When should I start looking for an internship?

NOW! Finding an internship is very similar to finding a job and requires planning and preparation. You will gain internship-searching skills and get materials ready in FW 209 Career Skills in Fisheries and Wildlife Sciences, but the following resources are available to assist you at any time:

• Become familiar with employers in the field of fisheries, wildlife, and conservation sciences -- see our list of common Job Boards in the fields of fisheries, wildlife, and conservation sciences
• Find where to look for seasonal, part-time and volunteer positions -- if you're current student, check your inbox for the Weekly Opportunity List emails!
• Update and improve your resume and cover letter
• Steps to get academic credit for your efforts

Remember, many employers interview six months in advance of filling positions so spending time now to prepare is a good investment.

Steps to Get Credit

1. Start the search now. If you're a current student, check your email inbox for the Weekly Opportunity List emails -- here, the FWCS Internship Coordinator compiles job and internship postings from 8 major FWCS job boards (learn about additional job boards here), to highlight opportunities most relevant to FWCS students and alumni. Research local organizations that interest you, such as land management agencies (ex. state parks, National Forests), NGOs (ex. watershed councils, restoration groups, wildlife rehabilitation centers), and wildlife or fisheries agencies (ex. Oregon Department of Fisheries and Wildlife). Compile a list of 10+ such employers and note if they have a job board, or information on internship or seasonal positions on their websites -- if so, make notes on your calendar when to apply and/or check back; if not, note contact information for supervisors you can reach out to to discuss the possibility of interning with their organization.

2. Use these resources to update and improve your resume and cover letter

3. Apply for internship/job positions. If offered an internship/job, email the Internship Coordinator to submit its approval for credit. In your email, provide the name of the organization, a link to the organization’s website, a position description, the duration of the position, the date at which you will meet the total hours required, and a description of how it will advance you towards your career goals. If it is a low-paying or unpaid internship, or if you are traveling to present research at a conference, read the Funding section below.

4. Complete the appropriate training agreement form (below). The internship coordinator must review your training agreement before registering for FW410. After it is approved, send it to your internship/job supervisor for their signature and either return it to the internship coordinator or submit it in Canvas before starting your internship.

Exploratory Internship Agreement Form

Intensive Internship Agreement Form

Professional Conference Agreement Form

5. Register for FW 410 in the quarter that you will complete the total required hours for your internship. FW 410 is split into two courses: FW 410 Exploratory Internship for one credit (involving 40 hours of experience) and FW 410 Intensive Internship for three credits (involving 200 hours of experience). International experiences follow a different process; contact the internship coordinator for detailed information.

6. Once registered, review the canvas site. Review the syllabus before starting your internship and complete all assignments by their due dates. Review the evaluation form to see what criteria you will be evaluated on by your internship supervisor at the end of your internship. 

Funding Details

Financial assistance is available to students participating in low-paying or volunteer internships. Applications with a list of selection criteria for the E.R. Jackman Internship Support award are accepted three times a year. Applications for the Department of Fisheries and Wildlife Internship Awards are accepted at any time. For more information or to apply, download this fillable form Travel and Internship Support Application and submit. For internship funding questions, please contact Internship Coordinator.

Develop Tools and Skills

Internships & Professional Societies

Want to attend a professional conference? 

These Excel spreadsheets direct you to professional conferences offered by state and national fish and wildlife organizations. You can sort the data within each spreadsheet by conference name, location, date, or field to help narrow down which conference is the best fit. It's possible to get credit for attending a conference by filling out the Professional Conference Agreement Form and submitting it to the internship coordinator for approval before registering for the conference. 

Conferences in 2021

Find more information about earning 1 Credit toward your FW 410 exploratory internship requirement here

Wondering which professional organization you should join? 

Joining a professional society or association is an essential component of building professional relationships for your career development. There are associations for nearly every area of interest in our profession and many have national, state and regional chapters.

Associations sponsor numerous events throughout the year allowing you to connect with professionals and peers. Since most associations have national or local conferences, you have the opportunity to learn about current trends, issues and advances from key leaders. You may even find a local mentor to help you with your professional development.

Most associations provide access to journals, magazines, and newsletters as a part of your membership privileges. Additionally, associations offer scholarships and awards for students. And, listing your association membership on your resume is impressive to employers as it shows you're dedicated to staying connected with others in your profession.

So, whether you are looking to learn about job postings in your field, network in your professional community, gain access to current events in your specialization area, or just have some fun while meeting new people, joining a professional society is the first step!

Links to Professional Societies 

Internship Coordinator

Internship Coordinator Nash 104 E, 541-737-1091