USFS Pacific Northwest New Employee Orientation


It is Macy reporting about life as an RA in the Pacific Northwest Regional Office of Communication and Community Engagement (OCCE)! This month was fun! Things have certainly began to pick up pace, and I am getting to know the nature of work in the OCCE much better. Spring usually brings lots more to do in community engagement and partnerships, so I have been quite busy this month preparing for new agreements with local partners, planning events, and working with the community engagement team. I also spent a good chunk of time preparing for April, National Volunteer Month! It has been very wholesome and fulfilling to read all about the wonderful volunteers from all across Washington and Oregon! I am excited to celebrate them next month. However, this blog post will focus on my first in person engagement…

New Employee Orientation 2024! (NEO)

Hosting an annual New Employee Orientation (NEO) falls under the duties of the OCCE (employee engagement). So, although I am also a new employee, I attended this event to help run the event, not participate. New Employee Orientation’s are held in each region to welcome new employees and teach them a bit more about the values, history, and more about the agency. This years NEO for the PNW region of the Forest Service was a three day event held in Seaside Oregon!

A photo from outside the convention center in Seaside, Oregon.

I got to listen in on plenty of amazing sessions and meet some incredible people! The week started off with a speech from THE Chief of the Forest Service, Randy Moore! This was a rare and amazing opportunity to hear the leader of such a large agency speak! Chief Moore spoke so eloquently and very warmly welcomes the 120 new employees in attendance! Something that truly struck me throughout the entire orientation was the ways in which leadership truly showed up. Along with the Chief himself, ALL of the regional leadership showed up for this orientation and not only spoke to the group, but offered themselves up for small group lunches, coffee hours, and casual chats with everyone there. It was so impressive to see them take time out of their extremely busy jobs and be so present in welcoming a new group of employees.

Chief Randy Moore speaking at the Region 6 (PNW) NEO 2024.

Throughout NEO, I helped with organizational things, such as making welcome bags, checking people in, microphone running, helping people get to where they need to be, and more! It was amazing to meet the OCCE team in person and get to know my coworkers beyond the screen! They were all so welcoming and truly happy to have me there. Overall, it was such a fulfilling week working in person for the first time and getting to learn a ton!

My headshot from the event!

Thanks for reading! Happy Spring!

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