The UNAVCO, Inc. Plate Boundary Observatory (PBO) Student Field Assistant Program strives to engage students in further study and careers in the Earth Sciences. Student Field Assistants from a variety of educational backgrounds ranging from high school graduates to master's level students spend a three to five month field season working in tandem with UNAVCO regional Field Engineers. The students work closely with senior staff to reconnaissance, install, and maintain a network of 875 permanent Global Positioning System (GPS) stations in one of the five PBO regions covering the western United States, including Alaska. Practical skills, such as power tool use, drilling, welding, firearms training, and proper field safety procedures, are taught and expected of the students. Installation and maintenance of new and existing GPS stations composes the bulk of the student's responsibilities and duties. When not in the field, students prepare gear and arrange logistics for site installations and maintenance as well as enter metadata and complete installation reports from recently constructed sites. An understanding of the operations of the GPS receivers and the scientific benefit of the network allows for an appreciation and great attention to detail during installation of the sites.