Ecological Design Internship

Hiring Organization: Natural Community Services
Employment type: Internship
Job Location: Southeast Michigan
Application Deadline: January 1, 2020

Ecological Design Internship Overview

The position will assist with ecological and green infrastructure site assessment, design and installation under NCS lead designer and principal ecologist.  NCS typically designs about 40 projects in a typical season, with additional field implementation – so the candidate must also be capable of physically installing their designs.  These projects also include client and staff communication responsibilities.

Job Duties & Responsibilities

Duties for the Design Intern shall include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Bioswale, natural shoreline, wildlife habitat & other native landscape design
  • Physical and biological assessment for habitat & other native landscape design
  • Geospatial survey using GPS/GIS, laser level and transit
  • Green infrastructure & ecosystem construction leadership
  • Site visits and assessments, surveying
  • Assistance with project quality control and photo-documentation
  • Community/participatory design strategies
  • Provide excellent customer service to volunteers and community partners.
  • Water budget research on GI and wetland project sites
  • Take soil borings and conduct analysis of soil at GI project sites.
  • Assist with participant survey administration, compiling and entering data
  • Provide additional support to other NCS programs as requested.
  • Other duties as assigned


Knowledge of plants native to southeast Michigan. Understanding of the hydrologic cycle. Ability to take soil borings and conduct a soil analysis using the Unified Soil Classification System (USCS) or the ability to learn to conduct soil analysis using this method. Familiarity with MS Office required; Google Apps a plus.

  • Undergraduate studies in landscape architecture or related design program, or one year of similar studies at the master’s level.
  • Confident, able user of Sketchup, AutoCAD, Google Earth Pro, Microsoft Office suite, Google Docs
  • Prior experience designing and/or installing rain gardens, or strong enthusiasm and capacity to learn quickly
  • Prior experience surveying sites with laser level, GPS etc. a plus

Physical Requirements

Office work will include extended periods of time sitting while using a desktop computer. Some physical lifting is required (up to 50 lbs.). Outdoor work may involve walking on slopes, debris-laden uneven ground, in wetlands and along lakes and rivers.

Other Requirements

Must be willing to work a flexible schedule including some evenings and weekends; required dates are noted in the box below. Must be a proactive team player with excellent communication skills, able to multi-task, prioritize and maintain attention to detail. This position requires excellent organizational and customer service skills. Must have reliable transportation.

Work Environment

This position is primarily an office position with occasional outdoor work. Outdoor work occurs in all seasons.

Application Instructions

All interested parties are invited to submit 1) a resume, 2) three references, and 3) a statement indicating why you are interested in this internship. E-mail to: For more information, please click here.


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