Unpredictable, difficult, but sometimes rewarding job
AmeriCorps Northwest Service Corps Team Member (Former Employee) – Olympia, WA – December 1, 2017
A typical day at work: trail work for 8-10 hrs, not including travel time usually
What I learned: many trail work skills, as well as group/teamwork, resilience in the face of difficult situations and change of plans, various certifications including Wilderness First Aid, CPR, Chainsaw, Leave No Trace
Management: Our project manager was not ver organized or helpful with answering questions or giving us our schedules and project specs in advance. My crew leader was very good though.
Workplace culture: enjoyed working with my crew members
Hardest part: not knowing our schedules in advance and not being prepared for what the job entailed because the job description was nothing like what we actually did and the interviewer had no idea what it would be like either. We all thought it would be "front-country camping (car camping)", so when we ended up needing to backpack incredibly heavy backpacks into the backcountry for 9 days straight with no outside communication and no previous experience with backpacking... that was an unhappy surprise.
I also did not appreciate having to hike in the dark when we didn't know where we were going or how long it would take. I would have liked our project partners to have come with us and shown us the way, and for them to have prepared us for what we'd be doing better.
Most enjoyable: definitely the beautiful places we got to work, especially Shi Shi Beach, Hurricane Ridge, and many other places in Olympic NP, Coleville NF, and Columbia River Gorge. I also enjoyed my crew leader and crew members, I made good friends.
Got many useful certifications for free through NYC, made many friends, got to see many beautiful places, learned how to be calm in difficult situations and learned that I can get through hard times
Variable schedule, didn't know in advance where we were going or for how long, wasn't prepared for what the job entailed