The need for geoscience expertise in America's public lands is great. In many cases, geoscience is not adequately addressed in education, resource management, geological hazards mitigation, and research on public lands. The Geological Society of America, through the GeoCorps program, strives to increase the number of geoscientists on-the-ground, contributing to the research and protection of geologic resources and developing education and outreach activities.
Spring/Summer positions are posted in early December and applications are due in early February. Fall/Winter positions are posted in early May and applications are due in early July. Deadlines are 12:00 p.m. (noon), Mountain Time on the date assigned. Sign up for GeoCorps E-News to get first notice when positions are posted.
GeoCorps Program Facts
- GeoCorps provides temporary geoscience assignments on National Forests & Bureau of Land Management (BLM) lands across the U.S.
- Geoscientists of all levels are eligible and encouraged to apply. This includes undergraduate students, graduate students, post-docs, professionals, faculty members, teachers, and retirees.
- Placements are available in a wide variety of geoscience-related fields.
- GeoCorps participants receive a minimum pay rate of US$10.10/hr. Some locations offer free, on-site housing, and some locations offer an additional housing allowance if free housing is not available.
- Spring/summer opportunities are announced every December, and applications are due in February. Fall/winter opportunities are announced every May, and applications are due in July.
- Participants are chosen through a competitive selection process.
- Finalists are interviewed by phone and selected by the supervisor who will manage the on-site assignment.
- Offers are made by the Forest Service and BLM in March for spring/summer and in August for fall/winter.
- A travel allowance is provided for a few GeoCorps assignments in extremely remote locations to help cover the costs of traveling to and from the work site. The project description will include information on a travel allowance if one is available.
- Although GeoCorps has no official program to assist with student loans, participants may qualify, in certain circumstances, for some level of loan deferment or forbearance during the months spent in GeoCorps. Please see the Federal Student Aid website for eligibility details.
GeoCorps Program Goals
- Increase the number of geoscientists conducting education, research, and resource management projects on America's public lands;
- Enhance resource managers' and policy makers' geoscience knowledge so that better decisions can be made regarding the management of natural resources and mitigation of geological hazards;
- Provide hands-on geoscience experience and internships for students who are working toward careers in industry, academia, or land management;
- Offer seasoned geoscientists the opportunity to share their knowledge with land managers and assist with on-site projects.
- Raise the public's knowledge and awareness of the value of geoscience resources on public lands;
- Instill a public land ethic in current and future generations of geoscientists by having the opportunity to learn and understand federal land management;
- Enhance the diversity of geoscientists working on America's public lands.
Guest Scientist Program
The GeoCorps Guest Scientist Program has evolved as a branch of GeoCorps America. Traditionally, most GeoCorps participants have been relatively new geoscientists or geoscientists-in-training for whom it is beneficial to spend the summer at a National Park, National Forest, or BLM Unit to gain on-the-ground experience in geology and geology-related fields. Their knowledge and skills enable them to assist public lands with their important geoscience projects.
However, many public lands have need for a higher level of expertise or for a longer-term project than the typical three-month GeoCorps assignment can offer. Through the Guest Scientist Program, public land managers are able to submit geoscience and geoscience-related projects that require up to one year’s time and/or expertise within a specific geoscience field. GeoCorps participants involved in these higher-needs projects are classified as Guest Scientists. Qualified candidates who meet the eligibility requirements can apply to be a Guest Scientist. Previous GeoCorps participants are not eligible to apply for another similar position, but they are eligible to apply to be Guest Scientists.