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Internships

2017 Summer Internship Program, Portland, Maine

The Gulf of Maine Research Institute (GMRI) catalyzes solutions to the complex challenges of ocean stewardship and economic growth in the Gulf of Maine bioregion. Our dynamic fusion of science, education, and community gives us range to effect change from multiple directions, while our objectivity and commitment to collaboration make us the go-to organization for marine communities grappling with contentious issues, management transitions, and new business systems.

GMRI has established a formal, competitive summer internship program for graduates and undergraduates to support our staff on a portfolio of projects focused on fishery ecosystem research, community, and education programs. Internships at GMRI provide an opportunity to gain valuable work experiences at sea and in our lab.

GMRI is seeking interns for the summer of 2017. These are 10-week internships that usually run from early-June through mid-August. GMRI has a strong partnership with the University of Maine, School of Marine Sciences, and some of these positions may be supported and advised by University of Maine personnel based at GMRI.

Internships at GMRI are paid, and most, but not all, intern opportunities have funding at this time. Interested students are encouraged to seek fellowships and/or funding options directly through their university or college. GMRI is committed to assist candidates to identify funding sources to support their internship.

GMRI believes that a work environment is enhanced when diverse groups of people come together with diverse ideas. We strongly encourage applications from groups underrepresented in the marine science and policy fields, including minority candidates and first generation college students.

The Cooperative Institute for the North Atlantic Region (CINAR) is pleased to announce an opportunity for Undergraduate Fellowships for Minorities. Positions at GMRI concur with the approved CINAR project categories. For more information about CINAR and this opportunity visit their website at:  http://www.cinar.org/.

 

The GMRI 2017 Summer Internship Program positions are noted below. 

To apply for any of these summer intern positions, please CLICK HERENote that you will be navigating away from the GMRI website to complete your application.

The application deadline is February 3, 2017. Applications received after that date will be reviewed only if internship positions have not already been filled. GMRI will begin reviewing applications in February. Questions should be emailed to jobs@gmri.org. However, we will not accept resumes sent to this address.

 


Casco Bay Aquatic System Survey (CBASS)

GMRI is seeking candidates to fill four intern positions for the summer of 2017 in the area of marine and fisheries ecology under the supervision of the Demersal Fisheries Ecologist. GMRI scientists are conducting a long-term sentinel monitoring program to monitor ecological conditions in Casco Bay and surrounding areas (including the Presumpscot River and up to 3 miles offshore). This ecosystem monitoring “corridor” will be instrumental in helping to keep track of long-term trends in a variety of ecological indicators including temperature, water quality, fish and invertebrate community composition, trophic interactions and fish health as these may respond to changes in land use practices and climate change.

 The summer interns will assume the following tasks with the assistance and supervision of GMRI research scientists and associates:

  • Water quality monitoring (temperature, dissolved oxygen, pH, secchi depth)
  • Fish and invertebrate trapping
  • Fish seining and angling
  • Setting up video systems to monitor fish in situ and analyzing video footage
  • Fish diet analysis and ageing (using otoliths and image analysis software)
  • Plankton and fish egg/larvae analysis (from plankton nets)
  • Data entry and some analysis
  • Develop and populate databases and implement data quality assurance protocols*
  • Communicate and share results with GMRI staff

Qualifications include:  Enrollment in a Bachelor’s degree program (or recently graduated) in a scientific field related to marine research, with strong quantitative and computer skills; detail oriented, self-starter with strong organizational and writing skills; proven ability to work well independently and in teams. Familiarity with fish and invertebrate sampling techniques and fish ageing is preferred.

Requirements: 

  • Data entry skills, including ability to use Microsoft Excel software
  • Basic skills in statistical analysis
  • Comfortable on boats and outside in sometimes inclement conditions

 


Snap-a-Striper: Harnessing the observational power of recreational anglers for stewardship of Maine’s striped bass resource and fishery

Striped bass is an important component of the recreational fishery in coastal Maine. Unfortunately, recreational catches have declined in recent years without a clear understanding of the contributing factors. Understanding the origin and life history of fish caught in the fishery will provide insight into the reason for declining catches and what management actions would be effective in reversing this trend. The results of this study will inform local stewardship efforts of the only native population of striped bass in Maine and sustainable management of a fishery that contributes significantly to recreation and tourism in the state.

The Summer Intern will assist with the collection and analysis of striped bass data collected through the Snap-a-Striper program. Snap-A-Striper is a data collection program that is a collaboration between researchers at the Gulf of Maine Research Institute, the Coastal Conservation Association of Maine and local anglers. The program is aimed at collecting photos and the inner ear bones from striped bass throughout the fishing season. We will use this data to determine the origin (local vs. migrant) of our fish, information that can improve management of the striped bass resource.  Further responsibilities will include data entry, statistical analysis of data, and synthesis of a report.

Qualifications:

  • Enrollment in an undergraduate or graduate degree program (or recently graduated) in a scientific field related to marine research.
  • Detail oriented self-starter with an ability to synthesize data and information, strong organizational and writing skills, and a proven ability to work well independently and in teams.
  • Strong quantitative and computer skills, including basic coursework in statistics and familiarity with a programming environment such as R, will be advantageous.
  • Experience preparing scientific reports and presentations.
  • Knowledge of or experience in outreach with the recreational fishing sector is preferred.

 


Time Series Analysis of Ichthyoplankton in the Gulf of Maine Coastal Zone

 Ichthyoplankton are planktonic eggs and larvae of fish, typically released during seasonal broadcast spawning events and dispersed by currents throughout the Gulf of Maine. Orders of magnitude smaller and unable to swim against the currents, larval fish have a substantially different ecology than adults and yet events during this phase may be vitally important to recruitment and health of fish stocks.

Rapid warming in the Gulf of Maine has the potential to impact fish populations through its effects on larval ecology, which may take the form of physiological stress, mismatch of spawning and spring bloom events, and changes in dispersal patterns. The biological oceanography lab has been maintaining a time series since 2008 with regular collection of ichthyoplankton samples.

Along with assisting in weekly monitoring cruises, the summer intern will process samples from past years: identifying and sorting out ichthyoplankton, imaging them, and taking morphological measurements. In addition to the laboratory and field work the intern will analyze the ichthyoplankton data to identify seasonal patterns and long term trends.

Qualifications include: Enrollment in a Bachelor’s degree program (or recently graduated) in a scientific field related to marine research, with strong quantitative and computer skills; detail oriented, self-starter with strong organizational and writing skills; proven ability to work well independently and in teams; familiarity with microscopy and oceanographic sampling preferred.

Requirements: 

  • Strong data management skills, with familiarity in Excel
  • Understanding of statistical analysis
  • Comfortable on boats and outside in sometimes inclement conditions

 


Forecasting seasonal changes in the Gulf of Maine

The average temperature of the Gulf of Maine has increased rapidly.  Along with the temperature changes have come changes in the seasonality in both the physical environment and in the distribution, abundance, and migration patterns of species in the region.  We are broadly interested in characterizing how seasonality of the Gulf of Maine has changed and how this has impacted important commercial species.  

For this project, we are seeking a highly capable intern to assist in the development of seasonal forecast products.  The primary task would be to evaluate potential refinements in our annual lobster forecasts (see http://www.gmri.org/lobster-forecast), but we are also looking to explore other forecasting opportunities. This intern will be based in the Ecosystem Modeling Lab.

Qualifications include: Enrollment in an undergraduate or graduate degree program (or recently graduated) in a scientific field with strong quantitative and computer skills.  Strong technical skills, including familiarity with a programming environment such as R or Matlab and training in mathematical modeling and/or statistics.  Detail oriented self-starter with strong organizational skills and a proven ability to work well independently and in teams.  

 


Lobster Discard Reduction in the Gulf of Maine

In collaboration with a commercial lobster fisherman, GMRI is testing the ability of a modified lobster trap to allow the escape of groundfish while retaining legal-sized lobsters. This is a preemptive move from groundfish fishermen fueled by concern about the mortality of cod in lobster traps - due to the spawning stock biomass of cod being only 4% of the maximum sustainable yield and the Annual Catch Limit in the Gulf of Maine now at a mere 200mt. Presently, there is little evidence documenting the magnitude and frequency of cod capture in lobster traps or their mortality rate.

This project will collect video from a deep water/low light camera system to control experimental lobster traps. The main focus is to gain insight into the behavior of lobster, cod, and cusk interacting with a lobster trap.

The intern will view all video from 30 trips to categorize lobster and groundfish behavior during each step of the capture process (trap approach, entry into the kitchen, entry into the parlor, retention during hauling), and produce a 10-minute documentary style summary video with audio for upload online.

Qualifications:

  • Enrollment in an undergraduate or graduate degree program (or recently graduated) in a scientific field related to marine research.
  • Interest or experience with underwater technology, especially underwater video.
  • Experience with video editing software is preferred.
  • Knowledge of or interest of lobster and fish behavior to fishing gear.

 


MREP Program Impact Assessment (Survey) & Communications

GMRI is seeking intern candidate to fill one (1) position for the summer of 2017 to support the development and implementation of a social science survey of fishermen operating in the Federal waters of the Southeast fisheries region, and analyze and document results in the form of a report for further dissemination. GMRI scientists and Community Outreach team are conducting a survey to assess the impact of the Marine Resource Education Program in the Gulf of Mexico in particular, and understand how program participants alter their behavior, attitudes and engagement with and towards fisheries conservation and resource extraction regulations.

The successful candidate will provide hands-on support in the preparation of survey data, analysis of these data and extract important findings. The successful candidate will be asked to prepare a written summary and background of the survey, and may be asked to collect additional data from fishermen and others, via phone. The candidate will also support program communications overhaul, including website, in support of early findings from the survey.

The summer intern will assume the following tasks with the assistance and supervision of GMRI research scientists and associates:

  • Data entry and some additional data collection
  • Online research and literature review
  • Summarize survey questionnaire responses and statistically analyze findings
  • Prepare summary report and develop draft of written materials for publication
  • Communicate and share results with GMRI staff and program partners and collaborators
  • Participate in program communications resources redesign in support of survey findings

Qualifications include: Enrollment in a Bachelor’s or Master’s degree program (or recently graduated) in a scientific field related to marine research, resource economics, environmental studies, or other social science, with strong computer skills; detail oriented, self-starter with strong organizational and writing skills; proven ability to work well independently and in teams; familiarity with Federal fisheries science or management & regulation is a plus, and ability to communicate with fisheries stakeholders is highly desirable.

Requirements:

  • Creative researcher, willing to search internet and scientific literature databases.
  • Comfortable on the phone, able to engage in casual dialog around fishing practices.
  • Strong writing & listening skills.
  • Data entry skills, including ability to use Microsoft Excel software.
  • Mathematical abilities, basic skills in statistical analysis and tools.
  • Creative communications a plus, some experience with editing, layout and graphics.

 


Pelagic Fisheries (Bluefin Tuna)

Atlantic bluefin tuna are a large highly migratory species distributed throughout most of the north Atlantic basin.  They are seasonal visitors to the Gulf of Maine using this region to accumulate critical energy reserves utilized for subsequent migration and reproductive needs.  Despite decades of study, critical life history information is lacking including age and stock structure, migratory patterns, age at maturity and energetics.  The University of Maine and the Gulf of Maine Research Institute are collaborating on a long-term biological sampling program of Atlantic bluefin tuna to address some of these life history deficiencies and provide information to better inform the assessment and management community. 

The summer intern will assist with data collection efforts which include engaging with commercial and recreational tuna vessels to collect biological samples. Interns will collect samples (tuna heads) from vessels around the Portland area, including two tuna tournaments in the beginning of August.  Sample processing will include extracting otoliths, cleaning, weighing, sectioning and digitizing them for assessment of age and population structure.  Muscle tissue will be removed and analyzed for lipid and energetic content as a metric to assess foraging success.  Additional duties include data entry and basic statistical analysis. The intern will be expected to synthesize the project material and present a portion of their work at the conclusion of the internship program.           

Qualifications include:  Enrollment in a Bachelor’s (or graduate) degree program (or recently graduated) in a scientific field related to marine research, with basic quantitative and computer skills; detail oriented, self-starter with strong organizational and writing skills; proven ability to work well independently and in teams.

Requirements: 

  • Data entry skills, including ability to use Microsoft Excel software
  • Familiarity with the use of dissecting scopes and image processing preferably Adobe Photoshop
  • Basic skills in statistical analysis
  • The ability to lift up to 75 pounds
  • Ability to work in field or laboratory setting conducting fish dissections

  


Sustainable Seafood Program: Marine Science and Policy

The Gulf of Maine Research Institute’s sustainable seafood program  manages a regional brand called Gulf of Maine Responsibly Harvested®. The goal of the brand program is to empower consumers to access regional, responsibly harvested seafood where they normally eat and shop, whether that be in the grocery store, at a college dining hall, or in an elementary school cafeteria. Retailers, colleges and schools that participate in the brand program also work to educate their communities about fisheries and seafood from the Gulf of Maine, as well as the economic impact their purchasing practices have on coastal communities. 

The brand differentiates seafood that is traceable to the Gulf of Maine region and highlights fish stocks that have been verified as meeting five important criteria around responsible harvest. To verify a stock’s credibility, GMRI develops assessment reports that are reviewed by our researchers, who then determine whether the stock meets the criteria.

GMRI is seeking an intern this summer to research and draft verification reports for various Gulf of Maine species. Applicants should have an academic focus in the marine science and policy field, with a foundational understanding of the stock assessment process, particularly for groundfish, as well as a strong understanding of fisheries management in New England. This intern will be responsible for independently researching and writing draft verification reports assessing different species against the five major criteria of the Gulf of Maine Responsibly Harvested program, with supervision and guidance from GMRI’s seafood team.


 

 

For all of our summer intern positions, successful candidates will have additional skills and attributes that are core to our organization:

  • Passion to learn combined with a strong desire to protect marine resources
  • Desire to support the viability of the fishing industry and community
  • Eagerness to learn about the Gulf of Maine ecosystem
  • Interest to work independently and collaboratively
  • Flexibility and willingness to work where needed during the internship experience
  • Excellent problem-solving skills and strong attention to detail
  • Solid research and analytical skills
  • Desire to have a challenging experience
  • Applicants must have a track record of student success and potential as demonstrated by GPA, research portfolio, prior work experiences and/or the recommendation of a professor. 

GMRI is proud to confirm its long-standing policy and commitment to providing equal access and equal employment opportunities in all terms, conditions, processes and benefits of employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, age, disability, genetic information, or veteran status. Our employment decisions are made without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, age, disability, genetic information, or veteran status.

Applicants and employees are encouraged to voluntarily self-identify their race/ethnicity, gender, disability status and veteran status to assist us in fulfilling various data reporting requirements of the federal government. This self-identification is completely voluntary, will be kept strictly confidential and separate from your application data, and used only to meet federal reporting requirements. Providing or declining to provide this information will not result in adverse action of any kind.

 

To apply for any of these summer intern positions, please CLICK HERE. Note that you will be navigating away from the GMRI website to complete your application.

The application deadline is February 3, 2017. Applications received after that date will be reviewed only if internship positions have not already been filled. GMRI will begin reviewing applications in February. Questions should be emailed to jobs@gmri.org. However, we will not accept resumes sent to this address.