Environmental Educator (AmeriCorps)
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 is based at the Metropolitan State University of Denver, which is a Hispanic Serving Institution with an urban commuter population. This position will be housed under the Center for Advanced STEM Education under a project called “A Community-based Approach to Engaging Students and Teachers in Effective STEM Education” (NSF ITEST grant #1615193). There is a focus on STEM equity content and pedagogy throughout our project. Service Position Summary: Our work in K-12 student EE research is primarily through the teachers from across the state who have attended our workshops and are applying what they learned in their own classrooms. The Environmental Educator will utilize this network of teachers to connect with and support K-12 students who are doing EE to investigate and address relevant local challenges. The focus is on students who have less access to such opportunities and need support developing their confidence and competence. 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 Metropolitan State University of Denver’s goals. These duties include: Establish communications with our statewide teacher network Collect and analyze data from the teachers on the EE-based research they are doing with their students to research and address local issues Support the students’ research through a combination of in-person and remote meetings Learn about and tap into families’ and communities’ funds of knowledge to incorporate in the students’ projects and to help shape our work overall Collaborate with the teachers to arrange appropriate ways for the students to showcase their research, sharing their findings with the public and developing greater self-efficacy Provide direct service to elementary and secondary students whose teachers have participated in our workshops 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: Communicate regularly with the project team Physical, Emotional, and intellectual Demands:Must be professional at all times since the member will be interacting with students and families; ability to be flexible to working with a range of age groups; ability to think innovatively since there is a fair degree of self-direction required for this position. Desired Qualifications: Multiple languages a plus Interacts well with children from diverse communities Background work in equity and social/environmental justice 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 National Service Criminal History Check Reliable transportation & proof of auto insurance U.S. Citizenship or lawful permanent resident status required Individuals that represent marginalized identities and the differently abled are strongly encouraged to apply 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 35-40 hours/week.) The position begins August 24, 2020 and ends August 4, 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 Dr. Janelle Johnson at Metropolitan State University of Denver, 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 at Metropolitan State University of Denver, 890 Auraria Pkwy, Denver, CO. 80204, and may/will involve service at other locations across the state. 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 will 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 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 Mileage reimbursement to and from the service site Option to obtain CAEE’s nationally-recognized Professional Environmental Educator Certification; ability to participate in regional EE leadership councils 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: The MSU Denver School of Education actively promotes justice through diversity, equity and inclusion as critically important to its success. A major strength of our community is its ongoing commitment to recruit, support, and educate students, staff and faculty from different backgrounds, cultures and perspectives. We acknowledge the present and historical systems of oppression and marginalization that permeate all levels of society and believe these structures of power and privilege need to be deeply understood by all members of our SOE community. We are committed to actively dismantling these systems and barriers within our SOE. We seek to create an environment that invites honest and respectful dialogue, treats community members with dignity and respect, and manage tensions and differing viewpoints with thoughtful engagement, conversation and inquiry.