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2024 Facilities Department Residential Internship at Occidental Arts & Ecology Center - 19488

Job Title: 
2024 Facilities Department Residential Internship
Occidental Arts & Ecology Center
15290 Coleman Valley Rd.
95465 CA ,
Job Type: 
Employment Type: 
Job Description: 

Each year, OAEC hires a cohort of enthusiastic interns to live and learn at OAEC. Internships are approximately 24 hours per week. In exchange for their work, all interns are given a private, cozy place to live, community meals (including access to a fully-stocked kitchen, pantry, and on-site garden veggies and orchard) and use of all OAEC facilities (hot tub, swimming pond, etc.) Interns also receive free participation in the OAEC Permaculture Design Course, a $500 monthly stipend, and generous vacation and sick leave. Interns take part in the life of the residential community and participate in community cooking and chore rotations. There may be opportunities for additional paid work on site, though these are coordinated separately from the internship.

Duties & Responsibilities: 

The Facilities Internship tackles the usual array of facilities related work that maintains and improves the infrastructure at OAEC. The facilities intern works in areas such as carpentry, plumbing, electrical, woodworking and forest management. Tasks vary from simple, quick repairs to multi-week construction projects. While much of what we do is functional in its approach, we do not pass up an opportunity to employ an artistic sensibility in our work.

There are two Facilities Interns: one will do a typical internship of 24 hrs./wk. of work in the department in exchange for room, board and stipend. The second internship is a hybrid position of 24 hrs./wk. with the Facilities team, and an additional 10-15 hrs./wk., on average, as a Retreat Assistant (see separate job description for Retreat Assistant below). Please be clear in your application whether you want to apply for only one position or the other, or if you are open to either arrangement.

Typical Tasks
Facilities Interns will have the opportunity to learn many of the following types of work, depending on the needs of the organization throughout the year:
Regular maintenance responsibilities of OAEC infrastructure including potable and agricultural water, septic systems, retreat center needs, energy systems, etc.
Carpentry and furniture building, based on skills and aptitude of intern.
Electrical and plumbing, new work and remodel
Wildlands and tree work.
Roof care and replacement
Painting and staining
Maintaining aesthetic standards of the site to serve retreat center, community, and staff needs.
Chop wood and carry water.

General Qualifications
Basic understanding of trade skills (e.g. carpentry, plumbing, electrical, painting, tile, etc.). Proficiency in one or more areas is preferred.
Ability to easily lift 60 lbs. throughout the day.
Ability to easily take instruction and apply lessons.
Curiosity about how things go together.
A sense of joy in working hard and a job well done.
Retreat Assistant

As part of the hybrid Facilities Intern/Retreat Assistant position, you will be salaried at 10-15 hours/week (number of hours to be solidified by the start of the program). The Retreat Assistant is a key residential position at OAEC in helping to make our guests feel at home when they come here to do important work towards social change. Before applying, please visit our Movement Building page to learn more about our Group Retreats and the types of groups we serve.

Retreat Assistant Details
The Retreat Assistant is an hourly position paid at $28/hour.
Frequency of retreats fluctuates throughout the year. When we do not have retreats scheduled there are few responsibilities for the Retreat Assistant, but when we have retreats scheduled the Retreat Assistant will be very busy. If the Retreat Assistant gets behind more than 2 weeks in hours during slow retreat times, these hours are to be made up in the facilities department and arranged with the Facilities Manager.
Shifts are primarily on Mondays, Fridays, weekends and after 5pm on weekdays.
While the OAEC internships end Friday, December 20, 2024, the residential Retreat Assistant responsibilities will carry through until February 12, 2025. Only apply if you can commit through staying on site and continue as a Retreat Assistant for the extra two months.

Retreat Assistant Typical Tasks
Serve as host and point person for groups staying at OAEC outside of business hours.
Complete standard hosting tasks including, but not limited to, greeting guests, orienting groups to the guest housing and the land, tidying spaces used by rental groups, making coffee, restocking the kitchenette, setting up the fire circle etc.
Engage with the groups in a professional, service-oriented manner, being mindful and respectful of the needs of the group and the work they are doing.
Attend to Retreat Group’s emergent needs and any changes in plan.
Answer questions about OAEC policy that a group may ask.
Deal with emergencies/safety issues.
Work closely with the Retreat Manager to ensure the hosting calendar and shifts are filled.
Retreat Assistant Qualifications

For this position, we are searching for a responsible candidate who can independently handle a wide range of problem solving for both the facilities and our guests.

Experience in hospitality or customer service is a plus, but proven reliability, professionalism and courtesy are paramount.
Excitement in working with the diverse groups of activists working for racial, social and environmental justice who come from all over the country and world to OAEC.
Ability to work well alone or as part of a team.
Ability to be flexible with hours and work assignments.
A valid driver’s license & clean driving record.
Comfortable with responding to emergencies/safety issues.

Application Instructions: 

To Apply:
Applications open on August 1st. Deadline to apply is November 1st. Early application is highly encouraged!
Complete the Intern Application (google form – will begin accepting responses on August 1st). You can go back and edit your responses at any time.
Upload a PDF of your cover letter and resume for each department you are applying for.
Enter your references as prompted in the form.
Upload an optional photo (not required.)
Questions regarding internship applications can be directed to

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