Cartographic Technician (GIS) Internship

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Valley Forge National Historical Park

  • 4 people are interested

Park Information:
Located approximately 20 miles northwest of center city Philadelphia, Valley Forge was the site of the 1777-78 winter encampment of George Washington and the Continental Army. The park commemorates the sacrifices and perseverance of the Revolutionary War generation and honors the ability of citizens to pull together and overcome adversity during extraordinary times. (

Position Summary:
Are you passionate about preserving cultural and natural resources for future generations to enjoy? Valley Forge National Historical Park (the park) contains hundreds of archeological sites, dating as far back as 10,000 years ago. This includes sites from pre-contact Native American occupations, the 1777-1778 winter encampment of the Continental Army, and historic occupations from before and after the encampment. It is also home to over 1,300 species of vascular plants and vertebrates, a variety of vegetation communities (e.g. forest, meadows, wetlands), and includes significant water resources (i.e., Schuylkill River, Valley Creek). The Cartographic Technician (GIS) Internship at Valley Forge NHP is designed to provide college-level students the opportunity to gain valuable hands-on experience in GIS laboratory and field techniques. Under the direct supervision of the park Geographic Information Systems (GIS) specialist, the intern will perform a wide variety of tasks involved in the development of cartographic products, including but not limited to: GIS technical support functions; Global Positioning System (GPS) and Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) utilization; and field data collection, compilation, editing, and production (manual or digital).

Benefits for Intern:

  • Internship course credit as established by student’s university.
  • Receive complementary training (e.g., ESRI’s ArcGIS, AGOL, and Collector app software, GPS/ GNSS utilization, etc.).
  • Learn and apply a variety of knowledge and skills necessary to preserve, protect, and manage resources.
  • Meet others who share your passion for cultural and natural resource preservation.
  • Be eligible for the National Park Service (NPS) Volunteers-in-Parks (VIP) perks (e.g. The Volunteer Pass to federal lands and recreation sites).
  • Be eligible for the Valley Forge National Historical Park (VF NHP) VIP perks (e.g. annual appreciation luncheon, 20% discount, etc.).
  • Deepen your appreciation of Valley Forge National Historical Park, each of our key partners, and how we collaborate to steward this land and its stories.

  • Be 18 years or older.
  • Ability and desire to follow applicable federal, state, and local laws/policies, as well as directions from staff and other volunteer leaders.
  • Ability to work alone or with other park staff with diverse backgrounds.
  • Ability to communicate courteously, accurately, and professionally with visitors,park staff, fellow interns, and volunteers.
  • Successfully complete orientation and training.
  • Successfully pass the NPS background check (required).
  • Ability to work outdoors and withstand prolonged periods of walking, standing, kneeling, and bending, on pavement or natural surfaces.
  • Be reliable, punctual, resourceful, and detail-oriented.
  • Have a working cell phone and a working email address.

Tasks & Responsibilities:
Specific internship activities will vary depending on current park needs and
projects, but will include some of the following duties and responsibilities:
  • Re-organize the park’s GIS data into NPS’ core data standards geodatabases.
  • Update current GIS data to comply with multiple NPS core data standards (i.e., Cultural Resources, Inventory and Monitoring Program, Vegetation Mapping Standards, general GIS data standards, etc.).
  • Create and/ or update Federal Geographic Data Committee (FGDC)- compliant metadata.
  • Use GPS/ GNSS and ESRI products (ArcGIS, ArcPro, AGOL, and the Collector App) to collect, process, and analyze spatial data.
  • Produce maps utilizing drawing standards (NPS-10, Section 508, etc.).
  • Georeference historic aerial photographs and maps.
  • Organize hard copy maps, flatten, digitize, and georeferenced.
  • Reconcile NPS internal archeological data (CRIS/ ASMIS) with state archeological data (Pennsylvania SHPO). Prepare NPS data for data comparison (e.g., separate buildings/ structures from below ground resources).
The intern will receive training from NPS staff in GIS and GPS/ GNSS use. The intern will also receive training in resource protection, as the GIS work will be in relation to supporting this mission of the NPS.

While we strive to create the safest environment possible, it is impossible to eliminate all potential hazards when working outdoors. Feel free to ask for more information on these or other topics. The Park will provide any necessary tools and safety equipment (e.g., head/ear/eye protection, gloves, etc.). NOTE: No personal property is required to perform the duties of this position. The park is not responsible for the loss or damage of any of personal items.

Additional safety tips include:
  • Self-Care: Interns should be prepared for each shift with drinking water, food, snacks, and any necessary personal medication.
  • Attire: For the office, interns should wear business casual attire with no slogans or offensive language. For the field, weather appropriate clothes should be used. Please wear work clothes that can become permanently stained.
Short Term Impact:
  • Tasks and duties will contribute to the completion of numerous projects of the park’s GIS program.
Long Term Impact:
  • In total, the work performed by the intern will support the park’s, and the National Park Service’s, main mission of resource protection.
The Cartographic Technician (GIS) Intern reports to the park Archeologist/GIS

John A. Turck, PhD (e. | p. 610.783.1028)

More opportunities with Valley Forge National Historical Park

No additional volunteer opportunities at this time.

About Valley Forge National Historical Park


1400 North Outer Line Drive, King of Prussia, PA 19406, US

Mission Statement

The National Park Service was created in the Organic Act of 1916. The new agency's mission as managers of national parks and monuments was clearly stated: " conserve the scenery and the natural and historic objects and the wild life therein and to provide for the enjoyment of the same in such manner and by such means as will leave them unimpaired for the enjoyment of future generations."


Valley Forge was the site of the 1777-78 winter encampment of the Continental Army. The park commemorates the sacrifices and perseverance of the Revolutionary War generation and honors the ability of citizens to pull together and overcome adversity during extraordinary times!


Mon Jan 06, 2020 - Fri May 01, 2020
08:00 AM - 04:00 PM  


1400 North Outer Line DriveKing of PrussiaKing of Prussia, PA 19406



  • Data Entry
  • Anthropology
  • Archeology
  • History




  • Must be at least 18
  • Orientation or Training
  • Semester hours/ time requirement of university program, or 100 hours (whichever is greater), at no less than 4-hour increments.
  • Be enrolled in a college degree program majoring in Geography, Cartography, or related field with a minimum GPA of 3.0 that must be maintained throughout the internship.

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