Career Discovery Internship Program

Career Discovery Internship Program

Founded in 2008, the Career Discovery Internship Program provides paid summer internships for college students interested in wildlife careers through a partnership with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Positions are available in a variety of fields, including visitor services, education, natural resource management and more.

To participate, applicants must be incoming college sophomores and juniors. Students who are Black, Alaskan Native, American Indian, Asian/Pacific Islander, Hispanic or other racial minority are highly encouraged to apply.

Interns will first attend a week-long orientation held in May and then serve in summer internships tailored to various U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service career tracks for 12 weeks at various sites across the country.

The Student Conservation Association, Inc. is an equal opportunity employer.

Benefits include:

  • Weekly Living Allowance: $620 per week
  • Travel Allowance: $1,000
  • Housing provided by the Student Conservation Association or U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
  • Assigned mentor from U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
  • Hands-On Experience
  • Expenses paid orientation in May

The ideal candidate is:

  • Incoming college sophomore and juniors
  • Available for a 12-13 week summer internship beginning in May
  • Open-minded and has an adventurous spirit
  • Not necessarily experienced in conservation
  • A licensed driver
  • Able to provide references with an application

​Download the CDIP Flyer (PDF) for more information or to spread the word.

How to Apply:

1. Complete an Internship/Corps Application online at

2. Use the following links to apply for specific positions:

– Wildlife Biology Interns PO-00734753 

In these roles, interns work with wildlife biologists and help with daily duties, including habitat restoration, invasive plant species inventory and removal and some animal monitoring. These positions generally involve full days in the field, hiking with equipment. Interns are considered a part of the team at a wildlife refuge. As part of that team, you will observe and be part of what it’s like on a refuge. All positions will involve some work outside of the duties of a biology intern depending on the need and urgency of that need.

– Visitor Services & Site Operations Interns PO-00734754 

In these roles, interns perform various duties, including interpreting the wildlife refuge to visitors, staffing the visitor center and working with volunteers at the site. Interns will generally assist with any and all operational needs that may come up at the site. All positions will involve some work outside of the duties of a Visitor Services Intern as assigned based on need.

– Facilities/Maintenance Interns PO-00734755 

In these roles, interns primarily focus on trail repair and maintenance. There is some light construction, structure repair (bridges, boardwalks) and campground maintenance. Interns may also assist with any larger-scale projects happening at a wildlife refuge during your time at the site. All positions will involve some work outside of the duties of a facilities/maintenance intern depending on the need and urgency of that need.

3. Contact HR Recruiting Coordinator Jamila Jackson at [email protected] or (703) 952-1684 with any questions


  • Interested candidates are encouraged to apply as soon as possible.
  • Application review will begin in February and continue until all positions are filled.
Student Conservation Association
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