We are currently hiring! Read the description below for the Environmental Educator and Environmental Justice advocate. 

Job Titles: Environmental Educator and Environmental Justice Advocate

Status: Non-Exempt/Contract

Reports To: Hampden Hampshire Conservation District Board of Supervisors, Cheryl Labrie (YMCA), and Rusty Polsgrove (Arise for Social Justice)

Pay Rate: $25-$30/hr

Application Deadline: 5:00 PM, March 8, 2024

Position Summary:

This is an in-person, 8-10 week position working with two organizational partners, the YMCA located in Holyoke, MA and Arise for Social Justice of Springfield, MA, for a combined total of up to 30 hours per week. Work with Arise will total 10 hours per week across 6 weeks during July and August, while work with the YMCA will total up to 20 hours per week across 8 weeks take place throughout July and August. Two weeks in June have been included for lesson planning and assembling materials for the YMCA portion of the position. 

Please clearly state in your application if you are applying for one or both of the positions.

In the role of Environmental Educator, the selected individual will provide environmental activity-based educational experiences with elementary age children. Working within the structure of the YMCA’’s summer enrichment programming, and with its staff, the person will prepare lessons and conduct activities with the children several days each week at both Holyoke and South Hadley locations, including attending off-site field trips of an environmental nature. Curriculum can be provided, or the individual may design their own lesson plans, or a combination of the two.

According to the expectations of the YMCA organization, the individual will:

  1. Create a safe, supportive, interactive and engaging environment for youth that is characterized by teamwork and inclusiveness. This includes demonstrating an appreciation of the youths’ efforts and accomplishments as well as providing assistance and encouragement to program participants when needed.
  2. Along with preparing and presenting lessons, the individual will also provide the supporting materials required for the lesson, set up the materials, and clean up the area used for the lessons afterward.
  3. Adapt teaching methods and instructional materials to meet students’ varying needs and interests.
  4. Plan and conduct activities for a balanced program of instruction, demonstration and work time that provides students with opportunities to observe, question, and investigate.
  5. Prepare students for further development by encouraging them to explore learning opportunities and to persevere with challenging tasks. 

In the role of Environmental Justice Advocate, the selected candidate will work with Arise for Social Justice, a community advocacy organization. The individual will work directly with the Springfield Climate Justice Coalition initiatives and mold committee’s public awareness campaign. Specific duties include:

  • Attending and contributing to meetings and taking notes as needed. Meetings may include biweekly staff meetings, Springfield Climate Justice meetings and those of the mold committee. Meetings may be held in-person or virtually
  • Participation in door knocking, tabling, and speaking events on behalf of the mold committee.
  • Creation of educational resources on mold and natural gas.
  • Assisting with organizing and attending rallies/standouts for community action 
  • Networking and inter-organizational relationship building
  • Creation of a 1-2 minute Public Service Announcement video explaining the dangers of mold in residential buildings, and tenant recourse options. (All materials and significant assistance for completion of this project will be provided by Arise).


Preferred completion of or current pursuit of BA/BS or Masters in environmental science, science education, or education. Current teachers are encouraged to apply.

Experience working with elementary age children in a classroom, enrichment, recreation, or project-based context, including creating and implementing lesson plans.

Demonstrated strengths (your three references should be able to speak to these strengths):

  • collaborative skills, such as timely and respectful verbal and written communications, open-mindedness, situational flexibility, creative problem solving
  • Self-motivated and highly organized 
  • Organized and completes detailed tasks well and on time
  • Ability to work well with individuals of all ages and abilities

Ideal Competencies

  • People Oriented: Seeks first to understand the other person’s point of view, and remains calm in challenging situations. Builds rapport and relates well to others. 
  • Results Oriented: Strives to deliver a high-value experience for children. Embraces new approaches, makes sound judgments, and transfers learning from one situation to another. 
  • Personal Development Oriented: Accurately assesses personal feelings, strengths and limitations and how they impact relationships. Pursues self-development that enhances job performance. Demonstrates an openness to change, and seeks opportunities in the change process.

Physical Requirements

Sufficient strength, agility and mobility to perform job requirements with active children and supervise program activities in both indoor and outdoor settings.

Other Requirements

Reliable transportation is required. A personal vehicle is ideal as the work takes place at two or more locations, and being on time is essential.

Ownership of a working tablet or computer equipped with internet connectivity. If you do not own one, the district may be able to provide one for the purposes and duration of this position only. 

Shared Supervision and Support

A Hampden Hampshire Conservation District staff or board member will provide check-ins 1-2 times per week to facilitate communication between the  individual and partners, and smooth functioning of the person in the position. Cheryl Labrie will co-supervise the YMCA-based aspect of the work, while Rusty Polsgrove will co-supervise and support the Arise Social Justice portion of the position. 

Please submit your resume, cover letter and contact information for three professional references via email to: [email protected] .

Application Deadline: 5:00 PM, March 8, 2024

We aim to fill the position by April 1, 2024.