NPS GIS White Sands National Park
Located in the Tularosa Basin of Southern New Mexico, White Sands National Park protects over 150,000 acres of gypsums dunes, playa, and desert brush. The park is home to archeological resources that span all of human occupation in the Tularosa Basin, the world’s largest collection of fossilized footprints (including human, mammoth, giant sloth, camel, dire wolf, American lion, and bison), as well as many endemic plant and animal species, and several unique geological features. Accurate geospatial data is a fundamental component to understanding all of these resources. Examining resources in a geospatial context allows the Resource Management team to study the interaction of these resources and determine the best methods to preserve and protect them. The intern will work with WHSA and NPS Geographic Resources Division (GRD) staff to review and update existing spatial data to geodatabases using standardized NPS templates and establish workflows for the creation and maintenance of future spatial data. The intern will be stationed at WHSA in southern New Mexico and receive initial training and ongoing support from NPS GRD staff in Lakewood, CO.
The GIS intern will be responsible for (1) reviewing legacy datasets for source accuracy and completing metadata as necessary, (2) standardizing datasets using NPS geodatabase templates, and (3) work with the Resource Management team to develop a GIS program plan for future data collection and management. Existing datasets include locational data for archeological, paleontological, and biological resources, LiDAR and IFSAR for most of the park, as well as geophysical and photogrammetry datasets. Work will be completed using ArcGIS Pro, ArcGIS Online, Collector for ArcGIS, and Survey123.
A successful candidate will have a strong foundation in GIS, be familiar with basic spatial data standards, and must be comfortable managing and editing feature classes in a geodatabase. The candidate should be proficient using ESRI ArcGIS software. Completed coursework in geology, paleontology, anthropology, or archeology is preferred, but not required. Candidates should be comfortable working independently, and as a part of a group. Most work will be conducted in a climate-controlled office, but the intern will also be asked to assist Resource Management staff in fieldwork, which may include travel via UTV, electric bike, and/or hiking in a desert climate with temperatures up to 110 degrees Fahrenheit. The position requires the ability to take initiative, communicate effectively, and work independently, as well as participate effectively in collaborative efforts.