If you enjoy being outdoors exploring the world around you, using your mind to solve problems, and strive to do work that is important to society, an internship abroad in ecology might be for you. Students interested in interning abroad in ecology can expect a plethora of opportunities to apply their academic skills to real world settings, in placements related to conservation, restoration, wildlife, and even urban ecology. Whether you are interested in fieldwork, lab research, or naturalist training, you will be sure to find an ecology internship abroad that fits with your goals.
Why Intern Abroad in Ecology
Participating in ecology internships abroad will give you specific insight into the plethora of opportunities for ecology graduates in organizations and companies on a global scale. With a field so deeply rooted in international connections and knowledge of the earth, it is only natural to want to seek out internship opportunities that allow you to expand your knowledge abroad. An ecology internship abroad will surely do just that, allowing students to work in new global fields and habitats, learn crucial skills, such as data collection and analysis, critical thinking, writing, complex problem solving, quality control analysis, and more.
Those who intern abroad in ecology will have a chance to get a feel for the day-to-day work of ecologists, and possibly establish contacts for future jobs abroad. Interns will also become exposed to new and different types of ecological processes, that simply cannot be found in their home countries, such as coral reefs, wildlife game reserves, tropical rainforests, and desert and grassland ecosystems.
Ecology, by nature (pun intended), is a truly global field. But, there are some sites that offer superior opportunities for international internships and work environments for certain aspects of the field. The following are just some of the best locations for ecology internships abroad, including what makes each one of them an appealing opportunity.
South Africa is ideal for students who enjoy hands-on animal training and extensive fieldwork. Interns can spend time working at game reserves in South Africa and experience working side-by-side with animals in a fully immersive environment. After work, interns can take time to get out into the wild South African bush, by going on game drives or walks, studying the local bird species, researching indigenous mammals, or tracking wildlife.
Hawaii. Those with an interest in fisheries and wildlife should intern in the tropical state of Hawaii, where they will be able to work hands-on with researchers studying the ocean and coral reef systems. Due to the numerous ecology internship opportunities in Hawaii, interns will have the opportunity to work in whale sanctuaries, fisher centers, botanical gardens, and forestries, as well as many in many other nature-filled placements.
Ecuador. The cultural and ecological diversity of this Northern Andean country offer students exciting ecology internship opportunities that allow them to apply their academic studies in data collection, GIS and imaging, avian and insect survey techniques, and field research methods, and much more. Those who want to work in diverse ecosystems and gain intensive hands-on experience, rooted in field-research in the tropical rainforest as well as in the Spanish language, will truly enjoy interning in Ecuador. Many interns will find themselves supporting community-based wildlife and habitat conservation efforts. Outside of placement responsibilities, those who intern in Ecuador can enjoy hiking, climbing, and swimming their way through across the country.
Ecology Internships Abroad
Ecology internships will often involve field-research, laboratory research, museum curating, and natural resource management. Regardless of the focus within the discipline, students will need a comprehensive background in the life and natural sciences to intern abroad in ecology successfully. Additionally, an understanding of the physical sciences, including geology, physics, and chemistry, is helpful. Since ecological challenges require collaboration between people and sharing of ideas from fields beyond the natural sciences, it is suggested that students have some familiarity with the social sciences as well, such as economics, geography, and anthropology. Familiarity with statistics, mathematics, and computer design won’t hurt either, as these skills are necessary for most lab work and data analysis.
Your international internship in ecology could find you placed with a variety of organizations and programs. While there are a myriad of possible ecology internship locations, the select few below are prime examples of ecological internships that place emphasises on conservation, restoration, and work on game reserves.
Conservation. Ecology internships focused on conservation will allow interns to help preserve and protect environments and ecological networks around the world, while gaining practical job skills and exploring diverse areas of wilderness and wildlife. Ecological conservation internships are especially ideal for those with a passion for social justice and environmental preservation.
Restoration. Interns who enjoy working outdoors, taking initiative, and collaborating within a larger team may find ecological restoration internships particularly interesting. These internships allow interns to participate and lead field restoration activities while engaging with locals and inspiring community involvement.
Game Reserve. Those with strong backgrounds in biology or animal science can apply their wide array of skills through an ecology internship abroad on a game reserve. Interns will gain exposure to day-to-day management of the game reserve and help conduct ongoing biodiversity and ecological management operations, vegetation monitoring, and alien plant control.
Depending on the location of an ecology internship abroad, there may be specific language requirements to participate. For example, those interested in interning abroad in South or Central America are often required to have advanced to expert level proficiency in Spanish. Interns should be cognizant of this requirement when selecting a location for their ecology internship abroad.
Be a More Competitive Job Candidate. The benefits of ecology internships abroad are limitless. Any international internship will provide participants with invaluable global experience and an opportunity to apply their classroom skills to real world problems. Interns will return home with field training under their belt and experience in GIS and imaging, field research methods, data collection and analysis, and ecological management operations.
Be Outdoors! Let’s face it, one of the reasons why you love ecology so much is because you love nature. What better way to spend time with nature than with an ecology internship abroad that “forces” you to be outside? You be following your dreams and diving headfirst into the field you love all at the same time.
Long Lasting Global Impact. Interning abroad in ecology will allow interns to make real, lasting changes in ecosystems that are constantly threatened and ever-evolving. These changes will have long term effects on both the environment and the community.