Bridging Mountains Environmental Education Coordinator


Mountain Studies Institute


Durango, CO



Jeremy May


Program Overview: Led by the Colorado Alliance for Environmental Education (CAEE), the Environmental Education Corps (eeCorps) AmeriCorps Program places AmeriCorps members at organizations throughout Colorado to focus on increasing environmental literacy for PreK-12 students and implementing the goals outlined in the Colorado Environmental Education Plan. eeCorps works directly with teachers, schools, and EE providers to support them in expanding reach and increasing impact of EE programming, while providing access to equitable learning experiences for all PreK-12 students. eeCorps members provide direct service to improve outcomes in Environmental Stewardship and Education. AmeriCorps is a part of the Corporation for National & Community Service, often referred to as the “domestic Peace Corps.” AmeriCorps provides opportunities to improve lives and foster civic engagement all across the country.

This position will be located at Mountain Studies Institute (MSI) in Durango, CO. MSI is an independent not-for-profit mountain research and education center established in 2002 in Silverton, Colorado. MSI develops science that people can use to address environmental issues facing the San Juan Mountains. They conduct and facilitate research, provide educational opportunities and internships, and conduct environmental monitoring. They connect scientists and stakeholders across the San Juan Mountain region to go beyond scientific inquiry to the meaningful application of knowledge that makes a difference for the quality of the environment and their communities. 


Service Position Summary: The MSI Bridging Mountains Environmental Education Coordinator will be tasked with Developing and delivering place-based environmental education and stewardship activities centered around MSI’s community driven water, forest health, and climate related research and action. 


Essential Functions (Primary Responsibilities): eeCorps members engage with their Host Site organizations to develop, implement, and enhance programs, projects, and activities that will create progress towards eeCorps and Mountain Studies Institute’s goals. These duties include:

  • Conduct educator surveys as part of Bridging Mountains Education Needs Assessment; compile and analyze survey results to develop recommendations and disseminate the results to regional EE partner organizations. 
  • Lead water quality and forest health field trips with youth and adults. 
  • Develop forest health field trips and public event activities and help implement them; lead educational activities at public events such as Animas River Days, National Public Lands Day, and other events. 
  • Develop watershed health interpretive exhibits/activities related to the City of Durango interpretive plan for the ‘forestshed’. 
  • Advance MSI’s citizen science programs: PikaNet, Bighorn Sheep Monitoring, and Invasive Weed Monitoring.
  • Provide direct service to local students and teachers in the San Juan Mountain Region, as well as families and adults. 
  • Track progress and collect evaluation data for the program’s performance measures
  • Attend all eeCorps AmeriCorps trainings and orientations
  • Complete all eeCorps required National Days of Service projects
  • Complete and submit all necessary eeCorps  paperwork and reports by predetermined deadlines
  • Some local and out of town travel required


Marginal Functions (Secondary Responsibilities): Additional tasks include:

  • Develop innovative and creative media and other online material to achieve MSI’s outreach goals, normally accomplished through in person, hands-on activities, in ways that comply with safe social distancing.
  • Assist with stewardship and water quality and forest health research.


Physical, Emotional, and intellectual Demands:

  • The San Juan mountains reach over 14,000 ft in elevation, and our outreach activities involve outdoor field trips on and off trail. Activities may involve strenuous physical exercise, exposure to dangerous weather conditions, travel in mountain environments at high altitude, driving or riding as a passenger in motor vehicles including four-wheel drive vehicles, and use of potentially dangerous equipment and tools. The eeCorps member will lead youth activities in these mountain environments and should understand and/or be willing to learn and practice risk management in such environments.


Desired Qualifications:

  • Background in the natural sciences and/or education.
  • A passion for learning and the outdoors.
  • Ethic of national and community service and a strong desire to create positive change
  • Ability to communicate effectively both verbally and in writing; computer literate
  • High School Diploma or GED required, college graduate preferred
  • Ability to pass criminal history check
  • Reliable transportation & proof of auto insurance
  • U.S. Citizenship or lawful permanent resident status required  


Term of Service - Time Commitment: This is a full-time national and community service position requiring, at a minimum, a total of 1,700 hours during the year (approximately 40 hours/week.) The position begins August 24, 2020 and ends July 23, 2021. Flexible hours are required, including occasional evening and weekend commitments. Member must serve on Days of Service that take place on certain national holidays throughout the year. 


Training and Support Provided: eeCorps members receive significant training and experience in community engagement, project implementation, leadership, diverse populations, and more. Up to 20% of total hours served may be spent in applicable, approved training and professional development. Members will be supervised and supported by Jeremy May, as well as by Kat Riley, eeCorps Program Director. The 2020-21 cohort of eeCorps members serving throughout the region will act as additional resources and support for each other.


Location and Service Conditions: This position is based in Durango, CO, and may/will involve service at other locations in La Plata, Archuleta, San Juan, Montezuma, and Dolores counties. Position is direct service, and will involve frequent days of service (outdoors and/or in a school and/or community building.)  


Benefits: Full-time eeCorps members receive:

  • A living allowance of $14,900. Taxes are deducted and the living allowance is distributed twice per month by direct deposit to the member’s bank account.
  • Health insurance for full-time members, if eligible
  • Child care assistance for full-time members, if eligible
  • $300/ month in living expense assistance
  • An education award of $6,195 upon successful completion of term of service. It is possible to defer student loans while serving as an AmeriCorps member.
  • Mileage reimbursement for travel to required trainings and days of service
  • Ability to participate in regional EE leadership councils; option to obtain CAEE’s nationally-recognized Professional Environmental Educator Certification.
  • Non-tangible benefits including extensive training, valuable experience, networking, and the opportunity to serve the local community in a crucial area of need.


Diversity and Equal Opportunity: MSI is an Equal Opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, national origin, age, sex, religion, disability, sexual orientation, marital status, veteran status, gender identity or expression, or any other basis protected by local, state, or federal law. This policy applies with regard to all aspects of one’s employment, including hiring, transfer, promotion, compensation, eligibility for benefits, and termination.

If you are interested in applying to this position, please send your resume and a short cover letter outlining your interest in the program and commitment to national service to Kat Riley, AmeriCorps Program Director, at Please also attach a list of three (3) references, and a diversity and inclusion statement that is no longer than one page in length. Include “AmeriCorps MSI Application” in the subject line, and combine all application materials into a single PDF.