The Marine Biology Internship Program
The Marine Biology Internship Program is designed to help you connect your academic studies to practical applications by offering academic credit for a marine biology-focused work experience. A well-designed internship will allow you to develop your professional skills, gain hands-on experience, and evaluate career opportunities. Internships may not be available for all terms at OIMB as they are dependent on availability at participating institutions.
Participating institutions include Coos Watershed, South Slough NERR, and ODFW. Students can also do internships for credit at the Charleston Marine Life Center.
OIMB Students Who Have Participated In An Internship
In 2018, I was chosen as the Our World-Underwater Society National Park Service intern. Over the course of the summer, I traveled to various National Parks and assisted with their ongoing archaeological, biological, and cultural programs. This unforgettable internship provided me with the opportunity to gain more diving and field experience, develop my underwater photography skills, work alongside a group of diverse individuals, and hone my science communication skills. In total, I completed 81 scientific dives, visited five National Parks, learned a multitude of new survey and collection techniques, and made 100s of new connections. The fantastic marine education I received from the Oregon Institute of Marine Biology was among the top reasons I was chosen for the OWUSS NPS internship. In addition, as an undergraduate at OIMB, I developed a strong work ethic and passion for fieldwork. My time at OIMB shaped me as a marine biologist and definitely contributed to my success as the 2018 OWUSS NPS intern.
Over the course of three months, I will be performing experiments to test the tolerance ranges of tropical sea urchin larvae to variable temperatures and salinity. Though most of my time is spend in the lab, I am also snorkeling at least once weekly to collect urchins from a nearby reef to spawn. I will also be kayaking now and then to collect snails from the mangroves in hopes that they will release their larvae in the lab so we can perform the same experiments on a different type of larva. I must say, as long as you can stand the heat (and the bug bites!), nothing beats field work in the tropics.
I just ended a 7 month internship in Bocas del Tora, Panama, researching at the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute. I worked mainly with urchins; collecting, spawning and raising their larvae and applying both chronic and acute stress situations. The goal of the research project, headed by Rachel Collin and Karen Chan, was the find out the tolerance ranges of the local urchins. i used variations in temperature, salinity, and dissolved oxygen concentrations to stress the urchin larvae and see what the larvae or the fertilization process itself, could withstand.
Panama was a wonderful place to be, I was able to get a look at how less privileged people than I live daily, yet the area also had a large tourism base, so there were plenty of fun activities like diving, snorkeling and zip lining. When I was not working I enjoyed kayaking around the island, trying to spot the sloths, howler monkeys, and other exotic creatures. I also enjoyed snorkeling and hanging out at the beach!
Apprenticeship Program at the Friday Harbor Labs of the University of Washington
The program is designed to give undergraduates and post-baccalaureate an intensive 10 week independent research experience. Students are paired with two researchers who assist with designing and executing individual research projects. Our team investigated the San Juan Archipelago’s pelagic ecosystem from top to bottom in order to understand how oceanographic processes shape patterns of pelagic communities. Other internships have focused on more lab based topics. The apprenticeships are an excellent opportunity to learn how to do marine research and my experience has helped me decide to which graduate programs I should apply.
Intern at the Seapoint Research Aquarium, Cape Town, South Africa IE3 Global Internships
The Seapoint Research Aquarium is a research facility that conducts projects on the marine organisms of South Africa including invertebrates, fish and birds. Interns assist a researcher with their work or conduct a study of interest to the intern. I am interested in a career in an aquarium so for my internship I worked raising a crustacean, Artemia salina. I studied best methods for culture which involved looking at their feeding, growth and population densities. It was a great way of obtaining knowledge, training, and work experience in this field for credit. Financial aid can be applied to this program and both the Study Abroad department on campus and IE3 offer scholarships for the internship. IE3 Biology internships are available in other regions of the world. I firmly believe no one will waste their time investing in their future by taking part in this amazing opportunity!