Summer is fast approaching and there are lots of opportunities out there for environmental science students of all kinds to get a little bit of experience in their chosen field in a more laid-back atmosphere than your regular internships. There are a couple internships posted in the National Forest/Wildlife Refuge/Parks in Florida for the summer that might include housing and a little money to help you get through. Those are, generally, heavily competed for but there is an alternative you might want to consider.
All across the state of Florida are State Parks, Forests, Water Management Districts as well as National Parks and Forests that have many volunteer workamping opportunities that you could possibly use for extra credit in school and you most definitely can use the experience on your resume. All you need is enough money for food, gas and a self-contained camper of some kind. You then fill out an online application and list the region of the state or your top 3 favorite Florida State parks to volunteer during the summer months. Even as a campground host in one of these parks you will learn about the environment, plants, animals, help the park personnel in their duties and enjoy the park when you are not working. At the end of your commitment, the volunteer coordinator would be happy to sign any form your school may require to prove you participated and some of what you learned during your stay.
This type of opportunity will also work for history majors, archeologists and even some artists fields such as photography, painting, and writing. There are lots of historical state parks for battles, historical buildings, archeology sites, as well as, parks for a famous Florida writer, lots of opportunities for nature photography and painting our unique forests, wildlife, beaches, and other lovely scenery.
You will only need to work about 20 to 30 hours per week, 3 to 4 days a week. After 500 hours you get a free year’s pass to any Florida State Park. You get to use the facilities inside the park for free during your off hours. There are 175 different Florida State Parks, Trails and Preserves and 100 of those have live on-site volunteer opportunities and 95% of those needs help during the summer months. And you get to meet some truly nice people along the way. The parks could really use your help during the summer months and you get to spend time in a great park while receiving college credit and work experience.