River Stewards of Tomorrow Watershed Conservation Internship

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Deadline to Apply:

Friday, April 2, 2021, 11:00pm


Cornwall Bridge, CT
United States

Job Category:


Job Type:


Job Description:

The Housatonic Valley Association (HVA) is seeking applications for our River Stewards of Tomorrow Watershed Conservation Internship positions, available for summer 2021. River Stewards will work on a variety of projects related to water resource management, human dimensions, wildlife conservation, and land protection. River Stewards will be based out of the office in Cornwall Bridge, CT and work in the Connecticut, Massachusetts, and New York portions of the watershed. Each River Steward position lasts at minimum 10 weeks from May –August. See a Story Map about the position created by one of our 2018 interns here.

Internship Overview: The 2021 River Stewards will be supervised by HVA’s Conservation Projects Managers, but may also be asked to work with other staff as needed. Work will include a mix of office and field-based activities (approximately 90% field-based and 10% office-based). Projects that the intern may be involved with include but aren’t limited to the following (in order of proportion of time spent):

  • Stream Reach Assessments: The River Stewards will assist HVA staff in the field toconduct visual surveys (“streamwalks”) along important stream reaches to documentthreats and identify restoration opportunities. Rapid screening water quality tests will beconducted at all suspicious outfalls. Stream walks will occur primarily in southernConnecticut, in the Pootatuck subwatershed. River Stewards will occasionally assist inpost-assessment data management and processing.
  • Environmental Monitoring(outfall screening and pollution trackdown): The RiverStewards will have the chance to conduct water quality monitoring, includingcollectingwater samples for chemical analysis. Environmental monitoring will be done in the StillRiver subwatershed.
  • Road-Stream Crossing Assessments in the Naugatuck Valley: River Stewards will visitand assess bridges and culverts(using the North Atlantic Aquatic ConnectivityCollaborative protocol)in the Naugatuck Valley region of Connecticut to identify barriersto fish and wildlife passage, and assist with post-assessment data management andprocessing.
  • Culvert Rod and Level Surveys: River Stewards may have the opportunity to assist HVAfull-time staff in collecting detailed data on existing structures and stream geomorphicprofiles, at priority culvert replacement sites. Data will be collected using a rod andprism, a Leica FlexLine TS09 Total Station,and a Trimble data collector,and will beused to create preliminary designs for replacement structures.
  • Restoration project monitoring and maintenance: River Stewards will assist withriparian and aquatic restoration projects(e.g., livewillow staking)and conductmaintenance activities like weeding and watering. Sometimes this will be in conjunctionwith our high school youth program called Still River Watershed Connections.Occasional weekend work required.
  • River Information and Outreach (RIO) Program: July 4thand occasional weekendwork required. River Stewards will be asked to help the RIO Stewards on July 4thandother weekend days as necessary.This work involves traveling among popularHousatonic River access sites along Route 7 (New Milford toFalls Village, CT) and engaging with site users. Tasks will include informing users of the site rules, conducting outreach about stewardship of the river and land, and answering any questions. River Stewards may also be asked to help RIO Stewards with community events throughout the summer.

Qualifications: Candidates must be detail-oriented, highly-motivated, passionate about watershed conservation, and able to succeedboth independently and as part of a team.In addition, the ideal candidatewillpossess:

  • Enthusiasm foroutdoor field work, including workingunder potentially inclementenvironmental conditions(hot, rainy, etc.);
  • Strong interpersonal skills, and the ability to represent HVA in a professional manner;
  • Strong organization and data management skills, and ability to follow detailed protocols;
  • Ability to problem-solve and think creatively while out in the field.

Requirements: Daily access to a reliable personal vehicle is a requirement of the position (HVA does not have a field vehicle, so all field work, includingany workin New Yorkand Massachusetts,will be done in personal cars with mileage reimbursements). The intern must also be physically able to participate in potentially strenuous field work(i.e., physically active work outside for several hours at a time during the heat of the summer).

Position Start Date:

Monday, May 24, 2021

Job Duration:


How to Apply:

Application Procedure: Interested candidates should submit the following materials via email(ideally as a single PDF, titled “[YourLastName]_HVARiverSteward”):

1.COVERLETTER explaining your interest and qualifications



Job Compensation:


Compensation Information:

Compensation: The intern will be provided with a $5,000 stipend for the course of the internship. Work related travel will be compensated at a rate of $0.48/mile. Housing is not provided. HVA will assist successful applicants in finding summer lodging near the HVA office

Contact Name:

Lindsay Larson

Contact Email: