    (Roald Amundsen)

    Bumbling Bushcraft on Youtube
    Nordisk Bushcraft - The Nordic bushcraft blog and forum

  7. #7
    Moderator jus_young's Avatar
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    Congratulations OAT. Live you dreams

  8. #8
    Trapper Ichneumon's Avatar
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    Congratulations and well done. I think most on this forum will be quite jealous.
    ďIf the apple won't fall - go shake the tree.Ē
    ― Isaac Newton

  9. #9
    One with Nature
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    hello OakAshAndThorn,
    Congratulations Bro. Will look forward to the photo's of you in your Smokey Bear bush hat.. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l3PhVQmRdKk
    Regards
    David

  10. #10
    Ranger Ehecatl's Avatar
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    Well done! I look forward to reading your updates.
    "If you were to ask me what I consider to be my finest achievement, I could answer the question without hesitation: teaching." ~ Raymond Blanc.

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