Positions

Horticultural Technician

The Highlands Biological Station is hiring a Horticultural Technician. The Horticultural Technician will be responsible for the maintenance of the gardens and grounds of the 23-acre Highlands Biological Station, to include the historical Highlands Botanical Garden, demonstration gardens, lawns and planting beds around buildings, natural areas, and other areas currently defined or that may be defined on the property. The Horticultural Technician is also responsible for monitoring and upkeep of walkways, trails, boardwalks, and driveways on the HBS campus, being alert to safety hazards (downed limbs, ice and snow, etc.). As assets for public enjoyment and education, the diverse native plant collections of the HBS gardens and grounds are to be maintained sustainably, in a first-rate condition, commensurate with the reputation of the Highlands Biological Station and Foundation. The Horticultural Technician develops protocols for ongoing maintenance and care of gardens, grounds, and tools and other equipment as needed. The Horticultural Technician will report to the Director of the Biological Station or the Director’s assigns, and in certain situations will work with the HBS Facilities Manager and other staff members as projects or needs dictate. The Horticultural Technician supervises two summer Botanical Garden Interns annually, and is expected to work cooperatively with the HBS Botanical Garden Committee and other volunteers.

The Horticultural Technician will report to the Director of the Biological Station and will work in conjunction with the Administrative Director of the Biological Foundation and in certain situations will work with the Maintenance Manager and other managers of the facility.

Knowledge, Skills and Abilities/Competencies: This position requires a minimum of three to five years of horticultural or related experience. Must have excellent leadership, communication (both verbal and written in English), interpersonal, organizational, project management, and horticultural or landscape maintenance technical skills. Must be capable of working under pressure and independently as necessary, as well as handling a diverse range of responsibilities. Must work as a team member of the department, maintaining positive working relationships with colleagues, interns, volunteers, as well as an excellent rapport with diverse HBS users and visitors (students, faculty, researchers) and the general public. Must be able to operate all tools, vehicles, and equipment required for use by the needs of the position. A valid driver’s license is required. A degree in horticulture or botany is preferred, and knowledge and expertise with native plants is a plus.

Salary and Benefits:  $23,332 – $49,547 ~ Anticipated hiring range $25,000 – $27,000

To Apply: Please visit WCU’s web recruitment system at jobs.wcu.edu to apply. Go to “search positions” and select “Highlands Biological Station” under the “department” drop down menu. Follow the instructions to submit your application materials. You will need to create an account and login in order to complete the online application form.

 

Summer Internships

Internship Positions (see below for descriptions):

  • Botanical Garden Assistant
  • Assistant Naturalist at the Highlands Nature Center

Deadline to apply: March 13, 2015

 

Botanical Garden Assistant

Wage:   $300 per week ($7.50 /hr), free group housing, and possible college internship credit.

Hours:   Full-time, temporary (40 hours per week, no overtime or benefits available), position is from mid-May through mid-August, with specific dates to be determined.

Description:  Supervised by the HBS Botanical Garden horticulturist, the two Botanical Garden Assistants will assist in identification, labeling, and maintenance of more than 450 native plant species and will help to maintain the grounds and gardens, trails, boardwalks, and bridges throughout the 22-acre campus. This position will include working with the HBS Botanical Garden Committee, a volunteer group, and working with the public to interpret the natural history of local plants and identify native plant species within the garden. Interns will develop and lead weekly garden tours.  Interns will identify a project of special interest, work with the staff to accomplish the project, and give a presentation on his/her project at the end of the internship. Interns will spend 10 hours/week on the garden tours and their projects, and 30 hours/week on garden maintenance. This job may involve heavy lifting (no more than 50 lbs.) and will sometimes involve working without supervision and in rainy weather. Occasionally, the individual may be asked to assist other Station employees in the office, library, or Nature Center or with special events.

The successful applicant must be able to trim, cut, and pile brush; use a shovel, hoe, and other garden tools, as well as a wheel barrow, to do general gardening and trail repairs; help with lawn mowing and lawn maintenance on the campus; learn to identify wildflowers; collect and mount plant specimens; learn to make plant labels; and assist others as required.

Qualifications:    Applicants should be students (or recent graduates) with a major in biology, botany, horticulture, or some other environmental science.  The ideal candidate should have training and/or experience in field botany, landscaping, and working with the public.  Familiarity with southern Appalachian plant species and with horticultural practices is desirable.  Applicants must be U.S. citizens and have a valid driver’s license.  Non-smokers are preferred.

To apply:    A State of North Carolina job application (PD107) MUST be completed (available on website; there is no vacancy number – please write in the name of the position).  Send application, cover letter, resume, and a list of 3 references to Dr. Jim Costa, Highlands Biological Station, 265 N. Sixth Street, Highlands NC 28741.

Applications must be received by March 13, 2015.

For additional information about the Botanical Garden and Highlands Biological Station, please call 828-526-2602.

 

Assistant Naturalists at the Highlands Nature Center

Wage:   $300/week ($7.50/hr), free group housing, and possible college internship credit.

Hours:   Seasonal full-time (40 hours per week, no overtime available, Saturdays and some evenings required), position dates are May 12 – Aug 16, but some flexibility may be possible.

Description:    Two Assistant Naturalists help with daily operations of the Highlands Nature Center.  Primary duties include working with the public to interpret the natural history of the southern Appalachians and related Nature Center exhibits, answering questions about local natural areas and recreational opportunities, actively developing and presenting several environmentally-based educational programs for diverse audiences, and serving as co-counselor for a series of Nature Day Camps for children ages 4 to 14.  Staff will also assist with the implementation of weekly special evening programs for the public.  Work also involves the feeding, cleaning, general care, and interpretation of live animal exhibits (mainly reptiles and amphibians).  Other general duties include word processing; maintaining program schedules; participant registration; handling money; and cleaning and maintaining exhibits, the Nature Center, and animal enclosures on a daily basis.  Summer staff may also be occasionally asked to assist other Station employees in the office, maintenance shop, or Botanical Garden.  These jobs may include heavy lifting (≤ 50 lbs).  Assistant Naturalists work a 40-hour week, but the schedule will require flexibility including weekend and some evening work.

 Qualifications:    Applicants should be students (or recent graduates) with a major in biology, zoology, botany, environmental science, science education, outdoor recreation, or other related fields.  Proficiency in dealing with the public is a must.  Ideal candidates should have experience working with children; familiarity with a variety of environmental education programs such as Project WILD; experience in a museum, visitor’s center, camp, or similar setting; and experience handling and caring for animals.  Knowledge of the flora and fauna of the southern Appalachians is very desirable.  Applicants must be U.S. citizens and have a valid driver’s license, and be in good physical condition to lead hikes.  Willingness to work a flexible schedule is a must.  Non-smokers are preferred.

To apply:    A State of North Carolina job application (PD107) MUST be completed (available on website; there is no vacancy number – please write in the name of the position).  Send application, cover letter, resume, and a list of 3 references to Dr. Jim Costa, Highlands Biological Station, 265 N. Sixth Street, Highlands NC 28741.

Applications must be received by March 13, 2015.

 

Links

internship application form (NC PD107)

continuation sheet