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Resilient Landscapes Program Intern

The San Francisco Estuary Institute provides independent science to assess and improve the health of the waters, wetlands, wildlife and landscapes of San Francisco Bay, the California Delta and beyond. SFEI’s Resilient Landscapes Program develops innovative ecosystem restoration and management strategies to re-establish and sustain key ecological functions and services. Areas of research focus within our program include historical ecology, integrative geomorphology, landscape ecology, wetland science, and cultural landscapes.

Interns at SFEI may be involved in a number of different projects. These include 1) historical ecology projects focused on collecting, compiling, and synthesizing archival data to reconstruct the physical and ecological characteristics of past landscapes in various regions throughout California (for example, in the Petaluma River watershed and on the San Francisco Peninsula); 2) efforts to assess contemporary sediment dynamics, hydrogeomorphic functioning, and potential climate change impacts around the San Francisco Bay Area; and 3) “visioning” projects to develop management and restoration strategies to enhance ecological resilience at the landscape scale (for example, in Santa Clara Valley and the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta). Interns will work closely with the supervisor to arrange to contribute to multiple projects within SFEI or to focus more intensively on 1-2 primary projects.


Internship Tasks

  • Make field trips to archives and conduct internet-based research to collect data on the historical conditions of California watersheds
  • Interpret historical data to produce integrated maps of historical watershed characteristics
  • Synthesize historical and contemporary data on land use and species distribution
  • Use GIS or other geospatial tools to map and analyze landscape characteristics using landscape ecology metrics
  • Conduct literature reviews on relevant environmental topics
  • Write and edit sections of technical reports
  • Develop visualizations and graphics to convey information for scientists and stakeholders

Necessary Qualifications

  • Some background in an environmental science field (e.g., earth systems, geology, biology, ecology, environmental engineering, etc.)
  • Experience conducting independent research
  • Strong verbal and written communication skills
  • Ability to work both independently and with a close-knit team
  • Self-direction and ability to manage tasks with minimal supervision

Desired Skills

Experience with archival research; experience using GIS to create maps and/or analyze geospatial data; data analysis skills and experience using analytical software tools such as Excel and R; design or data visualization skills and experience using graphic design tools such as Adobe Illustrator

Tuesday, February 7, 2017
Richmond, CA
Preferred Majors or Experience: 
Juniors and seniors are preferred, qualified freshman and sophomores considered. Those majoring in Earth Systems, Geological Sciences, Biology, or Environmental Systems Engineering will be well suited to this position.