Watershed Educator

Cornell University

Shokan, NY, US

Cornell Cooperative Extension of Ulster County (CCEUC) is seeking a part-time, 24 hours/week, Watershed Educator to work with the Ashokan Watershed Stream Management Program (AWSMP). This a temporary position for 24 weeks and will be located at the AWSMP office in Shokan, NY.

The Watershed Educator delivers educational activities at watershed community, volunteer, and school events. The educator will prepare written materials for several projects, including displays, handouts, and websites on floodplain and stream management topics. The Watershed Educator will assist with delivery of a Japanese knotweed (invasive plant) control project in the upper Esopus Creek. As directed by the supervisor and as time permits, the Watershed Educator may assist partner agencies with stream assessment and fish community surveys; installation of plantings; and plant and project monitoring.

The Ashokan Reservoir watershed is located in the Catskills region of Ulster County and is part of the New York City Water Supply System for 9 million New Yorkers. The AWSMP works in partnership with communities to protect and restore stream corridor stability and ecosystem integrity in the watershed. The overall program engages in stream assessment, engineered stream restoration projects, technical education and public outreach, research and monitoring, community grants, flood hazard mitigation planning, and more.

The AWSMP office is open to the public from 8:00-4:30 M-F. The field office is shared by staff and interns from several government agencies participating in the AWSMP, including CCEUC, Ulster County Soil and Water Conservation District, NYC Department of Environmental Protection, and the Ulster County Department of Environment.

The temporary, part-time Watershed Educator (24 hours/week) will report to CCEUC’s Resource Educator with the AWSMP.   Hourly rate is $17.00 and is benefits eligible.


  • Bachelor’s or equivalent education in a relevant field – Environmental Studies, Science, Communications, Public Policy, or Education.
  • Experience relevant to the role of the position, required.
  • Coursework in environmental science or policy highly preferred.
  • Basic Microsoft Word software and computer skills.
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills.
  •  Must meet motor vehicle record requirements and have a valid driver’s license as travel is required.
  • Ability to use logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions and approaches to problems.
  • Ability to establish and follow detailed work procedures, set goals, initiate, plan, prioritize, organize work and manage time effectively;
  • Orderly thinking targeted at managing the various aspects of the position;
  • Ability to work under pressure and meet deadlines;
  • Ability to handle a multitude of administrative tasks at the same time without compromising on quality or work;
  • Must demonstrate a high degree of accuracy, integrity, sound professional judgment, tact, and maturity to effectively relate to people in order to accomplish Association’s goals;
  • Must be able to work cooperatively in a team effort on a day to day basis.

Responsibilities/Essential Functions: 

Program Delivery – 45%

  • Provide educational activities while operating the AWSMP and CCEUC booth/table at community events (Shandaken Day, Olive Day, Ulster County Fair, and more), distribute literature, communicate information about the AWSMP to members of the public, and provide education on stream management topics.
  • Carry out educational activities at community and school events and watershed conferences, including stream table demonstrations, floodplain model demonstrations, stream assessment demonstrations, and macroinvertebrate sampling and identification, and other watershed/stream science topics for a range of age-groups from children to adults.
  • Provide accurate instruction on stream and floodplain management topics. Deliver science-based information and materials developed by the AWSMP and research partners. Defer technical questions to appropriate experts and provide contact information to participants.
  • May occasionally apply subject matter knowledge to the creation of lesson plans.
  • Interact respectfully with members of the public, particularly when differences of opinion are expressed.
  • Staff displays and tables at the Ashokan Watershed Conference and Catskill Environmental Research and Monitoring (CERM) conferences to provide program delivery.
  • In preparation for community and volunteer events, draft educational materials from existing resources for program delivery. 
  • Research and summarize, in writing and verbally, information on topics related to stream and floodplain management for use in newsletters, fact sheets, presentations, and display materials. Consult official documents online, via libraries, and using phone or in-person interviews with experts. Topics are likely to include invasive species management, various stream science topics, flooding history in the watershed, floodplain management history, flood response, and federal and state policy related to stream and floodplain management.

Program Direction and Management – 10%

  • Provide information on the feasibility of program delivery during the planning of educational programs.
  • Provide input on the structure of delivering educational programs using different methods.
  • Provide input on program budget needs.
  • Provide guidance and direction to volunteers at volunteer events such as riparian buffer plantings, invasive species removal, riparian seed collection, and fishing days. Provide direction to volunteers on proper use of safety equipment and management of equipment and plant materials.
  • Become familiar and assist with implementation of Extension volunteer and risk management policy and assist with administration of these policies.
  • During the delivery of projects, solve problems and resolve conflicts that arise, utilizing appropriate policies and procedures.
  • Provide input on project communication strategies.
  • Perform basic office administrative tasks as necessary, including copying, accurately receiving and logging phone calls, and setting up and taking down audio-visual equipment and displays for meetings and events.
  • Conscientiously use the program office, supplies, and equipment for work-related tasks only. Perform office work during office hours of 8:00-4:30. Work evening and weekend events as directed by and with permission of the Resource Educator.
  • Maintain awareness of and adhere to workplace safety procedures.

Coordination and Operations – 40%

  • Assist with scheduling project meetings for established projects.
  • Distribute project meeting notes.
  • Notify participants and schedule field activities and data collection efforts with stakeholders.
  • Keep project staff and volunteers informed of project schedules.
  • Submit program related expense receipts for recording.
  • Assist with event registration.
  • Provide logistical information to event participants.
  • Support implementation of project marketing, such as distribution of flyers, press releases, mailings and internet postings.
  • Prepare, transport, and manage event supplies as directed by the Resource Educator.
  • Organize and manage educational and project materials using established procedures. Maintain organized, appropriately named/labeled, and updated databases and accurate records in shared server and work spaces.
  • Set-up and takedown a pop-up tent and table, set-up tabletop displays, and set-up electricity and water as needed for demonstrations at educational events.
  • At events, obtain participation information needed for federal reporting and program contact database development.
  • Photograph activities during community events and meetings.
  • Assist with obtaining photo documentation of high water marks and other flood damages following flood events. Receive, log, and electronically organize and file flood damage photos and information received from the public. Research and obtain flood photos as needed for specific publications.
  • Develop and revise task lists and schedules for assigned projects.
  • As directed by the Resource Educator and as time permits, assist partner agencies with surveys of potential bioengineering projects and fish communities; installation of plantings; and plant and project monitoring.
  • Take and prepare accurate project meeting notes. Ensure notes are free of spelling and grammar errors.

Professional Improvement and other duties as assigned – 5%

  • In cooperation with Supervisor, jointly develop and pursue a professional development plan as a means to increase competencies relative to position duties and program priorities.
  • Attend content area trainings as necessary to maintain or enhance knowledge and skills.
  • Participate in required orientation programs and attend in-services as necessary to stay current and involved in relation to program responsibilities.
  • Actively participate in Association and program staff meetings.

EEO/EPO, Health & Safety and PolicyApplies to all duties and functions

  • Appreciate and embrace diversity in all interactions with clientele, staff, volunteers and the public.
  • Assist the Cornell Cooperative Extension system in reaching out to diverse audiences and embracing diversity in all interactions with clientele, staff, volunteers and the public.  Find ways to involve audiences traditionally under-represented in the design and development stages of new program initiatives with the goal of increasing involvement from traditionally under-represented audiences.
  • Represent Cornell Cooperative Extension to the public, community leaders, colleagues, volunteers, members of Cornell University faculty and staff, government officials and the general public in a professional manner. 
  • Be aware of, and adhere to, established Cornell Cooperative Extension policies and procedures and Skills for Success.
  • Contribute to the overall success of the organization by performing all assigned duties in a professional, timely, and accurate manner.
  • Support the association to maintain a safe working environment.
  • Be familiar and strive to follow any applicable federal, state, local regulations, association health and safety policy/procedure/requirement and standard.
  • Act proactively to prevent accidents/injuries and communicate hazards to supervisors when identified.

The temporary, part-time Watershed Educator, 24 hours/week for 24 weeks, will report to CCEUC’s Resource Educator with the AWSMP.   Hourly rate is $17.00 and is benefits eligible.

How To ApplyApplicants (including current employees of other Cornell Cooperative Extension Associations) must apply online through the APPLY button in this job posting. Current employees of Cornell Cooperative Extension Ulster County are considered internal applicants and must apply online through their Workday account which may be accessed here: http://workday.cornell.edu/

All applicants are requested to submit a cover letter, resume and indicate three individuals who may be contacted as a reference.  Please consider indicating in your application all information you feel would be helpful for selection committee members to know.   Once the application is submitted you will NOT be able to change your submission or add attachments. Be sure that you have followed all directions and requirements listed in the job posting.  For instructions, visit:


All applications must be received on-line by March 23, 2017. Position closing dates may change based on Association needs.

The Association may make reasonable accommodations to enable applicants to participate in the hiring process and employees to perform the essential functions of their job. If you require an accommodation so you may participate in the selection process you are encouraged to contact Cornell Cooperative Extension Administrative Systems at (607) 255-2117, or via email at: [email protected] 

For additional questions please contact Leah Cadwallader, Regional Human Resources Manager, e-mail [email protected] or (845) 340-3990×314.

Job Title:

Association Tmp Program


No Grade – Hourly

Pay Rate Type:



Contact Name:

Leah Cadwallader

Number of Openings:


Cornell Cooperative Extension is a collaboration among Cornell University, the United States Department of Agriculture, the State of New York, and the residents of New York State.  Per NYS Law, county and regional extension service associations are subordinate government agencies.  This employment opportunity is with the entities listed and not with Cornell University.

Cornell Cooperative Extension is an employer and educator recognized for valuing AA/EEO, Protected Veterans, and Individuals with Disabilities.  Individuals who bring a diverse perspective and are support of diversity are strongly encouraged to apply.