Category Archives: Grants

In the News: Oregon’s Freres Lumber grows mass timber market

Mass timber is a term for a new class of ultra-strong construction materials produced by cross-grained layers of wood. Freres Lumber Company in Oregon is producing a type of mass timber engineered panel from sheets of wood veneer that is strong enough to be used for framing multi-story construction. Image: Screen capture from video posted by the North American Forests Partnership at www.forestproud.org: https://forestproud.org/2018/04/06/mass-timber-kyle-freres-freres-lumber-co/

The website North American Forest Partnership (NAFP)’s website shares stories from its members, a diverse coalition of forest industry professionals, organizations, and government agencies (including the USDA Forest Service) that focus on relevant, responsible, and innovative efforts for forest management, conservation and sustainable harvesting.

This month, the site features a video on the Freres Lumber Company, which is expanding the marketplace for a new wood product called mass timber, which they are doing with some help from a $250,000 “Wood Innovation” grant, awarded in 2017.

The USDA Forest Service’s Wood Innovation grants are awarded annually invest in research and economic development that expands the wood products and wood energy markets.

From the website:

For more than 90 years, the Freres family has been a steward of Oregon’s forests. With responsibility for more than 17,000 acres in the Pacific Northwest, the family-owned Freres Lumber Company has long been a pioneer in sustainable forest management and manufacturing.

Today, Kyle and his family continue that tradition, blending technology and sustainability to create the building materials of the future: Mass Timber. The same sustainable and renewable wood engineered to replace steel and concrete on a scale not previously possible. #forestproud.

View the video on the #forestproud website, or below:



Source information: Shared by the North American Forest Partnership: https://forestproud.org/2018/04/06/mass-timber-kyle-freres-freres-lumber-co/.

Updated April 6: Seasonal, youth employment opportunities on NW national forests

A young adult man and a young adult woman wearing gloves and hardhats roll a large cut log segment from a trail

PORTLAND, Ore. — April 6, 2018 —Are you looking to spend your summer outdoors, and get paid doing it? The USDA Forest Service and its youth employment partner, the Northwest Youth Corps, are currently accepting applications for a number of temporary, seasonal, internship, and Americorps youth employment grant-funded positions in the Pacific Northwest.

Youth Conservation Corps: Deschutes National Forest, Ochoco National Forest & Crooked River National Grasslands

Central Oregon Youth Conservation Corps is accepting applications through May 1 from youth ages 15 to 18 for nearly 100 summer jobs on the Deschutes National Forest, Ochoco National Forest, and Crooked River National Grasslands.

A young man wearing gloves, safety glasses, and a hard hat aligns wire fencing between two wooden posts.

A Youth Conservation Corps crew member hangs wire fencing on Willamette National Forest July 30, 2012. USDA Forest Service photo.

The competitive summer program pays $10.75 an hour. Participants work 36 hours a week to conduct hands-on projects in Central Oregon’s beautiful forests and high deserts, including trail building, maintaining fences, piling hazardous fuels, restoring campgrounds, and improving wildlife habitat on National Forest System lands in Central Oregon.

The program runs from June 25th through Aug. 16th. Participants work 9 hours a day Monday through Thursday.

Crews meet daily in Bend, Redmond, Sisters, Prineville, La Pine, Crescent, Madras, and Warm Springs.

“This program is a really good way to get a foot in the door with all kinds of jobs that I didn’t even know existed,” said Kevin Perez, who now works for Wildland Fire and is a two-time graduate of Heart of Oregon’s COYCC summer program.

Applications must be received by May 1st and are available online at www.heartoforegon.org.

For more information, contact Summer Program Coordinator Yancy Wilkenfeldt at (541) 633-7834 or Forest Service YCC Coordinator Paul Smith at (541) 416-6431.

Seasonal employment: Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest

The Forest Service is accepting applications for several spring and summer seasonal positons on the Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest April 3-9, 2018.

Positions are available in a variety of fields, including natural resources, timber, fire and dispatch support, recreation, and visitor services. Duty locations include ranger districts in Cle Elum, Naches, Winthop and Tonasket, WA and forest service offices in East Wenatchee, WA and Moses Lake, WA.

Five employees wearing Forest Service uniforms pose inside a

A group of Forest Service employees step into a seasonally-appropriate frame to celebrate “Bat Week” during a youth education event at the Oregon Park Zoo Oct. 28, 2017 in Portland, OR. USDA Forest Service photo.

Applications must be submitted on www.USAJOBS.gov. If you have questions or need more information about a specific position,  contact the ranger district or office where the position is hosted:

  • Cle Elum Ranger District
    (509) 852-1101
  • Methow Valley Ranger District
    (509) 996-4003
  • Tonasket Ranger District
    (509) 486-2186
  • Naches Ranger District
    (509) 653-1401
  • East Wenatchee Dispatch Office
    (509) 884-3473
  • Moses Lake Tanker Base
    (509) 664-9346

More information about temporary employment in the Forest Service’s Pacific Northwest Region can be found at www.fs.usda.gov/main/r6/jobs.

Youth Conservation Corps: Umatilla National Forest

The Heppner Ranger District is recruiting four students ages of 15-18 for summer employment in the Youth Conservation Corps (YCC).

A uniformed Forest Service employee stands in the foreground on a paved lot. He appears to be speaking to the group. Three youth crew members are visible behind him.

A Youth Conservation Corps crew, led by a Forest Service employee, prepare to conduct a clean up and maintenance at Gold Creek Pond on the Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest August 17, 2016. USDA Forest Service photo.

Work may include noxious weed removal, fence removal and construction, trail maintenance, meadow restoration, campground maintenance, slash piling, removal of tubing from tree seedlings, and fireline construction around logged units on the Heppner Ranger District.

Employment period is eight weeks, beginning June 18, 2018. Youth are paid the Oregon minimum wage of $10.25 per hour.  No previous experience is required.

Applications are available through the Forest Service office in Heppner, Ore. and at local high schools, and will be accepted through 2 p.m. on April 16, 2018. The positions will be filled via a random drawing later that day.

For more information, contact the Heppner Ranger District at (541) 676-9187. For more information about the Umatilla National Forest please visit www.fs.usda.gov/umatilla/.

Northwest Youth Corps: Youth Program (all Pacific NW Forests)

Applications are now being accepted for daily and overnight Northwest Youth Corps summer program opportunities on national forests across the Pacific Northwest.

These opportunities area open to students ages 15-18. Many opportunities include daily or weekly transportation to the job or camp site from a nearby town, a chance to earn career certifications and school credit, and an educational stipend after successful completion of a 6-week summer program.

For more information, visit: http://www.nwyouthcorps.org/m/.

Northwest Youth Corps: Young Adult Program (Mt. Hood National Forest)

Northwest Service Corps youth stewardship jobs training opportunities are open to young adults age 19-24. The program is currently accepting applications for a Mount Hood National Forest -based youth crew, May 7– Oct. 5, 2018.

Participants will help meet the Northwest’s highest priority conservation needs – including wildfire reduction, non-native weed eradication, trail building, maintenance, while earning professional certifications needed to become part of the next generation of stewardship leaders.

Crewmembers receive an AmeriCorps living allowance and an education award at the end of their assignment to continue their education or training.

For more information about program eligibility and application guidelines, visit: http://www.nwyouthcorps.org/m/ourprograms/nsc.

Northwest Youth Corps: Conservation Internships (region-wide)

The Northwest Service Corps is also seeking students ages 20-24 who are passionate about natural resources work for 3-10 month spring/summer internships in various conservation and science disciplines with federal agencies throughout the northwest.

Interns perform important field work in exchange for a living allowance and education award towards their continued studies.

Current opportunities include internships in North Bend, Ore. and surrounding counties for the Bureau of Land Management, and in the Willamette Valley for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

More information at : http://www.nwyouthcorps.org/m/ourprograms/ConservationInterns.

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The opportunities listed above are current as of April 2, April 6, 2018.

  • Find updated information or apply for Forest Service temporary and full-time career positions at  www.USAJOBS.gov.
  • Current information about Northwest Youth Corps opportunities at www.nwyouthcorps.org.
  • For more information about temporary and seasonal positions in the Pacific Northwest, including wildland firefighting and scholarship opportunities, visit https://www.fs.usda.gov/main/r6/jobs.
  • Students and young adults can find more information about opportunities available through the Pathways federal developmental hiring program, 21st Century Service Corps, Youth Conservation Corps, Job Corps and Resource Assistants programs at https://www.fs.fed.us/working-with-us/opportunities-for-young-people.
A male firefighter wearing a protective yellow Nomex shirt and red helmet is in focus in the foreground, while a similiarly attired female firefighter carrying a radio stands beyond him in the background. Both are surrounded by gear mounted to wildland firefighting trucks.

Firefighters patrol during the Milli Fire August 22, 2017 in Deschutes National Forest near Sisters, OR. USDA Forest Service photo by Andrew R. Mitchell.

FS awards citizen science funds to pika program

An American pika collects grass and flowers on a field of rocky talus

PORTLAND, Ore. — March 29, 2018 — Cascades Pika Watch is among the first programs awarded grants from the USDA Forest Service’s new CitSci Fund (Citizen Science Competitive Funding Program), the agency announced earlier this month.

The program is a partnership between Columbia River Gorge National Scenic area, Oregon Zoo, Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium, and several researchers to study the population pressures on the Gorge’s pika population. The U.S. Geological Survey is also partner in the research effort.

An American pika sits on a talus slope

An American pika sits on a talus slope, Aug. 12, 2014. U.S. Geological Survey photo by Will Thompson.

The American pika, or Ochotona princeps, looks like a cross between a mouse and a rabbit. Pika live on talus, or loose piles of rocks that collect on steep slopes; the pika found in the gorge are of special interest to scientists because they live at much lower elevations than other pika in the U.S.

In four years, Cascades Pika Watch has trained more than 1,000 volunteers to conduct pika surveys throughout the Cascade range. Many volunteers return to study the same sites every year.

“In the wake of the Eagle Creek Fire, it’s especially important that we collect data on our unique pika population,” Dr. David Shepherdson, Oregon Zoo deputy conservation manager, said.

The 2017 fire burned through the pika study area; citizen scientists will work with the Forest Service to document any changes to the pika population, habitat, and identify factors that played a role in any changes observed.

Data gathered before and after the fire will be especially valuable in helping researchers understand how large disturbances impact the pika, and related species.

“This… grant provides a wonderful opportunity for the public to be involved… (and) hopefully instill a natural resource interest and ethic to other members of their family and friends,” Brett Carre, Wildlife and Fisheries biologist for Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area, said.

An American pika peeks out from a rocky talus slope

An American pika peeks out from a rocky talus slope in the northern Cascades mountain range in an Aug. 8, 2017 photo. U.S. Geological Survey photo by Aaron Johnston.

Carre joins the Pika Watch project this year as the Forest Service lead for research funded by the grant.

He said citizen science projects, like the pika project, offer to get members of the public interested in, excited about, and more knowledgeable about how science guides forest planning and natural resources management decisions.

“It’s the best way for a conservation ethic to be perpetuated,” he said. “The way to get people to sustain and preserve natural resources is by getting them involved.”

The Forest Service’s CitSci Fund was established this year, under the provisions of the 2017 Citizen Science Act (Section 402 of the American Innovation and Competitiveness Act).

“Citizen science” involves the public in scientific research, and offers unique opportunities to capitalize on the enthusiasm of volunteers, educate the public, and engage citizens in science conducted by federal agencies for the benefit of all Americans.

For example, NASA’s Backyard Worlds: Planet 9 project recruits citizen scientists to help analyze images collected by a radio telescope in search of a hypothesized 9th planet orbiting beyond Neptune in our solar system. In it’s first year, participants did not find any new planets, but have found 17 previously undiscovered brown dwarf stars.

For this first year, the Forest Service’s CitSci Fund received 172 applications for funding from citizen science projects across the country.

Each project is co-led by a Forest Service employee and a partner organization staff member, and designed in a manner that requires volunteers provide meaningful contributions to the scientific process – such as project design, data collection, or conducting experiments.

The agency selected six projects to receive up to $25,000 each in CitSci funds.

In addition to the Cascade Pika Watch award, Rocky Mountain Wild and the Denver Zoo also received funds to study a population of American pika in their alpine ecosystem habitat on the White River National Forest in Colorado.

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American pika:

Citizen Science:

USDA Forest Service — Pacific Northwest region staff report

An American pika collects grass and flowers on a field of rocky talus

An American pika collects grass and flowers to stockpile its winter food supplies in this Aug. 9, 2014 photo by Will Thompson, U.S. Geological Survey