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Wetlands Restoration Internship - Summer 2023

Internship: Wetland Restoration
Season: Summer 2023 (Approx June-Aug)
Location: Onsite and in the field
Application Deadline: Friday March 31 at 5pm CST
Internship Overview: 
Invasive plants can dramatically alter wetlands and negatively affect the species that rely on these sensitive habitats. Shedd Aquarium is working with community volunteers to remove invasive vegetation – primarily buckthorn - from around wetlands in the Forest Preserves of Cook County. This restoration work falls under Shedd’s Conservation Priority Area to Revitalize Habitat. 

As part of the Conservation Research Department, the intern will work closely with the Amphibian Biologist to document the wildlife that use these habitats and monitor species abundances in response to restoration efforts; special focus is given to amphibians and aquatic invertebrates. These efforts will help us understand how removing invasive buckthorn from temporary wetlands can benefit aquatic animals. This research also will help inform management strategies to best protect wetlands. 
Learning Objectives: 
  • Gain skill in data collection for field and laboratory ecological research 
  • Demonstrate understanding of how to conduct scientific research: study design, data collection and analysis, and presentation of results 
  • Develop and strengthen presentation and public speaking skills 
  • Gain working knowledge of restoration and wetland ecology in Chicago 
Responsibilities & Projects: 
  • Demonstrate commitment to Shedd’s vision, mission and values 
  • Assist with field work and laboratory work for invertebrate and amphibian research 
  • Field work will include surveys for amphibian larvae, aquatic macroinvertebrates, and other habitat variables June-August. 
  • Laboratory work will include use of a dissecting microscope to sort, identify, and count macroinvertebrates samples 
  • Present research findings to the Shedd community at the end of the project 
  • Data entry and other office work 
  • Other projects as assigned 

Fields of Interest: 
  • Conservation Biology 
  • Wildlife Biology 
  • Self-motivated and enthusiastic to work hard 
  • Good organizational, written, and oral communication skills 
  • Capable of working independently and as part of a team 
  • Willingness/desire to learn about freshwater conservation research 
  • Able to work in unfavorable outdoor conditions (e.g., mosquitoes, rain, cold, heat and humidity, muddy ground, uneven terrain). 
  • Able to obtain transport to/from Shedd and/or field sites around Cook County 
  • Have a high school diploma or GED. 
Time & Compensation: 
  • This is a non-exempt, temporary position that pays $15.40 per hour
  • We anticipate this position will be scheduled for 24 hours per week for 11 weeks, pending business needs and individual performance.
  • Preferred schedule: Any weekdays, Monday-Friday; 9am-4pm; occasionally longer workdays may be required to complete field sampling. 
  • Set schedule based on intern availability. 
We welcome applications from all levels of experience, including those seeking career exploration or changes, gap year students, freshmen, sophomores, and those seeking first internships. 
We strongly encourage people of color, LGBTQ+ community, Veterans and active duty military, parents, individuals with disabilities, and individuals from all cultural backgrounds to apply. Shedd Aquarium is an equal opportunity employer and welcomes everyone to our team. 
If you need a reasonable accommodation at any point in the application or interview process, please let us know. In your application, please feel free to select which pronouns you use (For example – she/her/hers, he/him/his, they/them/theirs).