Southwest Conservation Volunteer - Summer 2023 @ American Conservation Experience

Southwest Conservation Volunteer - Summer 2023



American Conservation Experience, a non-profit conservation corps with a divisional branch in Flagstaff, Arizona, is looking for volunteers to join our team of young adults serving on meaningful conservation projects throughout the Southwest. This opportunity is intended for those looking to learn valuable skills for their career while immersed in a community of like-minded young professionals from around the country. Volunteers typically serve for 4 weeks on projects including ecological restoration, habitat improvement, and trail maintenance and construction. While serving, volunteers typically have 6 days off between each project to enjoy Southwest's abundant beauty and recreational opportunities with their friends and colleagues. Take your first step towards beginning or advancing your career by applying with us today!

Start Dates:

  • April 17, 2023 - May 15, 2023
  • May 22, 2023 - June 10, 2023
  • June 12, 2023 - July 8, 2023

Flagstaff, Arizona

Projects take place throughout Arizona, Utah, Colorado, and Texas.

Common project locations include the cities of Flagstaff, Kingman, Sedona, Prescott, Tucson, Maricopa county, Grand Canyon National Park, Rainbow Bridge National Monument, and Goose Island State Park.

Schedule: Project schedules vary greatly, but typically volunteers serve 8 days on/ 6 days off, or 4 days on/ 3 days off. For remote projects, volunteers spend off-days nearer to their project location. Remote projects often last multiple project schedule cycles.


Volunteers will receive a Living Allowance of $100/week, paid bi-weekly.

ACE provides volunteers with food during all project days; volunteers are responsible for providing their own food on off-days.

ACE provides volunteers with free housing during their term of service. When working in or near Southwest, volunteers spend off days in our hostel-style housing in Flagstaff. When working remotely, volunteers will be provided housing in those remote locations. The volunteer will provide their own blankets/pillows/sleeping bags/towels.

Gear: ACE provides each volunteer with their own tent. The volunteer will provide their own sleeping bag, sleeping pad, rain gear, and hiking boots. Upon acceptance to the program, volunteers will receive a more extensive packing list. Weather can be highly variable, so plan to bring layers of warm clothing and adequate rain gear. Volunteers will have access to deeply discounted Pro Deals via Outdoor Prolink once they are offered and accept a position and will have the opportunity to purchase discounted gear prior to their arrival.

Travel: ACE provides transportation to and from worksites; personal vehicles are not necessary throughout the volunteer's term of service. ACE does not provide relocation assistance.

Position Description:

Volunteers serve in professionally supervised teams as they explore future outdoor careers, learn practical field skills, and develop confidence as emerging leaders in conservation. Volunteers are afforded opportunities to learn and train under the guidance of professional mentors within ACE while gaining invaluable career perspectives working alongside staff from the National Park Service, US Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management, US Fish and Wildlife Service, and many other stewards of our nation's public lands.

Field work and additional responsibilities might include but are not limited to:

  • Habitat restoration
  • Trail construction and maintenance
  • Dry and wet stone masonry
  • Reforestation
  • Forest thinning
  • Plant identification
  • Fencing
  • Invasive species removal
  • Swamping

Volunteers get experience with, or in conjunction with, the following tools and equipment, depending on their level of training:

  • Trail Maintenance: Pick mattocks, Pulaskis, shovels, single/double jacks, McLeods, single bit axes, rock bars, chisels, crosscut saws, and griphoists.
  • Restoration Equipment: Herbicide backpack sprayers, spray bottles, GPS units, and measuring tools.
  • Power Tools and Gas Powered Equipment: Chainsaws, brush-cutters, drills, saws, and compressors.

Qualifications: Applicants should be prepared to perform physically challenging labor on environmental and conservation projects for 10 hours a day. Applicants should expect to hike extended distances on rough terrain carrying backpacks, tools, and equipment and be prepared to spend 8 consecutive days in the field on each project. Volunteers will work in a variety of weather conditions, such as temperatures ranging from below- freezing to over 100 degrees Fahrenheit, high winds, intense sunshine, rain, and snow.


  • U.S. Citizen or permanent resident
  • Able and willing to work in a group
  • Able and willing to work outdoors in varying weather conditions and capable of hiking moderate distances in somewhat rough terrain during inclement weather conditions
  • ACE volunteers must verify that they are fully vaccinated for Covid-19 or have requested and been granted a medical or religious exemption to vaccination by the time they start their term.


  • Experience in hiking and navigation in steep terrain
  • Strong desire to enter the conservation field as a natural resource professional
  • Experience or interest in volunteering in local communities

Physical Demands, Work Environment and Working Conditions:

  • Physical Demands: Requires frequent sitting, standing, walking, hiking, carrying, using hands to handle or feel, reaching with hands and arms, talking and hearing. Manual dexterity required for the use of various tools or equipment. Required to stoop, kneel, climb stairs, and/or crouch. Ability to hike over rough terrain, and camp overnight under field conditions.
  • Vision Requirements: Close, distance, peripheral, and depth perception vision as well as the ability to focus, may be required.
  • Weight Lifted or Force Exerted : Frequently moves up to 25 lbs., ability to move up to 60 pounds.
  • Environmental: Outdoor and indoor conditions. Work environment conditions can frequently change working under adverse weather conditions and in various climates.
  • Noise Environment : Moderate to high noise, such as gas-powered chainsaws and other hand and power tools.
  • Travel: This position requires domestic travel.

Environmental Conditions/Hazards: The ACE volunteer(s) may encounter environmental conditions/hazards, including extreme heat or cold, rocky terrain, swamp or wetland conditions, biting insects, and potentially dangerous wildlife. The volunteer is expected to conduct duties in a safe and orderly manner so as not to endanger themself, fellow staff/members, or resources.

The volunteer must be willing to represent ACE in a professional, positive, and enthusiastic manner. ACE has a zero-tolerance policy for illegal drugs and underage drinking. ACE reserves the right to require drug testing.

To Apply: Please submit a thoughtful resume, complete a motivational statement (instructions are provided when applying) OR upload a cover letter, and provide at least 2 references that are either professional or from a community leader (e.g., colleagues, teachers, counselors, religious leaders, career advisors) using the APPLY NOW section located on the upper right-hand corner of the position listing on our website:

NOTE: Early consideration will be given as applications are received. This position may close at any time. If you have any questions regarding this position, please contact Olivia Newell-Bauer at onewell-

EEO: American Conservation Experience provides equal employment opportunities (EEO) to all employees and applicants for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, or genetics. In addition to federal law requirements, American Conservation Experience complies with applicable state and local laws governing nondiscrimination in employment in every location in which the company has facilities.

Entry-level, Volunteer

Nonprofit- NGO



Flagstaff, AZ, USA




2023-03-09 00:00