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Conservation and Land Management Internship Program

2021 CLM internship opportunities are listed below.

To apply, please send the following application materials directly to Chris Woolridge at:

 - Cover letter, resume, contact information for three references


Agency: Rocky Mountain Research Station (USFS)

Location: Boise, ID

Start date range: 4/12 - 4/26/21

Description: Recruiting two (2) Native Seed Interns to conduct field surveys and seed collection throughout the Snake River Basin and Great Basin. Interns will operate out of Boise and work on lands administered by both the Bureau of Land Management and the Forest Service across Idaho, Oregon, Nevada, and Utah. Ongoing projects at the Boise lab are designed to provide land managers and scientists with a better understanding of restoration and adaptation in native forb species. In support of this mission, interns will discover and collect seed from populations of native forbs. 
Interns will assist with additional projects, including annual data collection at remote common garden sites, post-fire restoration monitoring, and other opportunities that may arise. Interns will work 5 days per week with the possibility of one or two long hitches in early to mid-summer. These longer hitches will entail 8 days working, followed by 6 days off. Interns will initially work closely with their mentor, traveling as a group for the first couple weeks. As the season progresses, they will be expected to demonstrate increasing autonomy from the site host, as conditions permit.


Agency: US Forest Service - Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest

Location: Sparks, NV

Start date range: 4/15 - 6/21

Description: Recruiting one Native Seed Intern to conduct field surveys and seed collecting throughout the state of Nevada and parts of Eastern California.
Primary Responsibilities include:
• Scouting and identifying populations of target native plant species suitable for the program;
• Monitoring and maintenance of reciprocal transplant study plots; 
• GPS mapping populations of plants, disturbance areas, and other features;
• Monitoring the phenology of plant populations to identify optimal seed collection times;
• Collecting seed from plant populations and completing data forms in accordance with the Seeds of Success (SOS) Technical Protocol;
• Taking herbarium vouchers, and processing and shipping seed as necessary.
• Recording data electronically and on paper data forms, entering and editing data related to restoration activities;
• Reporting accomplishments and providing recommendations for program improvements, priorities, and future projects. 

Agency: US Fish and Wildlife Service

Location: Klamath Falls, OR

Start date range: 4/26 - 5/10/21

Description: Recruiting two interns to collect biological and physical data related to sensitive species in the upper Klamath River basin. The primary objectives of the interns are to 1) assist with collection and management of data as it pertains to species under the jurisdiction of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service; and 2) gain practical field experience, collection techniques, data management, and data analysis techniques. Interns will complete multiple aquatic and terrestrial duties as assigned, which are described in more detail below. Training will be provided, as necessary, to complete the duties assigned.

Interns will conduct surveys, sampling, and data collection of biological and physical parameters using various techniques for an array of species that may include, but is not limited to: Lost River sucker, shortnose sucker, bull trout, Oregon spotted frog, and Applegate's milk-vetch. Prior knowledge of sampling methods is not required. Rather, interns will acquire skills in fisheries techniques using zooplankton nets, net pens, backpack electrofishing, marking (e.g., passive integrated transponder tags, radio transmitters; fin clips), and fish/plant/amphibian identification. Interns will conduct survey for different life stages of Oregon spotted frog (e.g., egg masses, juveniles, adults) and learn to differentiate species of frogs. Skills will be gained in plant identification and plant survey methodology. Interns may also participate in bald eagle nest monitoring and gain bird identification skills.


Agency: US Forest Service - Ottawa National Forest

Location: Ironwood, MI

Start date range: 5/24 - 6/7/21

Description: The Ottawa National Forest is seeking two invasive plant interns to find and control invasive plants throughout 1 million acres of public land in the western Upper Peninsula of Michigan during the 2021 field season. We’ve identified over 700 acres of priority invasive plants from different terrestrial habitats that we want to remove from the landscape before they cause any more harm to our native flora. Work will include hand pulling, digging, cutting, and herbicide application to several non-native species, including garlic mustard, purple loosestrife, Japanese barberry, exotic honeysuckle, and exotic buckthorns. Interns will be issued and trained to use GPS units, maps, and written details to locate known sites of target species. Interns will keep detailed records of work accomplished and new infestations discovered. The interns may assist with entering infestation data into spreadsheets and ArcMap tables.  

Interns may also assist with other projects/crews, including native plant seed collection, native species planting for site restoration, surveys for rare and protected plant species, and snorkeling and pulling Eurasian watermilfoil. There may be opportunities to cross train with a fisheries or monitoring crew, tour a Forest Service tree nursery, or to complete a small research project if needed for a college course. Interns will receive training in field radio use, bear awareness, defensive driving, and other topics.


The Chicago Botanic Garden stands firmly opposed to systemic and institutional racism. We passionately believe that Black lives matter. We recognize that people of color often feel unwelcome in public spaces, including gardens, forest preserves, and parks. The Chicago Botanic Garden acknowledges that we can do more to address this within our own organization. We recommit ourselves to live our mission and values as we strive to make the Chicago Botanic Garden a welcoming place for everyone.

The Conservation and Land Management (CLM) internship program places early-career scientists in five-month paid internships to assist professional biologists with land management and conservation projects. Since 2001, the CLM program has successfully placed over 1350 interns, providing them with a rich experience from which to launch their professional careers. 


CLM Internship Benefits 
CLM internships are paid internships! ​
 Explore your career goals and expand your resume 
Experience new landscapes, habitats, and species diversity in the beautiful western US
Make connections in various governmental and non-profit organizations
Learn what it's like to work at a federal agency
Apply your education to important conservation projects

Most of our internships are located in the western US, where the majority of public land occurs. Federal partners include the Bureau of Land Management, National Park Service, U.S. D. A. Forest Service, U.S. Geologic Survey, U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service and others. Non-profit partners include the the Mid-Atlantic Regional Seed Bank and the Rae Selling Berry Seed Bank.​

Click here to read more about our internshi​ps!


In accordance with Title IX of the Education Amendments Act of 1972, Chicago Botanic Garden does not discriminate on the basis of sex in its programs or activities, including in employment or admissions. Please call 847-835-8264 to contact our Title IX Coordinator should you have questions or concerns.