The inaugural MNN Green Job of the Week featured a high-level position, Grassroots Director for Greenpeace USA.  The position is great for the environmental advocate with a decade or more of experience under her belt.  This week’s position is geared towards someone on the opposite end of the spectrum – an individual looking to get his feet wet with one of the green jobs of today, and tomorrow.  Eagle Ridge Institute in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma is advertising a Green Building Specialist position on Treehugger.

Company:  Eagle Ridge Institute

Position:  Green Building Specialist

Location:  Oklahoma City, OK

Salary:  Living stipend and an end-of-service award

The green building specialist opportunity at the Eagle Ridge Institute is being funded by an AmeriCorps VISTA grant that was given to YouthBuild USA.  “The goal for this position will be to improve the incorporation of green building into the Eagle’s Nest YouthBuild program. This will include the following major focus areas: (1) Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) standards; (2) green products; (3) green office; and (4) fundraising.”  Source: Treehugger

The position is quite dynamic, as the person will be working directly with the staff at Eagle Ridge Institute in Oklahoma City.  However, the individual would be a member of the AmeriCorps VISTA program.  There are four activities described in the AmeriCorps VISTA Assignment Description (VAD) for this position:

  • Activity 1 – Assist in the implementation of LEED standards in all projects.
  • Activity 2 – The member will research various green building products.
  • Activity 3 – The member will work to make Eagle’s Nest YouthBuild a green office environment
  • Activity 4 – Members will assist with researching and writing funding proposals to grow the green building aspect of the program.
AmeriCorps VISTA is a service program that was originally founded in 1965.  In 1993, it became a part of AmeriCorps and the focus of the program is to fight poverty.  The position requires a one-year commitment and as part of the VISTA program, you will be eligible for the following benefits:
  • $4,725 Segal AmeriCorps Education Award or $1,200 post-service stipend
  • Modest living stipend
  • Healthcare benefits
  • Childcare assistance (if eligible)
  • Student loan forbearance or deferment
  • One year of noncompetitive status for a federal government job
  • Access to the VISTA and VISTA alumni network (170,000+)
The position may not pay a handsome salary, however it will provide an individual the opportunity to learn about green building practices, create a green office policy, and learn about the grant proposal writing process.  At the end of the one-year of service, the green building specialist will be prepared to contribute to a green economy with new skills, experience, and the benefits received from giving back to society.

Katrina Lynam-Henderson of Eagle Ridge Institute shared the following information via email about the green building specialist position, “First, we would like to incorporate greener practices in to all of our projects, whether it be make-ready or repairs for the Oklahoma City Housing Authority (the public assistance and section 8 housing organization in Oklahoma City) or specific rehabilitation projects from within our program itself.  Secondly, we would like to have at least one complete project (or home) every year to be LEED certified in all aspects possible.”  

Lynam-Henderson is not just the contact for the position; she is also a VISTA member herself.    “I originally signed up for VISTA when my health forced me to leave my last job.  Initially, I was hesitant - after all, I would be making so little money!  But I soon learned a valuable lesson - it's not the money you make, but the enjoyment you can get from what you do.  I have long loved helping people, and working in the non-profit field as a VISTA allowed me to fulfill this desire.  It's amazing to wake up every morning, not dreading going to work, but saying "What can I do today to make the world a better place? - then getting to actually put your ideas into action!”

Lynam-Henderson is nearing the end of her initial one-year service commitment but plans to continue with a goal of becoming a VISTA Leader.

For more information, read the following resources:

Apply for the position online:  YouthBuild Green Project Leader