2014 Plant Survey and Orchard Data Internship

Capitol Reef Field Station Sign

Job Description

The intern will work full-time with the Capitol Reef National Park Division of Resource Management & Science, assisting with field survey work of sensitive plant species and managing data related to the park's historic orchards.

Critical elements of the internship include but are not limited to the following major responsibilities:

Sensitive Resource Surveys and Monitoring:

Assist staff with field surveys for two federally listed cacti species and with establishing demographic monitoring plots around cacti. Cacti surveys require long hours in the field, slowly walking across the landscape searching for small cacti and recording data on these cacti using GPS data dictionaries or field data sheets. Candidate should enjoy being outdoors, be physically fit, have a methodical and patient personality, enjoy searching for "treasures", have GPS experience, and can accurately and legibly record data. Skills using GPS units, digital cameras and computer software (e.g., Microsoft Word, Access, Excel, ArcGIS) would be needed. Interns may also assist natural resource staff with spotted owl and peregrine falcon surveys, invasive plant control and cultural resource monitoring. Interns would be supervised by the park Biologist, but would be working primarily with the park Botanist. A general knowledge of plants of the Southwest would be helpful but not required. Work involves hiking off designated trails or routes, including hiking up to 10 miles per day. Weather conditions will vary from cold winds or rain in the early spring to temperatures nearing 100 degrees F in the summer. Other challenging field conditions include the potential for high winds and gnats or other biting insects. One or two weeks may be spent on horse packing assisted camp outs in the backcountry. Experience driving four-wheel drive vehicles on dirt roads would be beneficial, but not essential.

Historic Orchard Data Management:

The park's historic orchards contain over 2500 fruit and nut trees that are managed in a context to provide character to the historic district and provide local fruit picking. The orchard management intern will be involved in one year of a multi-year condition and planning project. The intern will be responsible for data management of the condition and planning project, including data entry and manipulation. Individual must be competent in the use of Microsoft Excel and ArcGIS including ArcCatalog and ArcMap to synchronize, update, and improve existing park databases regarding orchard resources. Daily activities may include data entry and manipulation, geospatial database creation, and resource mapping and visual representation. Some knowledge of horticulture is preferred, but not necessary if the candidate is willing to learn. These orchard management duties will be predominantly office based.

Job Duration

The internship runs from May 5 through August 15, 2014; five days/week (Monday-Friday with occasional schedule changes), approximately 15 weeks.

Obligations of the Intern

  • Complete some seasonal park employee on-site and online training.
  • Comply with CRFS and CRNP regulations, policies and procedures.
  • Complete projects and assignments on time.
  • Wear appropriate UVU clothing and maintain a professional appearance and demeanor.
  • As a representative of both UVU and the NPS, maintain a high level of professionalism and flexibility at all times.
  • Adhere to the specified dates of the agreement.
  • Follow all safety regulations and guidelines; practice safe work habits; properly check out, use, care for, and check in Park equipment, vehicles and property.


The internship provides a wage of $11.00/hour.


The Park provides the intern with one private bedroom in a coed multi-bedroom house with shared living, kitchen and bathroom facilities.

Intern qualifications

  • Must be a current student at Utah Valley University (preferably in junior or senior year of program).
  • Must have background and interest in areas of botany, horticulture, GIS work, outdoor leadership, and/or natural resources management.
  • Must be willing to live at Capitol Reef National Park throughout the duration of the internship.
  • Must be mature, independent, and self-motivated.
  • Must be able to hike, load materials, and carry out activities related to the UVU and NPS mission.

To Apply

Application materials must be submitted by Feb. 24, 2014.