Assistant Ecologist via Idealist

Chicago, IL, US

The Assistant Ecologist will play a central role in the small, collaborative team that carries out TWI’s ecological restoration projects. This new full-time position with benefits will be based in our Chicago office and will provide project, research, and administrative support for our ecologists and site managers. This will be an excellent position for someone at the start of a career path in restoration ecology or a related field. The work will be carried out mostly during normal office hours and mostly at the Chicago office; some in-state travel and evening or weekend hours will be required. The Assistant Ecologist will report to TWI’s Senior Ecologist.

Duties and responsibilities:

  • Assist in ordering seed, plugs, and supplies for restoration projects.
  • Assist with data collection and management of TWI field research projects.
  • Maintain project-level financial information and project-milestone information, and help TWI’s development staff produce grant reports and applications.
  • Coordinate hiring processes for field restoration technicians at project sites.
  • Help coordinate and lead volunteer events, e.g. seed harvests, planting days, BioBlitzes, and other workdays.
  • Assist in the collection and processing of field survey data.
  • Check, enter, and conduct statistical analyses on collected data.
  • Help prepare journal articles and reports on experimental work and restoration progress.
  • Assist the Senior Ecologist and other program staff in preparing conference presentations: generating abstracts, preparing presentations and posters, etc.
  • Conduct library and/or online research into publications relevant to TWI’s work and provide synopses.
  • Present on TWI restoration results, lessons learned, and research findings at conferences and other venues.
  • Represent TWI at external meetings or work groups such as certain Chicago Wilderness committees.
  • Assist in developing plant species palettes for introductions into restored habitat for new or ongoing projects.
  • Assist restoration supervisors/site managers with seed sorting, mixing, and planting.
  • Work with the GIS Analyst to make and update maps of project sites.
  • Other duties as assigned by the Senior Ecologist.

Required qualifications:

Master’s degree in ecology, natural resource management, or related field either completed or near completion. (If not yet completed then hiring for this position could be contingent.)

Excellent attention to detail, and strong organizational and time management skills.

The ideal candidate will be a reliable self-starter with strong interpersonal skills and a positive attitude.

Strong written communication skills.

Solid skills with MS Word, Excel, and PowerPoint, and a familiarity with or the ability to learn database management and statistical analysis software.

Additional experience that is helpful but not required:

Two years’ professional experience in ecological restoration, natural resource management, or a related field.

Familiarity with and the ability to identify native Illinois flora, particularly prairie, savanna, and wetland species.

Paid and/or volunteer experience at an organization that carries out ecological restoration in the field.