Internships

Do you want to help our ocean, coastline, marine life, and community?

Orange County Coastkeeper offers a wide selection of volunteer and internship opportunities throughout the year. Activities can range from coordinating a beach cleanup and collecting water quality samples, to community outreach and film production.

A Coastkeeper intern will gain experience that will further your education or career search and provide a high profile reference for resumes and job applications. As such, the expectations and responsibilities for interns are similar to those found in a standard job setting.

The minimum commitment for an official internship is 100 hours. All positions are unpaid, and we encourage student applicants to receive school credit for their hours.

Keep a lookout on this page or join our mailing list to hear about upcoming volunteer opportunities, or how to become an intern.

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Environmental Advocacy and Research Internship

Much of our work relies on strong research skills to support our advocacy efforts. As an advocacy and research intern, you may focus on a specific project that is timely and piques your interest, or you could delve into a variety of tasks throughout your time with us. You might work in areas such as scientific research, campaigns, event planning, MPA Watch and maintaining the Coastkeeper Garden.

Responsibilities

Work on a variety of projects that include field work, research, report writing, data entry, attending public meetings, writing letters and working with the public.

Qualifications

Must have your own transportation, be willing and able to work outdoors in a variety of locations, have good communications and writing skills, ability to work as part of a team.

Orange County Coastkeeper accepts applications year round. To be considered for a 100-hour, unpaid intern position, please fill out this application and send it along with your resume to Ray Hiemstra at [email protected]

Environmental Education Internship

This internship gives students interested in teaching environmental education real experience working with K-12 students. Interns will assist Coastkeeper’s education team with in-class presentations, preparing teaching materials and field trips where you teach students about their local watershed, how to test water quality, etc.

Responsibilities

  • Assist with staffing/hosting educational booths at fairs, conferences, and other outreach events
  • Assist with the development, implementation, and presentation of hands-on lessons for schools and outreach events (field trips, in-class lessons, career fairs, etc.)
  • Support marketing and promotional efforts for the WHALES and Kids Ocean Day programs through social media, press releases, and the Coastkeeper education program websites (blog posts, social media stories, etc.)
  • Assist with logistical duties such as maintaining inventory of supplies, calibrating water quality meters, scanning documents, grading worksheets etc.

Qualifications

Applicants must be enrolled in college and in the process of obtaining a degree. Degree is not limited to science/education. Applicants with experience working with students, excellent oral and written communication skills, highly developed organizational skills, and a demonstrated ability to engage students and teachers alike will be given priority.

Candidate must be hard working, motivated, and most importantly, demonstrate a deep commitment and passion for environmental protection and education. Prior to applying for this position, the applicant should familiarize themselves with the WHALES and Kids Ocean Day programs by visiting the program pages.

###Schedule

~10 hours per week. Preference will be given to candidates with availability between the hours of 7:30am-2:00pm for EITHER Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday. Remaining hours are flexible.

Orange County Coastkeeper accepts applications year round. To be considered for a 100-hour, unpaid intern position, please fill out this application and send it along with your resume to Dyana Peña at [email protected]

Marine Restoration Internship

This internship program is geared towards students interested in marine research and habitat restoration. Major restoration events take place during the summer each year, but ongoing scientific surveys, planning and outreach tasks occur year-round.

Interns will learn about the complete process of habitat restoration from start to finish, including grant writing, fundraising, permitting, monitoring, and restoration. Current Coastkeeper restoration projects are focused on native eelgrass and oysters.

Responsibilities

  • Review and summarize relevant scientific literature
  • Assist with scientific monitoring in the field
  • Enter, organize and analyze data
  • Assist with data interpretation and production of summary reports
  • Attend and assist with restoration events in Newport Bay
  • Develop and improve outreach materials for the restoration program
  • Solicit volunteer help for restoration events and coordinate volunteer participation
  • Research potential grants and assist in developing grant applications
  • Generate a monthly blog post featuring your work with Coastkeeper
  • Provide support to other Coastkeeper projects, as well as general office assistance

Required Qualifications

  • Hard working, self-motivated and passionate about marine habitat restoration and conservation
  • Ability to multi-task, work independently and as part of a team
  • Strong oral and written communication skills
  • Comfortable working long hours outside and near the water
  • Proficient in Microsoft programs, including Word, PowerPoint, and Excel
  • Reliable transportation to office and field sites

Completed or working towards a college degree. Highest priority will be given to those who must complete an internship for college credit, or have an equally decisive way of verifying a deep commitment to the success of their Coastkeeper internship

Preferred Qualifications

  • Current AAUS certified Scientific Diver
  • Geographic Information Systems experience
  • Grant and scientific writing experience

Schedule

8 – 16 hours a week, including occasional weekends. Can be flexible around work and school schedules, but applicants must commit to at least two days a week in the office, as well as the vast majority of restoration events.

The Restoration program accepts applications for spring and summer internships. To be considered for a 100-hour, unpaid intern position, please submit a resume and brief cover letter to Katie Nichols at [email protected]

Legal & Policy Application

Include google form for application sign up

Environmental Public Relations Internship

Are you a writer, designer or creative mind with a love for people and the environment? If so, this is the internship for you.

The program provides the opportunity to develop passions while making an impact on local communities. Through community-based environmental stewardship and conservation, the program aims to unite Orange County residents in the name of clean coastal areas.

Responsibilities

  • Draft press releases and media alerts
  • Create content for social media
  • Schedule and post content on social media
  • Contact and engage with local businesses and organizations
  • Create marketing materials such as fliers and e-blasts
  • Design images for online content
  • Attend and assist at monthly cleanups
  • Take photos at events

Qualifications

Applicants should have experience with creating marketing and communications projects and an interest in environmental awareness campaigns. Candidates must have excellent oral and written communication skills, highly developed organizational skills and a demonstrated ability to manage projects. He or she must be hard working, self-motivated and must demonstrate a deep commitment and passion for environmental protection.

  • Strong writing and verbal communication skills
  • Writing experience using AP Style
  • Attention to detail
  • Confidence in public speaking
  • Creative mindset
  • Ability to work independently
  • Preferred digital design experience with photoshop, canva, etc.

Orange County Coastkeeper accepts applications year round. To be considered for a 100-hour, unpaid intern position, please fill out this application and send it along with your resume to Lauren Smith at [email protected]

Volunteer and Communications Internship

The Cleanup OC program is looking for a well organized and creative intern that is interested in community outreach and event programming. Cleanup OC is Orange County Coastkeeper’s community cleanup program that strives to improve the quality of life and the environment throughout the Orange. Cleanup OC provides an opportunity for the community to give back and protect their home.

Coastkeeper holds monthly beach cleanups and co-coordinates the annual OC Coastal Cleanup Day. At these public events, community members take initiative and spend time outdoors with friends, family, and neighbors to make their home a better place.

Responsibilities

  • Help coordinate all aspects of the expansion of the Cleanup OC programs. This includes event planning, community outreach, coordinating volunteers.
  • Attend and help facilitate beach cleanups.
  • Design online content to promote events.
  • Work with public relations team to schedule and post social media content.
  • Aid in recruitment of volunteers for events

Qualifications

Applicants should have experience with event planning, community outreach, communications and an interest in environmental stewardship. Candidates must have excellent oral and written communication skills, highly developed organizational skills and a demonstrated ability to manage projects. He or she must be hard working, self-motivated and must demonstrate a commitment and passion for environmental protection.

  • Experience in event planning and coordinating volunteers
  • Strong writing and verbal communication skills
  • Confidence in public speaking
  • Creative mindset
  • Ability to work independently

Orange County Coastkeeper accepts applications year round. To be considered for a 100-hour, unpaid intern position, please fill out this application and send it along with your resume to Lauren Smith at [email protected]