Mower SWCD to host GreenCorps member

Applications accepted through June 18 by MPCA for 42 positions across state working for 11 months starting Oct. 1

AUSTIN, Minn. — Friday, June 1, 2018 — Applications are open now for the environmentally focused Minnesota GreenCorps program for 42 positions statewide in 2018–2019, including one with Mower Soil & Water Conservation District.

Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) is accepting applications through June 18 as part of Minnesota GreenCorps, an AmeriCorps program coordinated by MPCA. The program places members with organizations around the state for 11-month positions running from Oct. 1 through late August 2019.

“We’re grateful to have been chosen as a GreenCorps host site as this will provide significant help for our already extensive outreach and community engagement efforts,” said Tim Ruzek, Mower SWCD’s water plan and outreach coordinator.

Minnesota GreenCorps, an AmeriCorps program, is a statewide initiative coordinated by MPCA to preserve and protect the state’s environment while training a new generation of environmental professionals. Funding is provided through a grant from ServeMinnesota and the Corporation for National and Community Service.

Members chosen for the program will serve full-time (40 hours per week) through late August 2019 in one of four focus areas: air pollution reduction; community readiness and outreach; green infrastructure improvements; and waste reduction, recycling and organics management. GreenCorps jobs will address critical environmental issues and build community resilience while developing skills and gaining professional experience.

Mower SWCD’s GreenCorps member will be a Community Readiness & Outreach position mainly working with Ruzek on a variety of projects, including the We Are Water MN statewide traveling exhibit coming to Austin in spring 2019.

We Are Water MN exhibit during its first round traveling around Minnesota

While assisting with communication materials and website/social media content, the member also will help Mower SWCD with communications and events associated with One Watershed, One Plan (1W1P) initiatives for the Cedar River (in progress) and Root River, which has a completed 1W1P plan. Mower SWCD’s soil-health initiative also will be one of the main projects involving the GreenCorps member in relation to outreach.

“We want to involve our GreenCorps member in education and outreach activities that engage people of all ages and backgrounds, enabling us to reach more people and raise more awareness about our local natural resources,” Ruzek said.

The program places AmeriCorps members with host organizations around the state to assist communities and local governments in addressing a variety of statewide needs that aim to:

  • Reduce solid waste and increase recycling in Minnesota communities.
  • Reduce greenhouse gases (GHG) and other air pollutants.
  • Reduce water runoff and improve water quality.
  • Assist community members to take eco-friendly actions.
  • Increase community resilience and build local capacity to respond to the threats of climate change.
  • Train new environmental professionals.

Since the program’s launch in 2009, more than 240 GreenCorps members have served more than 130 organizations across Minnesota. Former and current host organizations include cities, counties, public schools, watershed districts and nonprofits.

Applicants for Minnesota GreenCorps may indicate the focus area and region of the state where they would prefer to serve on their application. Their activities might include benchmarking and analyzing data; collaborating with community partners; delivering environmental training and education; mobilizing volunteers; and implementing best practices to improve water quality and air quality as well as prevent, reduce and divert waste.

GreenCorps members will receive a living stipend of up to $1,428 per month; are eligible for health insurance and loan forbearance; and earn an education award of $5,920 after the successful completion of the AmeriCorps term. The education award may be used for future education or to repay qualified student loans. During the service term, members receive training, develop job skills, gain professional experience and network with environmental professionals.

To apply and get more details, go online to www.pca.state.mn.us/mngreencorps.

Minnesota GreenCorps member applications are due by 5 p.m. (Central Time) on June 18, 2018. Qualified applicants might be contacted for an interview in June or July 2018. Potential applicants are encouraged to review the member eligibility requirements and qualifications listed in the Application Guidance document before submitting an application.

Questions related to Minnesota GreenCorps can be emailed to: mngreencorps.pca@state.mn.us.

Formed in 2007, CRWD works to reduce flooding and improve water quality on the Cedar River State Water Trail and its tributaries in southern Minnesota.

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