Campus Steward

About Aprovecho: Aprovecho is a non-profit organization located on a beautiful forty-acre land trust outside of Cottage Grove, Oregon.  Aprovecho, which means “I make best use of” in Spanish, gained its name from the spirit of a sustainable approach to resource use in the creation and sustenance of human culture that the early founders observed in their international development work. Aprovecho’s land and its community of educators is a regional resource for researching, demonstrating, and educating the techniques and strategies of sustainable living. We are a school dedicated to teaching sustainable living, homesteading, and eco-trade skills.

Overview: The Campus Steward is primarily responsible for maintenance and upkeep of Aprovecho campus facilities/site.  This is a 15 – 20 hour/week non-exempt position with flexible hours.  

Key Responsibilities

The position requires a broad skill set.  There are no ‘official’ minimum requirements.  Rather, the candidate must posses both hard and soft skills.  Soft skills, often overlooked, are a critical component to this position.  They involve the following:

  • Flexibility
  • Patience
  • Communication
  • Resilience
  • Motivation
  • Capacity to learn and adapt

Hard skills involve the following:

  • Tools/Technology
    • Automotive
      • carry out regular automotive maintenance – such as oil change, tune up, tires, fuel, battery
      • train staff/volunteers in basic auto protocol
      • coordinate in-depth automotive with external businesses/contractors as needed
    • Tools/Shop
      • forestry tools (chainsaw, brush saw, weed-wacker)
      • shop tools (saws, drills, hand tools)
    • Appropriate Technologies
      • e.g. basic solar, pedal powered, greywater, passive heating/cooling
  • Building Maintenance
    • carry out basic electrical, plumbing, carpentry, roofing in collaboration with appropriate staff, intern, students
    • coordinate in-depth electrical, plumbing, carpentry, roofing as needed with external businesses and appropriate staff
  • Grounds/Facilities
    • carry out basic land stewardship in collaboration with appropriate staff, intern, students, most especially in partnership with Aprovecho Land Steward.
      • Example activities include: mowing, pruning,
    • coordinate in-depth land stewardship in collaboration with appropriate staff, intern, students
      • example facilities include: gates, fences, arbors,
  • Educational Activity support
    • Collaboration with staff for material and site needs associated with learning experience
    • some direct support with learning experiences (e.g, hands – on building projects)
  • Other site supports:
    • Basic road maintenance
    • recycling and material drop off (e.g, trash) and retrieval (e.g. sawdust for compost)
    • Basic Internet and Utilities Support

Seasonal Responsibilities

Position has a regular seasonal work flow. Regular activities, organized seasonally, involve the following:

  • Fall Season
    • sweep chimneys
    • clean gutters
    • tree maintenance
    • winterize campus:
      • drain all outdoor plumbing (garden hoses, bathroom, aquaponics)
      • close/drain springwater system
      • Activate all external thermostat outlets on campus (under strawbale porch, pumphouse)
  • Winter Season
    • in-depth indoor repairs requiring limited use (i.e. no – residential programs)
    • Gate and fencing repair
    • tool inventory, replacement, repair,
  • Spring Season
    • Activate outdoor plumbing system,
    • de-winterize electrical systems
    • support upcoming educational programming site/material needs
    • support springtime land stewardship (primarily vegetation and hydrology)
    • Automotive repairs/supports
    • Coordinate volunteer work party
  • Summer Season
    • Problem solve and remedy immediate issues resulting from peak season high-use
    • Coordinate volunteer work party

Near Term, 1-3 year, Objectives

In addition to seasonal responsibilities, the Campus Steward will, in collaboration with other staff, interns, students, complete several discrete projects.  There are five projects which have been identified for completion in the next 1-3 years.  The Campus Steward will be involved in these projects and they are:     

  • Shop Overhaul
    • Repair external blacksmith shop roof
    • Update lighting
    • tool repair/procurement
  • Meeting Hall finalization:
    • external doors
    • upstairs electrical
    • internal doors
    • heaters
  • Strawbale dorm
    • redo kitchen counter-tops
    • properly install commercial stove
  • Basic overhaul of Root cellar
  • Basic campus (not boneyard) cleanup

Compensation:

  • Starting wage is $12/hour.  
  • Employee has access to highly reduced housing and facilities on campus
  • Skill dependent, employee has opportunities for further employment on campus
  • Weekly and monthly schedule is very flexible
  • Employee may take 6 unpaid weeks off per year

How To Apply:

Accepting applications until filled.  For full consideration, please send your application no later than Sunday October 1st.  Applications will first be reviewed on Monday October 2nd. Please send a resume or CV and brief letter of interest (2 pages max).  Please send your application and any questions about this position to Steven Braun:  steve@aprovecho.net.