Southwest Conservation Corps

Get paid to work outside and explore amazing places!

We are Southwest Conservation Corps! Southwest Conservation Corps (SCC) operates conservation service programs across Southern Colorado and Northern New Mexico that empower individuals to positively impact their lives, their communities and the environment. SCC has offices in Durango and Salida in Colorado and Acoma and Gallup in New Mexico.

From 14,000 foot, snow covered mountains, to deep canyons carved by rivers millions of years ago, you will experience the unique and beautiful Southwest from many perspectives with SCC. Travel places few people have been, places covered in history, beauty and true wild ares.

More about Southwest Conservation Corps

Jobs in the Spotlight

Projects may include, trail construction & maintenance, fencing, habitat improvement, hazardous fuels reduction and re-vegetation. Each crew consists of 6 members and 2 leaders. Crews work and camp for 9 days at a time in frontcountry and backcountry locations in all types of weather conditions. Schedule may vary depending on location and program. SCC crews work in a variety of national parks, national forests and other areas throughout the Southwest.

Programs start in March, June, and September and range from 10-30 weeks. Corps Members are eligible for an AmeriCorps Education Award in addition to their weekly stipend.

Southwest Conservation Corps is a learning experience. We are looking for motivated individuals who can commit to completing the program and who have the desire to learn new skills. No previous work experience is required. However, individuals with experience may choose to apply for our Crew Leader Development Program (CLDP) or as a Crew Leader.

The Employee Experience

Have you ever wanted to work outside? What about work outside, gain technical skills in trail and chainsaw work, meet some awesome people, and spend your summer exploring a beautiful part of the country? If you said yes, SCC is for you! Become immersed in an intense and wonderful community. The hands on work is just a part of our program, as we focus on community living, group dynamics and communications, education and personal development in addition to the technical skills you will gain. Whether you want to go on to work for federal agencies, non-profits, or even the corporate world, SCC will provide an experience that you can take with you wherever you end up!

Ideal Candidate

If you are 18-25 and looking to gain hands on experience in the conservation field, The Southwest Conservation Corps is for you! Get ready to get dirty, work hard, and have an amazing experience living and working in a beautiful part of the country.  Follow the links below to learn more about our positions and openings!

Room and Board

Crews typically work for 9 days at a time in front country and back country locations, followed by 5 days off.  When on hitch, Southwest Conservation Corps covers the cost of food and camping and Corps members are responsible for finding own housing on 5 days off.  However, there are many free campgrounds around Durango, CO and Salida, CO that Corps members utilize on days off.

Employee Perks

  • Weekly living stipend 
  • Potential to earn an AmeriCorps award
  • Food provided while on Hitch
  • Conservation skills training,
  • Be part of a community, and opportunity to work outside in some of the best places in the Southwest

Getting Here and Getting Around

Durango: Durango has a small airport just outside of town. The closest large airport is Albuquerque. However, getting around town without a car is harder. Carpooling is more versatile than Public transportation is. So while we do not require cars, having one would allow you to get around more easily. 

Salida: Denver Airport is not far from Salida, but it is up to you to get from A-B. Again, cars not required, but will make your life more flexible. 

New Mexico Offices: Albuquerque  is central to many of our Ancestral Lands offices, and the largest airport in the area. Getting to each of our offices requires a car from Albuquerque.  

For Fun

The Southwest Conservation Corps has offices in some of the most beautiful parts of the country. From each of our bases, you have access to everything from World Class mountain biking, skiing, climbing, fishing, rafting, backpacking and some of the best scenery around! 

Our Jobs



*Positions available in both Durango and Salida, CO!

See below for more info, and follow the links for complete position descriptions and applications!

2017 Adult Camping Crew Corpsmember

Work outside in Colorado while gaining hands on conservation experience. Spend your days performing trail construction and maintenance or working on sustainable forestry projects, while living out of your tent! Our terms start in Late May, with the option of 11 or 22 week programs in either Salida or Durango, CO. Get paid $275/week, and earn an AmeriCorps Education Stipend of $1,525 (minimum) at the end of your service. Follow the link below to see complete position descriptions and to apply!

2017 Crew Leader

Work leading an adult crew of 6 members ranging from 18-25 performing conservation work in the beautiful Southwest! The position is multi-faceted and demanding, but with opportunity for enormous rewards. Earn $10-13/hour DOE/DOQ. Program runs from late March to Late November, 2017.

2017 Crew Leader Development Program (CLDP)

Work outside in Colorado while growing and using your leadership skills to perform hands on conservation experience while leading 6 members. Program runs from Early April to late November 2017. Get paid $375/week, and earn an AmeriCorps Education Award of $2,887 at the end of your service.

2017 Field Supervisor - Four Corners Office

Durango, CO

The Field Supervisor’s primary role is to provide field support to our field staff and seasonal conservation crews, saw crews and Veterans crews by offering technical assistance, morale support, and ensuring program integrity through policy enforcement and positive mentoring. The Field Supervisor will also assist with Corpsmember interviewing and selection, program logistics, and planning and facilitating staff trainings. Field Supervisors will support both adult, veteran and youth crews. Field time during training season is 100%. Field time during program season will range around 70% field and 30% office/administration.

2017 High School Crew Leader

Work leading a youth crew of 8 members ranging from 14-17 in the summer, and an Adult crew in the fall, performing conservation work in the beautiful Southwest! The position is demanding, but hugely rewarding. Earn $10-13/hour DOE/DOQ. Program runs from late March to Late November, 2017.

2017 Veteran Fire Corps Crew Leader

Lead post-9/11 military veterans, ages 20-35, completing conservation work projects on public lands through the Southwest. The program assists veterans in their transition to civilian careers by providing certifications and training that prepares them for careers in Wildland Fire Fighting.

2017 Veteran Fire Corps Member

The Southwest Conservation Corps' Veterans Fire Corps program provides training and on-the-job experience for post 9-11 era veterans interested in entering into careers and gaining experience in natural resource management. Works throughout the Southwest including, but not limited to, Colorado, Arizona, Utah, and New Mexico. Salary: $375/week and $2199.92 AmeriCorps Education Award upon successful completion of program. The program aims to provide background knowledge and introductory training in Wildland firefighting. The program assists veterans in their transition to civilian careers by providing contact with potential future employers and trainings in applying for federal land management jobs. The program engages participants in a cohort environment in which a team of recent era veterans works together to train and complete natural resource management projects, specifically related to fire fuels management and fuels reduction. Projects require members to camp and live on project locations for up 8 days at a time, followed by 6 days off. SCC has also taken on a role as a part of the larger AmeriCorps Disaster Response Team, and as such, some crews may get deployed on Disaster response projects for up to 30 days. Trainings will focus on gaining conservation and forestry skills, specifically the use of hand tools and the operation of chainsaws. Members will go to Colorado Fire Camp and earn S130- Firefighter Training, S190- Intro to Wildland Fire Behavior, S212- Wildland Fire Chainsaws, IS100b- Intro to Incident Command System, and IS700a-National Incident Management System, as well as Wilderness First aid and CPR (WFA) certificates.

Media Technician

Individual Placement

Part Time- $260 per week. Jan 23- June 23 This intern position is to assist the Royal Forge Field Office recreation program in its goal of improving and maintaining consistent signage to increase visibility of BLM public lands. The intern would create a sign plan focusing on the Gold Belt Travel Management Area. Duties include interpretive sign panel design and development of a plan for locating portal signs and directional signs for BLM recreation areas. Coordination with BLM staff, local groups and county officials would be required in order to finalize sign locations. Familiarity with public process and experience in diplomatic communication, both written and oral is highly sought after for this position. Excellent skills in graphic design and interpretive writing skills are required, and working knowledge of ArcGIS is highly desirable.

Resource Assistant Program-San Juan National Forest

Individual Placement

Term Dates: March 6, 2017 – March 2, 2018 Orientation Date: March 3rd Living Stipend: $510 per week AmeriCorps Education Award: $5,730 Other Benefits: Upon completion of the program, Resource Assistants will be eligible for non-competitive hiring with the Federal government for a two year period for starting entry-level positions. Requirements: Ages 21-35 Clean Driving Record Recent Graduate within 1-2 years Holds or seeking degree in Natural Resources related subjects Ability to hike in mountainous terrain, work outside and occasionally work alone in the forest Willingness to inspect outfitter-guide permits, which may include hiking, mountain biking, riding horses and ATV’s Want to get experience working within a federal agency? Work with recreation special use permit managers and learn about the Forest Service partnership with recreation providers, such as campground concessions, outfitter and guides, and mountain bike companies that bring quality recreation experiences to the public. Be mentored in on-the-ground inspections, including recreation residences and campgrounds, and monitoring recreation activities, such as outfitters and guides and competitive races. You will learn to balance resource protections with permitted uses. Work with non-recreation special use permit managers to assist with field inspections, permit renewals and permit issuances for uses ranging from dams and roads to power-lines, communication sites and military uses. And most importantly, represent the US Forest Service in contact with public. Recreation Special Uses Program: The Resource Assistant will work half-time with a recreation special use permit administrator to evaluate permit applications, conduct on-the-ground monitoring for permit compliance with campground concessions, outfitters and guides, competitive events and summer cabin special use permits. Create permits and bills in the special uses database. Draft written correspondence and meet with permit holders and gain an understanding of what it means to offer recreation opportunities to the general public. Non-Recreation Special Uses Program: The Resource Assistant will work the other half-time with a non-recreation special use permit manager and assist with conducting inspections of existing permitted uses on National Forest System lands to determine if the use is in compliance with the terms and conditions of approval. Identify and report on any inconsistencies between permitted use and actual use. Assist in the reissuance of expired non-recreation permits, participate in discussions with permit holders, assist with conducting environmental analyses, determine permit fees, and develop permits in the special uses database. Other Involvement: - Map special use permits in GIS. - Collect and record data in databases. - Learn about policies, laws and regulations that apply to National Forest land management. - Gain exposure to other resource areas, including recreation and trails, wildlife biology, hydrology, archaeology, and other areas. - Have your input heard by developing an end of season report with recommendations for program improvements. This position offers an immense amount of diverse responsibly and experience within the agency as well as experience with a conservation corps. The candidate will also be afforded an accelerated track to employment with the US Government through the 2-Year Non Competitive status. Only career oriented candidates will be considered. Job Location Colorado Springs, Colorado, United States

How to Apply

Check out our website to learn more and apply! We accept applications for programs starting in January for our summer programming, and May for our Fall programs.  Please look on our website for specific details on each of our crews and how to apply. Questions about our programs can be directed to the following at each office:

Four Corners Office (Durango):
Teresa DiTore (Adult and High School Crews) 
Ryan Brink (Adult and Veteran Fire Corps Crews)

Los Valles Office (Salida):
Anna Hendricks

Internship Programs (All SCC Offices)
Lauren van Vliet

Ancestral Lands, Navajo Nation:

Ancestral Lands, Acoma Pueblo:
Aaron Lowden

Ancestral Lands, Zuni Office:
Ryan Aguilar