Internships

Right Whale Ecology Program – Habitat Internship

The Center for Coastal Studies (CCS) is seeking a seasonal Right Whale Ecology Program intern from January 04 – May 29, 2021.

This long-term project focuses on documenting the abundance, distribution, and behavior of North Atlantic right whales and their food resource in Cape Cod Bay and adjacent Massachusetts waters. The intern will assist the habitat research associate in the collection and processing of zooplankton in the field and lab. Fieldwork responsibilities include zooplankton collection through tow and pump techniques, marine observer, and environmental data collector. Lab responsibilities include zooplankton species identification and counts, plastics analysis, archiving samples, data entry and maintenance, and maintaining field equipment.

Minimum Requirements

  • A college degree, preferably in biological/ environmental sciences
  • Good memorization skills and strong attention to details
  • Basic computer literacy and experience using Microsoft Office programs (Excel, Word, PowerPoint). Experience with database entry and management is preferred
  • Experience working on boats, ability to withstand harsh elements, and not be prone to serious seasickness
  • Must be able to live and work well in a team
  • Enthusiasm and willingness to learn field and lab-based research methods
  • Strong attention to detail and ability to work well under pressure


Preferred Qualifications:

  • Plankton identification
  • Microscopy and laboratory experience
  • Not prone to seasickness
  • A valid US driver’s license

The successful applicant will be required to work a minimum of four full days per week and will need to be flexible for research cruises due to weather constrictions. The intern will often process zooplankton samples independently in the lab, thus responsible, detail-oriented applicants are encouraged to apply. Applicants must be available for the full five months and must be willing to work weekends, holidays and evenings as needed. Housing will be provided, as well as a small stipend to cover general living expenses. International applicants must secure their own visas or other required documentation.

CCS has a long history of conservation and research work with the North Atlantic right whale and Cape Cod Bay has been a major critical habitat for over 50% of the estimated population in recent years. This is an excellent opportunity for anyone wishing to expand their skills in marine mammal survey techniques and zooplankton analysis; and will offer the successful applicant the unique chance to work with one of the world’s most endangered cetaceans. This internship will afford the successful applicant an invaluable opportunity to work within a well-established institution, with highly-qualified scientists, and to gain experience in boat-based research, zooplankton and environmental collections, plankton identification, plastic analysis, and data entry and analysis. Details of our work can be found on our website: https://coastalstudies.org/right-whale-research/

How to Apply:

The application package should include the following attachment(s):

  • A cover letter describing your specific interests in marine mammal science, internship qualifications, and how the experience would assist you in reaching career goals
  • CV/resume
  • College transcripts (unofficial are sufficient)
  • The names and contact information of two references

Application materials must be e-mailed to: Stephanie Richardson, srichardson@coastalstudies.org with the following text in the subject line: 2020 RW habitat internship.

Deadline for submissions: September 30th, 2020

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Right Whale Ecology Program – Aerial Observer Internship

The Center for Coastal Studies (CCS) is seeking a seasonal intern in the Right Whale Ecology Program from 04 January – 29 May 2021.

This long-term project focuses on documenting the abundance, distribution and behavior of North Atlantic right whales and their food resource in Cape Cod Bay and adjacent Massachusetts waters. The intern will be the primary vessel observer for the project and will participate in research cruises up to four days a week. Fieldwork responsibilities include photographing critically endangered North Atlantic right whales, collecting behavioral and environmental data, recording other sightings events (species, vessels and fishing gear), and working with a habitat research team both in the field and office. Office responsibilities include photo-analysis (downloading images, inputting sightings information, matching individuals to known animals using an online and in-house catalog, cataloging), database entry and maintenance, assisting the aerial team and maintaining vessel field equipment.

Minimum Requirements:

  • A college degree, preferably in biological/ environmental sciences
  • Previous marine mammal survey experience, including background in photo-identification of large cetaceans
  • Experience with digital SLR cameras, lenses, and filters
  • Basic computer literacy and working knowledge of Microsoft Office programs (Excel, Word, PowerPoint). Experience with database entry and management is preferred
  • Experience working on boats, ability to withstand harsh elements, and not be prone to serious seasickness
  • Must be able to live and work well in a team
  • Enthusiasm and willingness to learn field and lab-based research methods
  • Strong attention to detail and ability to work well under pressure

Preferred Qualifications:

  • Experience using iMatch image database software
  • Experience using GPS equipment
  • Ability to estimate object ranges from a vessel
  • Not prone to seasickness
  • A valid US driver’s license

The successful applicant will be required to work a minimum of four full days per week and will need to be flexible for research cruises due to weather constrictions. The intern will often collect data independently in the field, thus responsible, detail-oriented applicants are encouraged to apply. Applicants must be available for the full field season and must be willing to work weekends, holidays and evenings as needed. Housing will be provided, as well as a small stipend to cover general living expenses. International applicants must secure their own visas or other required documentation.

CCS has a long history of conservation and research work with the North Atlantic right whale and Cape Cod Bay has been a major critical habitat for over 50% of the estimated population in recent years. This is an excellent opportunity for anyone wishing to expand their skills in marine mammal survey techniques, and will offer the successful applicant the unique chance to work with one of the world’s most endangered cetaceans. This internship will afford the successful applicant an invaluable opportunity to work within a well-established institution, with highly-qualified scientists, and to gain experience in photo-identification, matching, and data entry and analysis. Experience in oceanographic sampling can also be gained. Details of our work can be found on our website: https://coastalstudies.org/right-whale-research/

How to Apply:

The application package should include the following attachment(s):

  1. A cover letter describing your specific interests in marine mammal science, internship qualifications, and how the experience would assist you in reaching career goals
  2. CV/resume
  3. College transcripts (unofficial are sufficient)
  4. The names and contact information of two references

Application materials must be emailed to Stephanie Richardson, srichardson@coastalstudies.org, with the subject line: 2021 RW Observer Internship

Deadline for submissions: September 30, 2020.

Contact Us

Entanglement Hotline: (800) 900-3622
ccs@coastalstudies.org
(508) 487-3622
5 Holway Avenue
Provincetown, MA 02657
(508) 487-3623

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