Naturalist #T00569

Western Carolina University
March 06, 2023
Offerd Salary:$13.00
Working address:N/A
Contract Type:Other
Working Time:Negotigation
Working type:N/A
Ref info:N/A
Posting Details

Posting Information

Posting Number temp hourly675P

Quick Link for Internal Postings https: // Classification Title Working Title Naturalist #T00569 Department Highlands Biological Station Salary Range $13.00/hr Posting Information

The Highlands Nature Center is recruiting a Naturalist to support our summer programming at the Highlands Nature Center. Tucked into a temperate rainforest at the southern edge of the Appalachians, the Highlands Nature Center is part of the Highlands Biological Station, a multi-campus center of Western Carolina University. During the summer it reaches more than 10,000 residents and visitors from across the country. In addition to natural history exhibits, staff offer free daily and weekly programs for the public, weeklong summer camps, and special events. Programs take place in the Highlands Nature Center and adjoining 11-acre Botanical Garden.

This position is essential to the success of the Highlands Nature Center. The Naturalist is responsible for managing daily operations and creating and running a wide variety of programming. They work under the Lead Education Specialist.

Compensation: $13/hr. and on-site housing. The Naturalist will share living quarters with other summer staff in our campus dorms. Opportunities to develop on-site curriculum and contribute to displays are available.

Hours: The Naturalist will work an average of 40 hours a week. Days may begin as early as 7 AM and end as late as 10:30 PM. Some evenings and Saturdays are required. Willingness to work a flexible schedule is a must. Position dates are May 16 – Aug 12 ; however, flexibility with dates is possible.


Primary responsibilities include:

  • Opening, staffing, and closing the Nature Center
  • Interpreting the natural history of the southern Appalachians and related exhibits for the general public
  • Developing and presenting environmental educational programs for diverse audiences (e.g. garden tours, creature features, library programs)
  • Assisting with special events and evening programs for the general public
  • Answering questions about local natural areas and recreational opportunities
  • Feeding and handling live exhibit animals (primarily reptiles and amphibians)
  • Cleaning animal enclosures
  • Other duties include:

  • Handling transactions in the Gift Shop
  • Cleaning and maintaining the Nature Center
  • Driving state and passenger vehicles
  • Setting up and operating A/V systems
  • Supporting additional Nature Center programming as necessary
  • Knowledge, Skills, & Abilities Required for this Position

    Knowledge and Skills:

    Proficiency in dealing with the public is a must. Knowledge of the flora and fauna of the southern Appalachians is very desirable.

    Working Conditions and Physical Demands:

    The Naturalist will spend time outdoors in all weather and hike up to three miles on uneven terrain. They may be occasionally asked to assist in the office, maintenance shop, or Botanical Garden. These jobs may include heavy lifting (≤ 50 lbs).

    Minimum Qualifications

    Ideal candidates should have experience in at least one of the following areas: leading public programming; working at a museum, visitor's center, or similar setting; or handling and caring for animals.

    Other Qualifications:

    Applicants must be U.S. citizens and possess a valid driver's license. They must also successfully pass a background check.

    Preferred Qualifications

    Preferred Certifications:

    Infant and Adult First Aid and CPR certified. If not currently certified an opportunity to become certified will be provided.

    Preference will be given to candidates with a degree (or enrolled in a degree program) in biology, zoology, botany, environmental science, science education, outdoor recreation, or other related fields.

    Posting Text

    Open Date 01/10/2023

    Close Date 03/06/2023 Open Until Filled No Special Instructions to Applicants

    Applicants must apply online.


    Qualified applicants will be contacted by the department directly if selected for interview.

    Please Note: Temporary employees are paid bi-weekly on an hourly basis and do not receive benefits.


    Final candidates are subject to criminal & sex offender background checks. Some vacancies also require credit or motor vehicle checks.

    Western Carolina University uses E-Verify to confirm employment eligibility of all newly hired employees. To learn more about E-Verify, including your rights and responsibilities, please visit www. Proper documentation of identity and employability are required at the time of employment.

    Credential Verification

    All new employees are required to have listed credentials/degrees verified within 30 days of employment. All new employees who will be teaching are required to provide official transcripts within 30 days of employment. Transcripts should be provided for the highest earned degree and/or the degree which is being used to satisfy credential/qualification requirements.


    Western Carolina University is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, national origin, age, disability, genetic information, and veteran status, consistent with applicable federal, state and local laws, regulations, and policies, and the policies of The University of North Carolina. Additionally, the University promotes the realization of equal employment opportunity for minorities, women, persons with disabilities, and veterans through its affirmative action program.

    Persons with disabilities requiring accommodations in the application and interview process please call (828) 227-7218 or email at [email protected]

    University Safety

    The Western Carolina University Annual Safety Report is available online at University Annual Safety Report or in hard-copy by request at the office of the Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs, 227 HFR Administration Building, Cullowhee, NC 28723 (828-227-7147) or the Office of University Police, 111 Camp Annex, Cullowhee, NC 28723 (828-227-7301). The report, required of all universities participating in Title IV student financial aid programs, discusses crime statistics, procedures for reporting suspicious or criminal activity, security, police authority, crime prevention strategies, university policies on substance abuse and sexual offenses, workplace violence and fire safety.

    Applicant Documents

    Required Documents

  • Resume
  • Optional Documents

  • Cover Letter/Letter of Application
  • List of references
  • Supplemental Questions

    Required fields are indicated with an asterisk ().

  • Are you currently enrolled as a student at WCU?
  • Yes
  • No
  • Are you currently enrolled in 6 or more credit hours?
  • Yes
  • No
  • How did you hear about this employment opportunity?
  • Inside Higher Ed
  • HERC - Higher Education Recruitment Consortium
  • Website -
  • Personal Referral
  • Agency Referral
  • Other
  • From this employer

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