Wildlife Conservation Internships
There are many different internship opportunities in the field of wildlife conservation. Here is a sampling of some currently available opportunities in this field:
- The American Bear Association (in Minnesota) offers summer internships at the Vince Shute Wildlife Sanctuary, where students have the opportunity to promote the conservation of black bears. Interns present educational programs, welcome visitors to the facility, prepare food for the bears, maintain bear activity logs, and maintain the facility, among other tasks. Extremely rustic on-site housing is provided, as well as all meals.
- The Conservation and Land Management program (sponsored by the Chicago Botanic Garden) offers paid five-month internships to students. Students gain experience in such areas as entomology, biology, wildlife biology, and zoology. The CLM internship then places students at various government agency partners including the Bureau of Land Management, the National Park Service, and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Interns earn approximately $13,200 ($15 per hour) and there are 75–100 internship placements available each year.
- The Montana Conservation Corps offers summer conservation internships through a network of fourteen federal agencies and nonprofit groups in Montana, Idaho, and North Dakota. The internships run from May to August and involve work in areas such as conservation, biology, and the environmental sciences. Internships are paid opportunities, with interns receiving a $504 stipend to cover their living expenses on a bi-weekly basis. They also receive a $1,195 AmeriCorps award upon the successful completion of their internship.
- The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) offers a paid internship program at its Pacific Islands Fisheries Science Center in Hawaii. Interns are assigned to work directly with a mentor while working in an area of study such as fish ecology, coral reef ecology, fishery economics, or stock assessment. The program lasts from 8–12 weeks each summer. Applicants must be rising juniors or seniors in college with a major in a related area such as marine science.
- REEF Marine Conservation Internships (in Key Largo, Florida) are offered to upper-level college students and recent college graduates. Interns are involved with identifying specimens, performing dissections, diving, and snorkeling, conducting educational presentations, general facility maintenance, and administrative tasks. Applicants must have basic open water scuba certification and their own set of scuba gear. Internships run for four months and are unpaid, but there are a few $2,000 scholarships available to cover travel and living expenses.
- The Student Conservation Association (SCA) offers a wide variety of internship opportunities, some of which are animal-related internships. The SCA internships are continually changing. However, studying bats, tracking white-tailed deer, performing wildlife management field work with birds, collecting field data on sea turtles, and participating in endangered species protection with several different types of animal are some of the basic offerings. Internships are expense-paid but students are encouraged to inquire about additional compensation in the form of stipends or benefits.
- The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service offers a large variety of internship opportunities for enrolled high school and college students, as well as recent college graduates on an on-going basis, at dozens of locations across the country. Interns can focus in the area of conservation, marine biology, wildlife management, and wildlife education. The internships are paid, and many offer free housing.
More Wildlife Internship Opportunities
If none of the programs above are of interest, you can explore internship possibilities related to wildlife by visiting wildlife rehabilitation internships, zoo internships, insect internships, avian internships, and marine mammal internships.