Friday, July 31, 2015

Breakfast with the Bison

Breakfast with the Bison, August 29, 9:00 till noon at our Lorado Taft Field Campus near Oregon.  We will begin at Lorado Taft with talks from Dr. Holly Jones and Dr. Nick Barber about the Nachusa Grasslands – plant restoration and the animals that can be found in the grasslands.  After the talk there will be a tour of Nachusa Grasslands where we hope to see Bison.  There is probably about a 50% chance of seeing one.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Job Openings @ EPA in Chicago - Application Deadlines Friday 7/24


$53,041.00 to $68,950.00 / Per Year


Monday, July 20, 2015 to Friday, July 24, 2015
Job Title:Life Scientist/Physical Scientist (Env)/Chemist
2 vacancies 
These positions are located in the Water Division, Water Quality Branch, Standards Section in Chicago, IL.
At the entry level of this position, you will:

- Review and analyze technical and/or administrative issues in order to implement the water quality standards program under section 303(c) of the Clean Water Act.

- Review and implement environmental standards, guidelines, policies, and formal regulations. Review program guidance/regulations and provides comments in support of regulatory actions promulgated by the agency in a program or policy area.

- Provide advice, guidance, and consultation to state, local and/or tribal governments on matters relating to the development, execution, and monitoring of adequate environmental protection policies, plans, and programs.

- Prepare reports defining results of analyses, stating results and making recommendations as appropriate. Communicate effectively and works cooperatively with colleagues, agency management and other contacts outside the agency to gain information and corroboration on findings. Write study proposals, project plans, scientific and technical papers, publications, etc.

- Serve as a water quality standards coordinator for one or more states and/or tribes and as a scientific contact for the development of designated uses, water quality criteria and anti degradation policies consistent with Federal regulations. Provide technical support on implementation of standard.

- Analyze scientific, legal, environmental protection, and/or environmental management issues. Provide technical assistance regarding data review, quality assurance and sampling techniques to Regional staff, state and local agencies, private industry, and the general public. Prepares reports defining results of analyses, stating results and making recommendations as appropriate.

To qualify for the GS-09 level, you need to have at least one year of full-time experience defined as experience with water quality management programs under the Clean Water Act, such as monitoring and assessment, total maximum daily loads, water quality standards, National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permits, enforcement/compliance assistance, and/or non-point source management OR master's or equivalent graduate degree; OR 2 full years of progressively higher level graduate education leading to such a degree in the academic discipline



$76,919.00 to $100,000.00 / Per Year


Monday, July 20, 2015 to Friday, July 24, 2015

Job Title:Geologist/Physical Scientist (Environmental)
MANY vacancies
This position is located in Region 5, Superfund Division, Remedial Response Branch #2, Remedial Response Section #7 located in Chicago, IL.
You will:

- Advise Remedial Project Managers (RPMs) on proper scopes of work for planning and conducting site hydrogeological investigations. Review remedial investigation/feasibility study (RI/FS) work plans, RI/FS draft reports, and other technical documents for hydrogeological technical accuracy and content.

- Serve as a senior staff technical authority within the Superfund program to provide groundwater expertise for cleanup projects. Design, supervise and conduct or oversee groundwater investigations.

- Serve as a Remedial Project Manager (RPM) on sites regulated by the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act (CERCLA) and the Superfund Amendments and Reauthorization Act (SARA). Assess CERCLA hazardous waste sites for the purpose of identifying and measuring public health and welfare and environmental threats, identifying remedial alternatives, and recommending and implementing remedies.

- Participate in a variety of meetings conducted internally, with Agency contractors, with the public, and/or with other Federal and/or State agencies to discuss technical aspects of remediation. Conduct training sessions on hydrogeological investigations and clean-ups, for the Superfund Division and Regional staff.

- Oversee EPA contractors performing hydrogeological field work to ensure that the work conforms to EPA requirements.

To qualify for the GS-12 level, you need to have at least one year of full-time experience defined as conducting hydrogeological studies; using computer water modeling software; and working knowledge of geological and hydrogeological practices and techniques.


Team- NIU Move-In Day Volunteers Needed

Opening Day is Friday, August 21st and Team NIU Needs your help!

Each summer the NIU campus community gears up for Opening Day. During Opening Day, students, student organizations, alumni, faculty members, staff, and community volunteers demonstrate their Huskie Pride by welcoming NIU students to the residence halls. With over 3,000 students moving into the residence halls on Opening Day, Team NIU plays a critical role in making the day a success. The volunteers that comprise Team NIU offer their time and team spirit to give new Huskies and their families the best possible first impression of what makes NIU special. Team NIU volunteers will spend the day helping incoming students move into their new-home-away-from-home within the residences halls. This could include unloading vehicles, carrying student belongings upstairs, and pushing carts. Please keep in mind that some heavy lifting could be involved.

All individual volunteers and group/organization volunteers must register to be allowed at move-in locations on Opening Day. Only those volunteers wearing the official Team NIU t-shirt will be allowed to assist students with move-in. We will attempt to accommodate volunteer preferences in hall assignments; however, final hall placements will be determined by Housing & Dining based on the need for volunteers at each hall, and placement at a preferred hall cannot be guaranteed.
Organizations, please be prepared to provide the name, Z-ID, email address, and shirt size for each volunteer on your team at the time of registration. 
If you or your organization would like to be a part of Team NIU, or for more information, please go to the following updated link:

Thank you for your interest and we look forward to hearing from you!

Job Openings @ EPA in Chicago - Application Deadlines Monday 7/27


$43,362.00 to $68,950.00 / Per Year


Wednesday, July 22, 2015 to Monday, July 27, 2015
Job Title:Physical Scientist (Environmental)/Life Scientist/Environmental Engineer (RECENT GRADUATES)
MANY vacancies
This position is located in Region 5, Great Lakes National Program Office, Technical Assistance & Analysis Branch in Chicago, IL.
At the entry level of this position, you will:

- Provide technical assistance for the development and implementation of Great Lakes Legacy Act (GLLA) & Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI) sediment remediation and habitat restoration projects.

- Assist project management and project management responsibilities in conducting planning and implementing sediment remediation and habitat restoration projects under GLLA and GLRI.

- Serve as Great Lakes Area of Concern (AOC) Task Force Lead (TFL), including coordination with State AOC leads and local Public Advisory Councils to move AOCs towards delisting. Assists in coordinating with federal, state, local and tribal entities for AOC, GLLA, and habitat restoration work.

- Brief and coordinate with EPA staff and management in coordinating AOC planning.


Recent Graduates who have completed all course requirements for a qualifying associates, bachelors, masters, professional, doctorate, vocational or technical degree or certificate from a qualifying educational institution or technical education program within the preceding two years

2015 Green Fair on the Fox

Outdoor Education Intern – Fall Semester

Outdoor Education Intern – Fall Semester
Lorado Taft Field Campus
Northern Illinois University

Reporting to the Environmental Education Coordinator, this person is primarily responsible for the instruction of resident environmental education experiences for elementary and middle school groups at Lorado Taft Campus, Oregon, Illinois.  This person works closely with other staff to develop and deliver outdoor education programs.  This person assists other staff in the care and improvement of a project area.  This person will also be responsible for creating an educational display for a classroom bulletin board.
Training programs include, but are not limited to, Taft Campus policies and procedures, Taft Campus safety and risk management procedures, writing lesson plans, group management techniques, observing seasoned educators, and co-teaching.

1. Create and deliver lessons to elementary through high school students.
2. Research relevant information regarding Taft programs in order to have the necessary background knowledge to teach classes on topics such as ecology, cultural history, outdoor skills, and team building.
3. Participate in training activities and weekly staff meetings (Monday mornings and Friday afternoons).
4. Assist staff in overseeing project areas.
5. Research and create a relevant, educational display for a classroom bulletin board.
6. Opportunities for other projects exist as time allows.  These could include curriculum development, habitat restoration, development of teaching areas, etc.

High school diploma or equivalent.  Prior experience working with youth in a role such as a camp counselor, mentor, teacher, or coach.  Must possess the desire to work primarily outdoors, in all kinds of weather conditions.  Strong verbal communication skills and the ability to represent Taft Campus and NIU in a knowledgeable and professional manner are essential.  A high degree of initiative, mature judgment, and a strong work ethic required.  A pre-employment criminal background investigation is required.

Prior experience working in a similar environment (outdoor/environmental education facility, summer camp, nature center) preferred.

15-20 hours/week.  Weekly schedule varies based on the needs of the schools on site.  Some evenings required.

$8.50/hour.  A private, furnished room is provided.   Meals when the dining hall is in operation.

Starting in mid-August and continuing through the fall semester, with the possible option of continuing through the spring semester.

To apply, please send a resume and cover letter to Melanie Costello, Director/Outdoor Education Coordinator, via email ( or via regular mail (Lorado Taft Field Campus, PO Box 299, Oregon, IL 61061.

EPA Launches 2015 Campus RainWorks Challenge

EPA Launches 2015 Campus RainWorks Challenge

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is calling for entries in its fourth annual Campus RainWorks Challenge, a green infrastructure design competition for undergraduate and graduate students. Student teams, working with a faculty advisor, will submit design boards, a project narrative, and a letter of support for a green infrastructure project on their campuses. This year, student teams will be encouraged to incorporate climate resiliency into their stormwater management designs.

Registration opens September 1 and ends September 30. Teams must submit their entries by December 18, and winners will be announced on April 22, 2016. First-place teams will earn $2,000 to divide evenly among the team’s participants along with a faculty prize of $3,000 to support green infrastructure research or training.