POSITION DETAILS

Position Title: Geology Assistant
Park Unit: North Cascades National Park Service Complex
Location:
Sedro-Woolley, Washington
Number of positions available: 1
Can this position be fully remote: NO

INTERNSHIP DATES AND LENGTH
Duration: 52 Weeks
Start Date: 1/21/2024
Flexible Start Date:
YES

LIVING AND RELOCATION ALLOWANCE:
Weekly Stipend: $ 625.00
Relocation Allowance: $ 625.00

POSITION DESCRIPTION
The intern will support the North Coast and Cascades Network's (NCCN) Long-term Glacier Monitoring Program, which monitors glaciers and glacier mass balance at North Cascades, Mount Rainier and Olympic national parks. This program has been studying glacier change for over 30 years, by measuring mass balance of 8 glaciers at the three parks, quantifying changes in glacier area and their contributions to regional hydrology.

Interns will have the opportunity to work directly with multiple aspects of a glacier mass balance monitoring program. Intern duties will be focused on all aspects of data management, including entry, processing, quality review and analysis. Data includes both field generated and spatial derived. Duties will include processing of photogrammetry datasets from recent surveys of glaciated terrain to create high resolution digital elevation models. Accurate DEMs are central to the interpolating glaciological field data collected by the monitoring program.


POSITION IMPACT
The National Park Service (NPS) preserves unimpaired the natural and cultural resources and values of the National Park System for the enjoyment, education, and inspiration of this and future generations. Glaciers are a significant resource of many mountain ranges of the world including the three large parks in the NCCN. Combined, the glacial resources of this network are extensive, covering 235 km2. They are integral components of the region’s hydrologic, ecologic, and geologic systems, and they are retreating rapidly. This long-term monitoring program is one of only a few that collects in-situ mass balance measurements in the US.

Recent staffing shortages has resulted in backlog in the programs data management, resulting in delays in publishing current data. This position will support those data management objectives. In addition, the intern will process aerial imagery from recent geodetic (topography and elevation) glacier surveys. Advances in remote sensing tools, like Structure from Motion, has opened the door to spatially comprehensive glacier monitoring that in conjunction with traditional field approach can provide a better understanding of glacier change and its impacts to park ecosystems. Repeat geodetic data of high-watershed areas are immensely useful for applications of glacier monitoring, climate change studies, hydrology, and resource/infrastructure management downstream.


DELIVERABLES

At the completion of the internship, the intern will have completed entry, processing, and quality review of mass balance data, leading to publication of the data series and supporting publication of technical reports. Intern will have processed imagery using photogrammetric software delivering new DEMs of regional glaciers. As time permits, intern will update existing glacier mass balance calculations using new DEMs.

DESIRED INTERN QUALIFICATIONS

  • Desired skills include background in glaciology, GIS, remote sensing, photogrammetry software (SfM/ Metashape), and geology.
  • The applicant must be a U.S. citizen or U.S. permanent legal resident (“green-card-holder”). Prior to starting this position, a government security background clearance will be required.

WORK SETTING
North Cascades National Park Complex is located in Washington State along the Canadian border, approximately 100 miles northeast of Seattle, in Whatcom, Skagit, and Chelan counties in the 2nd and 4th congressional districts. North Cascades National Park Complex is comprised of North Cascades National Park, Ross Lake National Recreation Area (Ross Lake NRA), and Lake Chelan National Recreation Area (Lake Chelan NRA), a complementary suite of protected lands, united by a contiguous wilderness overlay. Combining these three distinct units under a single unique administration recognizes their shared purpose of preserving the core of the greater North Cascades ecosystem and wilderness while advancing their individual purposes.

The Complex encompasses a vast “sea of peaks” replete with over 300 glaciers, sawtoothed granite pinnacles, myriad creek and riverine systems, and vast expanses of wilderness. Its rugged topography is home to a multitude of plant, animal, and fish species. Rare lichens, ancient cedars, Chinook salmon, bald eagles, marmots, mountain goats, the elusive fisher, and some 1,600 identified species share this diverse and expansive landscape. Human evidence spans nearly 10,000 years of habitation, use, and technological development.

The majority of work will occur in an office setting at park facilities in Sedro-Woolley, Washington. Sedro-Woolley is in an urban setting, located along the Interstate-5 corridor. Depending on intern, there will be opportunities for data collection in the field.

VEHICLE AND DRIVERS LICENSE REQUIREMENTS

  • Yes, applicant will need a valid driver's license in order to drive a government vehicle.
  • A personal vehicle is REQUIRED for this position.

HOUSING
No. Park housing is NOT available. The intern will be responsible for finding housing in the nearby area.
Rental housing is available in nearby urban areas of Sedro-Woolley, Mount Vernon and Bellingham, Washington. There are several colleges and universities in the area. Generally, lower cost rental housing is also available in more rural areas that are within commuting distance. NPS housing in Marblemount may also be available.

KEYWORDS
Glaciers, Mass balance, monitoring, Remote Sensing, Structure from Motion, climate change