Fall 2020 COVID 19 Update
The Kachemak Bay campus of Kenai Peninsula College regrets to announce that due to the safety challenges associated with Covid19, we will be canceling the fall 2020 Semester By the Bay program. If you would like to discuss this with our staff please contact us at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Fall 2020 Community-Based Internship and Volunteer Opportunities for Students attending Semester by the Bay
Several Federal, State, and non-profit organizations in the Homer area offer internship and volunteer opportunities for students participating in Semester by the Bay. Internships must be applied for and may be taken for 3 credits of Biology A495A Internship in the Biological Sciences.*
To participate, you will apply to three agencies. Read through the list below and determine your top 3 choices, then complete the Internship Placement Application. The form will ask you to upload a separate cover letter for each agency chosen, along with a resume.
Your application will not be considered complete until your application, 3 cover letters, and a resume are received. If you have trouble uploading documents within the application form, don't worry. Submit the form and email the documents to Dr. Debbie Tobin.
First review of application materials will begin Monday, February 17, 2020. Notification of placement is expected the middle of March. Good luck!
*NOTE! Internship placement is not guaranteed! The quality of your application materials is important. Advisors are happy to look over your application materials and/or help you prepare for interviews. Contact Kim Frost for assistance.
Alaska Department of Fish and Game
Open: Fisheries Intern
(1-2 Positions available)
15 hours per week. Internship start date: September 1 preferred.
The intern(s) will work as one of the primary counters enumerating coho salmon and steelhead passage through a video weir on the Anchor River. The intern will gain fish identification knowledge, data entry and proofing skills in Microsoft Access and Excel, and will be responsible for producing daily counts and assisting with keeping a weir operational during fall weather. The intern(s) may also have the opportunity to collect water data (temperature and discharge), collect bathymetry measurements, participate in a razor clam abundance survey, prepare salmon scales and razor clam shells for aging in the lab, and arrange field data for reports.
Housing will be provided.
Filled: Wildlife Biology Intern
The Candidate will work 15-20 hours a week assisting biologists collecting data from harvested animals. Each fall hunters bring required samples from harvested animals to Fish and Game offices for sealing and sampling. Staff collects samples for genetic analysis, isotope analysis, antler growth, disease screening, and more. The candidate would work with staff collecting samples, interviewing hunters, inputting data, and more. Additional opportunity exists to help with fisheries projects such as razor clam sampling and salmon monitoring.
The Homer Fish and Game Office is located approximately 1 mile from the Kachemak Bay campus at 3298 Douglas Place just off of Ocean Drive on the way to the Homer Spit. The busiest sampling period is September 1 to September 30 with the majority of sampling occurring Mondays, Tuesdays, and the first working day following a holiday weekend. Housing can be provided at the KBNERR office approximately 1.3 miles from the ADF&G office towards the Homer Spit.
Open: Alaska Maritime National Wildlife Refuge, Islands and Oceans Visitor Center
2 positions available
Environmental Education + Visitor Outreach Internship
Description and duties: serve 20 hours/week presenting K-12 educational and interpretive programs, serving as a greeter at the visitor center and providing information about the area, and contributing to the Refuge’ communication platforms, including newsletter and social media. In addition to these primary duties, the intern will also have the opportunity to create original educational activities, develop educational bulletin boards, assist in bookstore operations, and assist with special events. By the end of the semester, the student will be able to: present interpretive programs, rooted in conservation biology, in an engaging manner and appropriate to the audience; communicate high level of conservation literacy utilizing a variety of media; compose engaging, public facing, conservation education related media content; adapt written and verbal communication appropriately for a variety of target audiences; explain the biological significance of the Refuge’s history and resources, within a local, national, and global context; assist audiences towards high-level concepts including resource protection, stewardship, and global issues.
Free government bunkhouse housing provided upon arrival, roughly August 23rd. Approximately 1 mile from campus. Requires 20 hours/week volunteer internship service.
Housing for CACS interns is available 1 Sept., possibly sooner, at a significantly reduced rate ($1000/semester) for approximately 10-20 hours/week internship service. Located less than ½ mile from campus.
Open: Center for Alaska Coastal Studies & Oregon Coast Aquarium
Environmental Education & Digital Learning (1-2 interns*)
Description and duties: Work 10-20 hours/week in a variety of ecological education capacities. The first phase of the internship will focus on local, place-based education programs with the Center for Alaskan Coastal Studies and the second phase of the internship will focus on development of videos and web-based content for the OceanScape Network of the Oregon Coast Aquarium. All work for OceanScape Network will also be aligned with themes meaningful to CACS and Semester by the Bay. Mentoring and guidance will be provided throughout both phases, and interns will be closely supported by the Oregon Coast Aquarium during the production of web-based content. Basic photo and video equipment will be provided. Internship activities with CACS will include co-leading, assisting with, or developing program activity ideas for science and outdoor learning after school programs for early and upper elementary students. Additional activities may include assisting with marine debris education and school field trips to participate in clean ups and/or assisting with internship, after school, or enrichment programs for high school teens. Some opportunities for assisting with overnight Alaska Coastal Ecology field trips at the semi-remote Peterson Bay Field Station may be available, depending on intern schedule. Exact responsibilities within the internship will be based on the intern's interests, skillsets, and availability and the needs of CACS.
Open: Marine Debris Intern (1-2 interns*)
Description and duties: Work 10-20 hours/week in a variety of contexts associated with marine debris and coastal clean-ups. Activities include assisting outreach and education efforts for youth groups, volunteers, and community groups, as well as potentially assisting with school-base lessons and activities. Interns may assist with marine debris art compilations and there is lots of need for data entry! Intern will also have the opportunity to be involved with leading or assisting marine debris clean ups at semi-remote beach locations in Kachemak Bay. Exact responsibilities within the internship will be based on the intern's interests, skillsets, and availability and the needs of CACS.
Open: Environmental Educator Intern (1-2 interns*)
Description and duties: Work 10-20 hours/week in a variety of environmental ecological education outreach capacities. Internship will include co-leading, assisting with, or developing program activity ideas for science and outdoor learning after school programs for early and upper elementary students. Additional activities may include assisting with marine debris education and school field trips to participate in clean ups and/or assisting with internship, after school, or enrichment programs for high school teens. Some opportunities for assisting with overnight Alaska Coastal Ecology field trips at the semi-remote Peterson Bay Field Station may be available, depending on intern schedule. Exact responsibilities within the internship will be based on the intern's interests, skillsets, and availability and the needs of CACS.
Filled: Marine Mammal Skeletal Articulation Intern (1-2 interns)
Description and duties: Work 10-15 hours/week cleaning and preparing marine mammal bones collected from strandings for use in mounted skeletal displays and classroom education; conduct necropsies, when necessary; restore damaged specimens, including fabrication of missing bones or pieces thereof.
1 position available
Open: Land Steward Intern
Work 15-20 hours/week with the Kachemak Heritage Land Trust (KHLT) Stewardship Staff to help manage over 3400 acres of fish and wildlife habitat in the Kachemak Bay area. The individual’s primary duty will be to draft a management plan for a 64-acre parcel on the Anchor River and organize the files according to national Land Trust Standards and Practices. The position also includes field work where the intern will assist with the annual monitoring of KHLT’s conservation properties and may assist with trail maintenance on KHLT’s trail system. Field work requires the ability to hike over steep and rugged terrain and crossing streams with a 15-20 lb. backpack in all weather conditions. The intern will learn how to use electronic monitoring equipment to document KHLT’s properties; interpret conservation easements and management plans; write monitoring reports; and assist with grant writing.
Pending: Kasitsna Bay Laboratory is located on the south side of Kachemak Bay, with an office in Homer. KBL is part of the National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science of NOAA’s National Ocean Service and is operated in partnership with the Univ. of Alaska Fairbanks
Description and duties: Work 10-15 hr/week assisting NOAA scientists looking at oceanographic changes (data analysis and visualization) and how they relate to recent biological changes in Kachemak Bay/Cook Inlet. Knowledge of Matlab and/or R software helpful, but not required. Opportunity to participate in boat-based field work for oceanographic surveys (day trips or multi-day trip) may exist during the semester. Note: Weekly time commitment varies throughout semester, depending on student schedule with field work opportunities available to additional students, if interested. Free housing potentially provided.
3 positions available
Filled: Cetacean Data/Catalog Entry and Identification Intern
Work 10-15 hr/week assisting area scientists with data cleanup and entry, update annual photo summary spreadsheets; separate resident, transient and offshore killer whale photo data for all years; review and rectify matriline charts; input basic field log and encounter data for current year field work; may require Excel and GIS data entry; sorting and matching of killer whale individuals from Southcentral Alaska into known pods from contributed photos; photographic field work possible, if whales are present in Kachemak Bay; work on other related research and projects as agreed upon by both intern and internship mentor.
Filled: Cetacean Acoustics Intern(s)
Description and duties: Work 10-15 hr/week assisting area scientists with verification of killer whale calls from remote hydrophones in South-central Alaska; learn basics of PAMGUARD and Audacity; learn basic dialect structure for local ‘resident’ killer whale pods; Excel data entry for verification of calls, by pod if known; photographic field work possible, if whales are present in Kachemak Bay; work on other related research and projects as agreed upon by both intern and internship mentor.
2-3 positions available
Filled: Marine Mammal Catalog Intern
Description and duties: Compile marine mammal sightings, details and photographs for Kachemak Bay and Lower Cook Inlet. Survey governmental and nonprofit agencies, as well as greater Homer area businesses (whale watching/natural history tour operators, fishing charters, water taxis, etc.) and local residents, requesting historical information (e.g., Captain’s logbooks) on marine mammal observations (incl. cetaceans, pinnipeds and sea otters). Create a database and, if possible, an app, into which all past and future observations can be recorded. Experience with Excel or Google Sheets and app creation platforms preferred. Photographic field work possible when whales are present in Kachemak Bay. Optional pre-semester summer start date.
Filled: Cetacean Identification Data Entry/Catalog Interns
Description and duties: 1-2 positions available; work 10-20 hours/week learning how to identify and categorize humpback whales into regionally recognized groups; assist area scientist(s) with data entry, sorting, and matching of humpback whale photographs from Southcentral Alaska in restructuring current whale identification catalogs; update and expand postings in Kachemak Bay Whales webpage; work with the Homer community to gather photographs from individuals, charter boat companies, and commercial fisherman to use in updating catalogs and webpages; may require Excel data entry and/or website modification; photographic field work possible when whales are present in Kachemak Bay.
KBNERR, CCS & NOAA
1 position available
Filled: Harmful Species Program Intern
Description and duties: Work 15-20 hours/week with the Harmful Species program. Ideally this individual would have the maturity and responsibility to work independently on tasks. This could include: analyzing survey video and annotating any species of concern, participation in marine invasive species surveys and outreach, taking phytoplankton tows, learning phytoplankton identification and ultimately reading slides using microscopes, and collecting invertebrate samples as needed. Other opportunities may include: field work in the KBNERR boat collecting water quality data, samples or instruments from our stations across the bay, data entry, helping other researchers in our organization with field work in creeks and estuaries, etc.
Internship provides free housing in KBNERR bunkhouse located 2.3 mi. from campus.
2 positions available
Filled: Sea Otter Stranding Response Intern
Description and duties: Conduct stranding response efforts for live and dead stranded sea otters in the Kachemak Bay region on an “on call” basis. Intern is expected to work an average of 20 hours per week. Duties will include responding to stranding calls, conducting beach surveys for stranded sea otters, collecting data (Level A assessments) and biological samples from carcasses, providing assistance in carcass removal and proper disposal (must be able to lift 50+ lbs), assisting in shipping fresh dead otters and other sea otter cases of interest for necropsy, maintaining/inventorying any biological samples or specimens collected or entrusted, maintaining/inventorying field gear, cooperating and maintaining communication with Alaska Sea Life Center (ASLC) volunteers and other Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) volunteers, supporting live otter response and providing live otter observations as needed in coordination with ASLC, participating in public outreach and communication, and managing, organizing, and performing QA/QC on all level A data and sea otter photos.
This position requires the safe operation of and/or riding in FWS vehicles and thus proof of valid driver’s license. Housing available in free government USFWS Alaska Maritime National Wildlife Refuge bunkhouse (requires 20 hours/week commitment) located 1 mi. from campus. However, space is in flux until Oct. 1st. Students need to provide their own housing until this time, or possibly sooner, depending on bunkhouse availability.
Due to the physical demands (heavy lifting, bending, kneeling), outdoor and/or remote work environment, and potential for exposure to zoonoses in this position, the volunteer is expected to follow safety guidelines and use appropriate personal protective gear (gloves, protective clothing, closed-toed shoes, sunscreen, etc.)