Internships

UCSC Campus Natural Reserve Continuous Forest Inventory (CFI Fall 2015) interns measure tree growth rates.

"This internship has succeeded in helping me feel part of the UCSC community. I am learning more about the different career paths one can pursue if they decide to major in environmental sciences or studies, and I am expanding my knowledge of flora and fauna and how to identify them."

- CNR remote-learning intern, First year, Fall 2020

CNR intern observes tree growth rings in core sampleEach university quarter, UCSC undergraduates from a variety of majors intern with UC Santa Cruz Campus Natural Reserve staff. The UCSC Environmental Studies Internship Office and additional agencies across campus facilitate the ability for students to earn credit for taking part in our offerings. Students range from first-quarter freshman to graduating seniors and each spends between 6 and 15 hours a week working on a variety of projects on the reserve. Reserve staff and paid student crew leaders lead interns in a wide variety of field-based research and hands-on-learning experiences in and around our 409-acre Reserve; a unique living laboratory and outdoor classroom.

 

UCSC Campus Natural Reserve Internships - Spring 2021

NOTICE: We will be primarily offering only remote internships for Spring 2021. In solidarity with public health!

An average of 6 hours per week of internship work will earn you 2-credits through the  ENVS Internship Office (see their website for other internship requirements beyond the 6-hour requirement). [In non-COVID times: Our internships require a sense of adventure and willingness and ability to work off-trail in sometimes challenging terrain. Poison oak is abundant, and though we provide coverall suits, gloves, and Technu, participation isn’t recommended if you know you are highly sensitive to poison oak.] See internship descriptions below for directons on how to apply. All Undergraduate UCSC students, regardless of major, are welcome to apply. Please contact us with your questions!

 

REMOTE INTERNSHIPS

Podcast internshipApply here (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting TBD; 8 interns max)
This internship features an outdoor component and an indoor component.
Outdoors: Develop skills of natural history observation through field journaling exercises at a location near your home. Using field journal prompts, initially, you will dive into the use of a field journal as a way to deepen your connection to place, build identification skills, and practice inquiry.
Indoors:  Produce podcast episodes exploring intersections of people and nature. This will entail making some audio field recordings, conducting interviews via Zoom, writing and recording narration, and learning basic audio editing using Audacity, an open-source software, to produce final products. Tutorials and mentorship provided! Listen to the first two seasons of our podcast, Sheltered Spring, at any of the following links: Spotify, Google Play, Apple Podcast, Anchor. The theme of Spring Quarter's podcast will relate to new growth and hope, in the context of spring at your sit spot and in the (hopefully!) changing status of the pandemic as vaccinations continue.
Weekly Zoom meetings focus on building and supporting a community of naturalists, training on the technical aspects of audio editing, and creative production work as a group.

Natural History practiceApply here (weekly 1 to 1.5 hour Zoom meeting TBD; lots of positions available)

This internship features outdoor and indoor components. 
Outdoors: Develop skills of natural history observation and inquiry through field journaling exercises at a location near your home. Using field journal prompts, initially, you will dive into the use of a field journal as a way to deepen your connection to place, build identification skills, and practice inquiry. You will also work on field exercises that will allow you to quantify diversity parameters such as species richness, which we will compare across all interns' field sites.
Indoors: For the indoor portion of the internship, you will explore a variety of ways to gather naturalist information online, including using maps and community science platforms. You will use iNaturalist and eBird to contribute your observations to these larger community science efforts. Some time will also be dedicated to peer-review of and providing feedback on a partner's field journal entries.
Weekly Zoom meetings focus on building and supporting a community of naturalists, peer review and discussion of field journal and other work, and short natural history presentations from the Agency Sponsor and interns. 
Rare species info guideApply here (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting TBD; 2 interns max)
This internship features an outdoor component and an indoor component.
Outdoors: Develop skills of natural history observation through field journaling exercises at a location near your home. Using field journal prompts, initially, you will dive into the use of a field journal as a way to deepen your connection to place, build identification skills, and practice inquiry.
Indoors:  Conduct literature and reputable website research on UCSC's rare plant and animal species with the goal of creating pdf fact sheets to be posted on the UCSC Campus Natural Reserve and Ken Norris Center for Natural History websites. (These fact sheets will later be modified into a formatted information guide to UCSC's rare species, but not this winter). After searching reputable agency websites, gray literature and peer-reviewed literature, you will compile and write information on the natural history, identification characteristics, regulatory status, what we know about the species from recent peer-reviewed literature, and distribution and status on the UCSC campus.
Weekly Zoom meetings focus on building and supporting a community of naturalists, troubleshooting research and formatting issues, and short natural history presentations from the Agency Sponsor and interns.

LIMITED IN-PERSON FIELD INTERNSHIPS WILL OCCUR IN SPRING 2021 DUE TO COVID-19 

 TBD

 

Additional Opportunities

In addition to our official offerings each quarter, we help students to design their own projects on the UCSC Campus Natural Reserve. Prospective applicants can contact our office with experiment, project, and thesis ideas. These opportunities are generally set up one or more quarters in advance, so that reserve staff can set aside appropriate time and resources. Select major programs allow for this work to apply toward degree credit. Contact our office for more details.