The Arboretum at Penn State


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Natural Lands Program Assistant

Job Title

Natural Lands Program Assistant

Job Qualifications

1. Planning and Documentation: Work with supervisor to establish annual project work plans, including location and extent of project work areas, targets and timeframes for invasive plant removal and native plant introduction, and procurement lists for desirable woody and herbaceous species. Conduct field inventories of past plantings to determine survival and success rates. Monitor conditions inside and outside deer exclosure to assess extent of deer herbivory.

2. Restoration Activities: Lead targeted removal of non-native invasive plants and re-establish native plants in key natural areas. Lead efforts to maintain and improve walking trails, including facilitation of hazardous tree and limb removal near walking trails. Work with Director of Operations and external partner organizations to plan and execute controlled burns on prairie site.

3. Volunteer Management: Recruit, schedule, and supervise groups of student volunteers for weekend work sessions during the academic year. Publicize volunteer opportunities through flyers, listserv postings, and Arboretum website and social media. Plan activities for each session, and coordinate equipment and labor support as needed.

4. Project Communication:
a. Internal Communication: Schedule quarterly project committee meetings; develop and distribute agendas, minutes, and other committee materials.
b. External Communication: Collaborate in development of educational and interpretive materials, including project signage, printed collateral, and content for website and social media. Assist with development and delivery of educational programs, including guided seasonal wildflower and trail walks.

Education and Experience

Applicants should be enrolled in or have graduated from a degree program in Plant Science, Forest Science, Biology, Ecology, Environmental Resource Management, Landscape Architecture, or a related field of study. Experience with Microsoft Office is required. Experience with Adobe design software and/or mapping software such as ArcGIS will be considered an advantage. Previous experience with plant nomenclature and identification is preferred. Applicants should hold, or be willing to obtain, a PA Pesticide Applicator License (CORE and Category 18) within 6 months of hire. A valid driver’s license is required. This position involves physical work outdoors in variable weather conditions, and the incumbent will be required to bend, stoop, carry, and lift up to 40 lbs. in the course of their duties. Required background checks will be conducted prior to employment.

Position Application

• Applications must be submitted electronically via the Penn State Careers website at A direct link to the posting is as follows:

• Instructions for using the Penn State Careers website are available at

• This position is listed as Job # REQ_0000024356.

• Applicants must include a cover letter and resume in application materials.

• Qualified applicants will be contacted for in-person interviews.