Norris Center Internships

Norris Center Internships Available Now

All internships are available for 2 units (6 hours per week). We can offer internships for 5 units (12 hours per week), if you have already completed an internship with the Norris Center in the past. If you're interested in an internship, email with which internship you are interested in, why, and a screenshot of your class schedule for the quarter. Unless otherwise noted.

Internships for COVID-19 Times (Winter 2023) 

1) Senior internships and senior theses. Got a research idea that you want to try out? Got a favorite organism that you want to learn more about? Contact us to set up a two-quarter-long (5 units each quarter) project.

2) Norris Center Herbarium Internship: Interns will help accession and digitize plant specimens from around the Central Coast of California. In addition to helping press, mount and label regional specimens (including new species!), students will help scan images and score phenology for an ongoing plant phenology project at the Norris Center. Skills gained include plant taxonomy, herbarium organization and curation, plant morphology and online databasing. Internships are 6 hours a week. Meetings on Thursday at 9AM-12PM are mandatory for this internship.

3) Taxidermy Internship: Interns will work to turn dead, salvaged birds or small mammals into scientific museum study skins or for skeletal prepaetaions. Following detailed taxidermy instructions, students will skin and prepare birds to be used by researchers and classes at the Norris Center. Skills gained will include bird identification, bird morphology, museum collection curation and taxidermy. This internship ONLY meets Thursdays at 12PM-6PM.

 4) Bird-window Collision Internship (internship FULL for winter 2023): Did you know that over 1 billion birds die from collisions with windows in the United States each year? If you want to help understand why birds hit windows and how to could prevent it, right here on our campus, become an intern! Help document collisions spatially, and identify the most problematic windows so that we can advocate to make them bird safe. Some of the internship duties are; survey buildings on campus looking for bird carcasses, document collision events, and bring the carcasses to the Norris Center, and help design and update survey protocol. Must apply through this link, meeting times TBA. Internship FULL for winter 2023. Please consider one of our other internships.

5) Natural History Museum Management and Curation (internship FULL for winter 2023)Interns will help keep the Norris Center collections working smoothly. Projects include pest management, organizing specimens, databasing specimens, digitizing specimen collections, working to inventory existing specimens, organizing specimens, and conducting outreach events in the campus and greater community. Interns will help with the day to day operations of the Norris Center, which may range from curation tasks, checking out materials, organizing, pulling and returning specimens, preparing labs, helping to answer questions, and planning. Interns will also help collect squirrel data on an ongoing squirrel research project. Skills gained include strong museum curation and management skills, taxonomic knowledge of any group of organisms, online databasing, outreach experience, and research experience. Meetings for this internship are on Monday and Wednesday 10:30am - 1:30pm. Internship FULL for winter 2023. Please consider one of our other internships.

6) Natural History Museum: Projects with Entomological Collections (internship FULL for winter 2023): Interns will learn the foundations of Hymenopteran (bees, ants, wasps) morphology and taxonomy so they can curate the Randall Morgan Hymenoptera  collection. Curation will involve moving and labeling already-pinned specimens between unit trays with the goal of creating an organized reference collection of all of our bees. We are looking for students with an invested interest in insect curation and a strong attention to detail. Required meetings for this internship are on Mondays and Wednesdays 3-5pm and 2 additional hours that you will need to talk to us about. Internship FULL for winter 2023. Please consider one of our other internships.

7) Museum Education and Outreach: In this internship students devlope education displays, create outreach materials, and conduct outreach activities. Meetings for this internship are on Tuesdays and Thursdays 3pm - 5:00pm and 2 additional hours.

8) Fungus internship (internship FULL for winter 2023): We are looking for 1-2 students to assist in the digitization and organization of the fungal specimens collected around Santa Cruz county for the Fungarium at the Ken Norris Natural History Center. Students involved will be trained to accession specimens, create associated labels, enter accessioned specimens into the MycoPortal online database, and assist with the upkeep of accessioned specimens. This is a wonderful opportunity to work with fungi while gaining experience with curation and data management. Required meetings for this internship are on Mondays and Wednesdays from 1-4pm. Internship FULL for winter 2023. Please consider one of our other internships.

9) Field Inquiry Mentor: Lead nature explorations through campus wildlands for first year Kresge, College, Rachel Carson College and Merrill College students & develop naturalist and environmental education skills. MANDATORY TRAINING SESSIONS: Weekend training Sat AM to Sun AM Sept 24-25 or Oct 1-2. Must apply through this link. Falls only