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Hiring Program Coordinator

By June 1, 2016No Comments

POSITION FILLED – Austin Youth River Watch is seeking a full-time Program Coordinator to begin immediately.
Program Coordinator  
FLSA Status: Salaried, Exempt
Salary range: $30,000-$34,000 annually, commensurate with experience
Earliest start date: Immediately
The Austin Youth River Watch office is located in the Hornsby Bend area of Austin, zip code 78725. Duties will include driving to various schools and testing sites all across Austin.
About Austin Youth River Watch
Austin Youth River Watch (AYRW or “River Watch”) is an after-school and summer program for high school students. We transform the lives of primarily underserved teenagers through youth development activities built around environmental education focusing on Austin rivers, community engagement, and adventure. Our students, “the River Watchers,” are performing real-world science by learning how to monitor water quality, and by participating in hands-on projects to improve water quality and increase water quantity in the Austin area. In addition, we facilitate opportunities for our students to build leadership and engage with the broader community through our program.
We are hiring a full-time Program Coordinator to work, often independently, with the underserved youth in our program. Our new team member will be deeply passionate about supporting youth in our community in being empowered and engaged, and in learning how to be environmental stewards.
Responsibilities and Duties 
Coordinate program logistics:

  • Transport students from school, to water quality monitoring sites, to the River Watch EcoHouse, and then to their homes during our after-school program, Monday through Thursday, and for additional weekend activities as needed.
  • Procure and maintain monitoring equipment and program supplies in conjunction with other coordinators, including water quality testing reagents, food and drink for youth, camping supplies, office supplies, and other necessary materials.
  • Ensure your assigned River Watch 12-passanger van is routinely maintained by accredited mechanics, and has enough fuel for daily programming.

Provide environmental education programming:

  • Work with other program staff to implement River Watch academic year and summer programming including, but not limited to, daily water quality monitoring and overnight weekend educational field trips.
  • Attain and maintain status as a Certified Water Quality Monitor – training provided.
  • Master the AYRW Mentor Test content in order to teach this to students. Look for opportune teachable moments on a daily basis to deliver this content, and assist in the development of instructional materials and activities to aid various styles of learners.
  • Learn and reinforce concepts relating to ecological and hydrological enhancement associated with the River Watch service projects. Coordinate efforts to support and collaborate with the Service Project Manager as needed throughout the year, and also during service project days for your students. There may be weekend projects associated with these efforts.

Provide youth development programming:

  • Facilitate peer mentoring throughout the program. You will be expected to be with youth multiple hours a day Monday through Thursday, and for additional weekend activities as needed.
  • Participate in youth leadership and community engagement activities and events, and coordinate River Watchers’ participation in these activities throughout the year. Assist in the planning of these events and activities as needed.
  • Help students set and evaluate personal, academic, and River Watch goals. Collaborate with the Student Readiness Committee and assist program staff in facilitating career exploration, financial literacy, and other life skills activities. Be willing to connect students with resources, and to help brainstorm/edit college admission essays, resumes, and scholarship documents, including writing letters of recommendation.

Participate in program administrative and development activities:

  • Recruit River Watchers in conjunction with AYRW Staff and Board. Establish and endeavor to maintain 10 students at each of the assigned schools, including a working wait-list for interested students. Assist in building good relationships with AISD teachers and staff.
  • Select, train, and mentor River Watchers, interns, and volunteers. Assure safety and supervision of all participants.
  • Take attendance. Administer and collect all necessary permission and other forms, and program evaluation surveys. Submit documentation, data sheets, receipts, and other records to the Executive Director as required.
  • Develop and maintain good relationships with AYRW Staff and Board, parents, teachers, and other stakeholders. Actively promote a positive program environment.
  • Help design, distribute, and collect outreach materials and program documentation as appropriate. Assist with or lead program outreach efforts as needed.
  • Work with other staff to regularly clean and maintain the River Watch EcoHouse.
  • Help with mail, social media, and other program communications, as needed.
  • Work with other staff regularly to coordinate academic year and summer program design, discuss evaluation processes and outreach efforts, and address other issues as needed.
  • Perform other duties as assigned by the Board and Executive Director.


  • Bachelor’s degree in ecology, environmental education, science education, geography, environmental science, biology, chemistry, or related fields.
  • Three years working with secondary school students.
  • Demonstrated competency and experience in outdoor education and environmental science activities. Our program includes overnight and multi-day camping and canoe trips.
  • Strong organization and communication skills (active listening, speaking, and writing).
  • Technology skills: MS Office (Word, Excel, and PowerPoint); Google Drive, Dropbox, and other cloud-based applications; and social media (Facebook, Twitter, etc).
  • Passing a comprehensive criminal background check.
  • CPR/1st Aid certification (adult, child, and infant) – can be attained once employed
  • Basic water rescue certification or equivalent – can be attained once employed


  • Experience with youth counseling or youth development activities strongly preferred.
  • Bilingual in English/Spanish preferred. Multi-lingual appreciated.
  • Experience with WordPress or other web design platforms, graphic design, and the creation and editing of video and multimedia appreciated.
  • Competency and experience with building and outdoor maintenance tasks appreciated.

The ideal person will:

  • Have a passion for working with youth to create and achieve personal and educational goals;
  • Be a self-starter who is able to anticipate and address needs in dynamic contexts;
  • Represent Austin Youth River Watch in a responsible and professional manner by modeling our mission and core values to all stakeholders;
  • Demonstrate sensitivity and responsiveness to cultural differences;
  • Demonstrate a willingness to grow and learn in youth development and environmental education fields by attending trainings, conferences, and other opportunities;
  • Maintain appropriate professional boundaries with youth, parents, staff, board members, program partners, volunteers, and community members; and
  • Demonstrate the ability to work with a diverse staff, volunteer, and student team, and possess strong conflict management skills.

Working Conditions
This job requires significant time driving a 12-passenger van during afterschool and summer programming. The Program Coordinator must be able to lift heavy objects (up to 50 pounds), and may be subject to standing, walking, sitting, bending, reaching, stooping, kneeling, crouching, or crawling frequently or for long periods of time. Work is performed primarily outdoors, with exposure to inclement weather and varying temperatures. This employee will occasionally need to participate in experiences that can be very physically demanding, such as: caving (pulling yourself through on your knees, toes and forearms), and canoeing.
The Program Coordinator will be exposed to hazardous chemicals, though safety equipment will also be made available. This employee must be able to perform job duties with minimal supervision, and may be required to handle tools that require strict accordance with safety protocols.
The approximate daily schedule is during the school year is 1:00 to 9:00 PM, Monday through Thursday, and 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM on Fridays; and 7:30 AM to 3:30 PM during the summer program. Meetings and other commitments are scheduled at other times, as needed. Employees may work 120 – 130 hours during the week of Spring Break. The person in this position can expect to work multiple overnight campouts and sleepovers each semester.
Application Info Austin Youth River Watch as an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer, complies with all applicable federal and state laws regarding nondiscrimination and affirmative action. AYRW is committed to a policy of equal opportunity for all persons and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, age, marital status, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, disability, religion, or veteran status in employment, educational programs, or other activities. If you need assistance or an accommodation during the application process because of a disability, it is available upon request. AYRW is pleased to provide such assistance, and no applicant will be penalized as a result of such a request.
Interested and qualified applicants should submit a resume, a cover letter with your statement of interest, and a list of at least three references to Candidates who progress in the application process will be invited for interviews in Austin, Texas, August 8-18, 2016.
Print the Program Coordinator job description here.

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