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Conservation Education Internship (spring)

This internship has closed. To see open and upcoming opportunities, visit the internships page.

Interested in pursuing a career in education, zoos, biology, conservation, museums or similar? Gain experience and contribute to the mission of saving species with the Smithsonian's National Zoo and Conservation Biology Institute. See what it takes to educate future conservationists and engage audiences around the world as the next conservation education intern with the Zoo’s Center for Learning Innovation. Interns learn alongside education managers and learning programs specialists who provide innovative and engaging opportunities for K-12 students, families, early learners, and general Zoo visitors, while growing skills in informal education development, research, facilitation and evaluation.

Spring 2022: This spring, the Zoo is seeking an intern to assist in the development of a virtual program series celebrating women in science as part of the Smithsonian’s American Women’s History Initiative. The intern will have the unique opportunity to learn from and cross-train with staff and a fellow Smithsonian intern at the Smithsonian Environmental Research Center.

Learning Objectives: 

By the end of the internship, interns will learn and practice how to:

  • Plan, develop and evaluate a three-part virtual program series themed around animal tracking and celebrating women in science
  • Shadow and potentially facilitate live virtual programs alongside learning programs specialists
  • Celebrate, reflect and promote diversity, equity, access and inclusion in informal education
  • Tailor learning experiences to a variety of audiences (spring intern will focus on grades 3-8)
  • Read and write education outcomes and lesson plans
  • Research animals and conservation initiatives
  • Prepare, conduct and analyze evaluations
  • Correspond with scientists about virtual programs
  • Brainstorm innovative project ideas­
  • Work as a team with staff, interns and volunteers, when appropriate
  • Learn about and cross-train with the Smithsonian Environmental Research Center
  • Create collections in the Smithsonian Learning Lab
  • Use design software to edit or create new supplemental education activities and materials
  • Participate in a Teacher Advisory Council meeting (optional)
  • Minimum of two years of study at an accredited college, university or institution
  • Relevant coursework and/or previous internship or job experience
  • Background in education, science, museum studies or similar preferred; others are encouraged to apply and indicate how the position meets their education/career goals
  • Interest and enthusiasm for wildlife conservation and conservation education
  • Interest in creating exciting and engaging content and activities for national audiences
  • Excellent organizational skills
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills
  • Diligence and attention to detail
  • Willingness to take initiative and seek new learning opportunities
  • Work well independently and as a team
  • Flexibility and a good sense of humor
  • Ability to meet deadlines
  • Computer proficiency in Microsoft Office
  • Comfort with virtual meeting platforms (Zoom, Microsoft Teams, Google Meet, etc.)
Thanks to funding from the American Women’s History Initiative, this internship will provide a stipend of $700 per week. Upon acceptance, interns seeking college credit for this internship are responsible for obtaining necessary approvals from their university. Intern will be responsible for all transportation costs and personal health insurance.
Washington DC
Housing in the Washington, D.C. area is not provided and is not required for the spring 2022 term.
The Smithsonian's National Zoo and the Smithsonian Institution do not provide free parking to interns.
Term of appointment: 

The spring conservation education internship is 10 weeks from mid-March to May. 

Internship may be conducted virtually but there is an option for on-site activity at the Zoo and at SERC for those in the Washington, D.C. area.

Application deadline(s): 
Sunday, February 13, 2022
Internship Category: 
How to Apply: 

Please email the following materials to Applications that fail to include all requested items will not be considered. Single attachments with all materials included are preferred. 

  1. A one-page statement of your interest in pursuing this position. Your statement is very important during application evaluations. The statement must include:
    1. Career goals
    2. Why you are interested in this internship, particularly the spring project highlighting women in science
    3. What you hope to gain from the experience 
  2. Resume
  3. Names and contact details of two professional (work or school) references