Tillamook Estuaries Partnership

A National Estuary Project

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Posted on Nov. 20th, 2019

VetsWork Career Development Training Program for Veterans Partners with Tillamook Estuaries Partnership

The Mt. Adams Institute and Tillamook Estuaries Partnership are excited to bring back the national career training program for military veterans, VetsWork Environment. The VetsWork program provides an opportunity for local Veterans to transition to a career in natural resources and public lands management.

The Tillamook Estuaries Partnership, a local non-profit in Garibaldi, OR, is hosting this 45-week hands-on internship in which participants will learn new skills while supporting restoration, education and community engagement projects. Interns will also get to work with the National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), which provides funding for the internship.  The experience and training in the VetsWork program is designed to encourage participants to explore potential career options with their sponsoring agencies. 

“The VetsWork program is intended to support military veterans as they transition back into civilian life by providing them with this opportunity to explore a potential career in service to public lands and the natural resources that abound in the region,” states Brendan Norman, Executive Director of the Mt. Adams Institute. Since the inception of the program, over 95 veterans have been hired into positions with public lands agencies as a result of the program.

The benefits to both the members and the sponsoring agencies are clear. Members get direct on-the-job training, insider knowledge of the agency, and invaluable networking opportunities, as well as potential non-competitive hiring authorities upon completion on the program.

“I really feel like this is right for me; making such a small sacrifice to gain so much experience and work with so many amazing people--and not to mention what we are giving back to the earth and the community,” said VetsWork member Chris Sutherland currently serving with Tillamook Estuaries Partnership.

The internship position is based out of Garibaldi, OR and begins on February 3rd, 2020. Interested applicants should contact Mt. Adams Institute’s recruitment coordinator at katie@mtadamsinstitute.org or review the position descriptions at mtadamsinstitute.org/internships.

Participants receive a modest living stipend, basic health insurance, an AmeriCorps education award of $6,195 and other benefits including potential housing assistance. As a result of the program’s success, the Department of Labor has designated VetsWork as an official apprenticeship program, which allows participants to access additional GI Bill benefits.

“The VetsWork program being an apprenticeship allowed me to use my GI Bill funds in conjunction with the AmeriCorps living stipend, creating a standard of living that I was comfortable with, thus allowing me to excel in my position,” said VetsWork alum Chris Carl. “This is a great opportunity for veterans to explore a field they are passionate about without having financial stress.”

About Mt. Adams Institute: Mt. Adams Institute is a nonprofit organization with a mission to strengthen the connection between people and the natural world through education, service learning, career development and research. More information about the organization can be found at: http://www.mtadamsinstitute.org

About AmeriCorps: AmeriCorps is a network of national service programs that each take a different approach to improving lives and fostering civic engagement. Members commit their time to address critical community needs like increasing academic achievement, mentoring youth, fighting poverty, sustaining national parks, preparing for disasters, and more. Learn more at: http://www.nationalservice.gov

About National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA): NOAA is a federal agency that focuses on the conditions of the oceans, major waterways, and the atmosphere. For more information visit: www.noaa.gov

About Tillamook Estuaries Partnership: Located on the north coast of Oregon, Tillamook Estuaries Partnership is dedicated to conserving and restoring Tillamook County's estuaries and watersheds. Their efforts target water quality, habitat loss, erosion and sedimentation, and flooding through restoration, monitoring, education and outreach. Find out more at: www.tbnep.org

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