COAST Student Internships Summer 2016

California Department of Fish and Wildlife Marine Region Marine Invertebrate Fisheries Management Internship


Host: The Mission of the Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) is to manage California's diverse fish, wildlife, and plant resources, and the habitats upon which they depend, for their ecological values and for their use and enjoyment by the public. The Marine Invertebrate Fisheries Management Team conducts ecosystem surveys, fisherman interviews, and laboratory-based ecological research to aid in science-based management of California’s marine invertebrate resources.

Location: Based in Bodega Bay at the University of California Davis Bodega Marine Lab (BML)

Internship Dates: June 6 - August 19, 2016; start and end dates flexible with regard to student’s academic commitments.

Stipend: $4,000.00

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.

Position Description and Responsibilities: One (1) internship is available working with CDFW scientists at BML to conduct research informing the management of California’s benthic marine invertebrate fisheries. The intern will aid in preparing for and conducting field surveys of invertebrate fishery species such as Dungeness Crab, abalone, and clams as well as collecting local kelp for feeding live animals housed in the CDFW laboratory at BML. Duties will also include providing support for laboratory experiments and fisher interviews to inform management. Additionally, the intern may lead a side project that is suited to the intern’s skills, experience and interests that satisfies CDFW needs. The intern may also assist staff in ongoing abalone management duties which include data entry and analysis, as well as preparation of materials for presentations and reports. During the field components of the work, the intern may accompany scientists on the CDFW patrol boats and other small boats. At the end of the internship, the intern will be expected to provide a report summarizing the results of the fisher interviews and field surveys.

Preferred Experience and Capabilities: This internship will require excellent verbal, written, and organizational skills. Experience with MS Office and Access Database is desired. Dive experience and knowledge of marine invertebrate taxonomy and ecology is a plus.

NOTE: Scientific diving is NOT required for placement in this internship. However, if you are a current AAUS scientific diver, you may have the opportunity to participate in CDFW-led dives as part of this internship.

Skills Gained: The intern will learn about the link between science and management of nearshore marine invertebrate fisheries and conservation in California. The intern will gain experience working with a team of investigators, including expert fisheries biologists and leading scientists, as well as interacting with the public during fisher interviews and surveys. The intern will learn about the process of planning, executing, and presenting scientific research to inform management and restore populations. Specific skills include data collection in nearshore coastal areas, invertebrate and fish identification, field collection of fisheries data, data analysis, and participation in applied research.

Eligibility/Requirements: The internship is intended for upperclassmen (juniors/seniors) and graduate students. Intern must be 18 years or older. Intern will be required to drive and must be able to get to the Bodega Marine Lab in Bodega Bay daily. Applicants must be able to work independently and interact in a professional manner with the public and other CDFW staff. Intern must be able to keep excellent notes and organize various streams of information into technical reports. Travel may be required aboard research vessels as needed to execute this project.

Applicants who wish to participate in SCUBA diving operations must include with their application: 1) a letter of reciprocity from their university’s dive safety officer (DSO) indicating that they are certified and authorized as a scientific diver (and will be for the duration of the internship) and 2) a short paragraph detailing their diving experience in temperate kelp forest conditions. They must also meet the following requirements:

  • Current AAUS certified Scientific Diver
  • DAN Insurance
  • Current AAUS-approved medical exam with physician approval
  • Current First Aid, CPR, and Emergency Oxygen Administration training
  • Minimum of 50 dives in cold water kelp forest environment
  • A minimum of 12 dives within the past year
  • Excellent underwater navigation skills
  • Scuba equipment serviced by an authorized technician within the last 12 months
  • Swim test and check-out dive
  • Ability to transport self and gear to office, lab and boat sites
  • Valid CA driver’s license

Applicants are also subject to additional eligibility and requirements that can be found here.

Return to Announcement for Application and Additional Requirements >>