Ways to Get Involved

Whether you want to further conservation, learn more about nature or share your love of the outdoors, you’ve come to the right place. National wildlife refuges provide many opportunities for you to help your community and fish and wildlife by doing what you love.

National wildlife refuges partner with volunteers, youth groups, landowners, neighbors and residents of urban and coastal communities to make a lasting difference.

Find out how you can help make American lands healthier and communities stronger while doing something personally satisfying.

Volunteers: Gain new experiences and meet new people while helping to advance wildlife conservation.
Friends: Join neighbors in helping refuges restore habitat and expand access to green space.
Landowners: Learn how you can partner with the Fish and Wildlife Service to voluntarily restore land.
Local Groups: Find out how communities can work with refuges better for wildlife and people.
Youth: Explore paid and unpaid opportunities to learn and develop leadership skills.


Discover for yourself what tens of thousands of volunteers have learned: Volunteering for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is fun and rewarding in many ways. Master new skills. Meet new friends. Enjoy a sense of accomplishment from doing your part to further wildlife conservation for the pleasure of generations to follow. Check out our station's latest volunteer opportunities on volunteer.gov.

The refuge supports and encourages an active volunteer program. Depending on their skills, interests, and available time, volunteers can assist with the biological, outreach, maintenance, public use, educational or administrative tasks on the refuge. If you have the time and the willingness to make a commitment, we'd love to talk to you about your interests in volunteering on the refuge. Please call the refuge headquarters at 814-789-3585.

Attached are duties associated with these positions:

  • Biological Programs Assistant
  • Maintenance Helper
  • Office Assistant
  • Outreach and Education Assistant

We have two concrete slabs available for RVs with full hook-ups. There are also laundry and shower facilities. In order to qualify for the RV spots, individuals must sign an agreement to perform a certain number of volunteer hours per week on the refuge. Couples are asked to volunteer at least 24 hours per week each, in exchange for use of the site. Single persons are asked to volunteer at least 32 hours per week.  

Our Partners

Nature does not recognize human-made boundaries. In order to conserve our natural and cultural resources effectively, we must work with others to bridge these boundaries. Partnerships foster creative solutions to challenging situations and often the results are greater than the sum of the parts. Learn more about our local partners such as the ones below, and many more!

Education Programs

Open the door to a potentially life-changing experience. If you land a student internship, a fellowship or a volunteer opportunity at a national wildlife refuge national wildlife refuge
A national wildlife refuge is typically a contiguous area of land and water managed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service  for the conservation and, where appropriate, restoration of fish, wildlife and plant resources and their habitats for the benefit of present and future generations of Americans.

Learn more about national wildlife refuge
, fish hatchery or other Fish and Wildlife Service site, you’re bound to come away with new insights and excitement about conservation.

Biological Internships: Erie National Wildlife Refuge is excited to announce valuable and stimulating internship opportunities for the upcoming 2024 spring & summer season. See below for 2024 Announcements:

ACE Invasive Species Members

American Conservation Experience, a nonprofit Conservation Corps, in partnership with Erie National Wildlife Refuge, is seeking One Invasive Species Member to contribute to mapping and management of invasive species invasive species
An invasive species is any plant or animal that has spread or been introduced into a new area where they are, or could, cause harm to the environment, economy, or human, animal, or plant health. Their unwelcome presence can destroy ecosystems and cost millions of dollars.

Learn more about invasive species
as well as other biological projects alongside Erie National Wildlife Refuge Staff. Members will primarily assist with mapping and management of invasive plants, and may travel to nearby refuges to assist with projects. Members will also have the opportunity to participate in other activities on the refuge. 

For a position overview, information on benefits, and instructions on how to apply, click here.

Youth Conservation Corps (YCC)

The Youth Conservation Corps Program (YCC) is a summer employment program for young men and women from all segments of society, who work, earn, and learn together doing outdoor conservation projects at Erie National Wildlife Refuge.  The work is planned to provide enrollees with a better understanding of their environment and the management of our natural resources.  Typical work includes trail maintenance, painting, invasive species removal, landscaping and weed control and trash pickup. 

A youth conservation corps (YCC) member carries a wooden beam to construct a new bridge along a refuge trail.

Those interested in the Youth Conservation Corps (YCC) program for the summer of 2024 can find general information and the application here

Completed applications may be emailed to erie@fws.gov or mailed to Erie National Wildlife Refuge, 11296 Wood Duck Lane, Guys Mills 16327.  Applications are due by Tuesday, April 16.