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COAST Student Internships Summer 2017

​​Cordell Bank National Marine Sanctuary 

Benthic Science Internship​


Host:  NOAA Cordell Bank National Marine Sanctuary (CBNMS)  

CBNMS is one of 14 special marine protected areas designated and administered by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Office of National Marine Sanctuaries. The mission of CBNMS is to provide comprehensive stewardship, conservation and protection for the ecosystems of the sanctuary. To accomplish this, CBNMS administers programs that focus on conducting and coordinating research and monitoring, organizing and carrying out education and outreach within local communities, and ensuring natural resources are protected while allowing uses that are sustainable.

Location: Based in Point Reyes Station in rural west Marin County, 90 minutes north of San Francisco, CBNMS offices are located within the Point Reyes National Seashore. The intern may travel occasionally to coastal communities between San Francisco and Point Arena in northern California. 

Internship Dates: June 5 - August 18, 2017; start and end dates flexible with regard to student’s academic commitments. Availability in August is preferred.  

Stipend: $5,000

Time Commitment: The internship is a full time, 11-week commitment. Over the 11 weeks, the intern may take up to five days off for personal reasons, vacation, or illness. If participation is less than 100%, the stipend will be pro-rated.

Internship Focus: One (1) internship is offered with CBNMS to assist with benthic surveys of Cordell Bank using a remotely-operated vehicle (ROV) and to create data and outreach products from benthic surveys. CBNMS will complete an ROV survey on the bank in late summer 2017. The intern will work closely with the sanctuary Research Coordinator to learn about the mission and explore and develop product ideas. The intern will assist with the planning, preparations, and execution of the ROV survey and will be an integral part of the science team on this mission. Responsibilities include logistics planning, equipment preparation, data management, and photo and video editing. Additional tasks include preparing interpretive and outreach products before, during, and after the mission. One possible product is the development of a taxonomic guide of the deep-sea organisms of Cordell Bank. Another product may be a catalog of photos and videos for education and outreach, social media, and addition to the sanctuary media library. The intern will learn about underwater data collection for research and monitoring, data management, science interpretation for education and outreach, and project management. 

Project Responsibilities:

​​1. Work with the Research Coordinator to identify project deliverables

2. Work with CBNMS ROV team to plan the 2017 ROV cruise

3. Participate in the ROV Cruise (approximately 6 days at sea)

4. Develop a scientific and/or outreach product, such as a taxonomic guide

​5. Use data and imagery collected during the cruise to develop products such as image catalog and social media posts

Preferred Experience and Capabilities:  Experience or academic training in resource management, environmental sciences, or biological sciences. The successful candidate must be highly organized with the ability to work independently as well as within a team setting, and be able to effectively communicate (orally and in writing). Ideal candidates should be self-motivated, creative, innovative, and comfortable working with a diverse team in a collaborative environment. Also important is the ability to effectively manage multiple projects, and enthusiasm about marine science, stewardship and conservation. Proficiency in using computers is essential. No previous experience with an ROV is required. Ability to work on boats in offshore, rough ocean environment will increase the opportunity to participate in sanctuary research missions offshore. 

Skills Gained: The intern will learn about current research and monitoring efforts underway at CBNMS, and gain an understanding of the importance of marine science and education to support resource management. The intern will gain experience working with a small team, and working independently to plan and create a product to enhance sanctuary conservation. Intern will learn how to operate within a small professional office and interact with research and education colleagues. Sanctuary office is co-located with National Park Service science campus so there will be daily opportunity to interact with Park science staff as well as sanctuary staff. 

Eligibility/Requirements:  The internship is intended for an upper-class undergraduate student (juniors/seniors) or graduate student, in good academic standing with their university. A valid California State driver’s license is required. Intern must be 18 years or older.​ Applicants are also subject to additional eligibility and requirements that can be found here​.​

Return to Announcement for Application and Additional Requirements​