Whale Scout, a nonprofit organization based in King County, Washington is looking for student summer interns to assist with salmon habitat restoration, riparian research and monitoring, and outreach/educational activities with diverse audiences. Dedicated to protecting Pacific Northwest whales through land-based conservation experiences, Whale Scout takes a boots-on-the-ground approach to recovering endangered Southern Resident killer whales and the salmon they rely upon. We acknowledge that we are on the ancestral lands of the Coast Salish people, and recognize that certain local communities of color, including indigenous people are often disproportionately impacted by lack of salmon, poor water quality, and access to outdoor environmental experiences and education. Our programs, including this internship, work to address these issues. We are seeking applicants whose backgrounds, experiences, skills, and interests align with environmental justice goals related to Puget Sound. This internship will offer students the opportunity to learn about killer whales, salmon habitat, native vegetation, water quality, communication, community building, and non-profit organizational management. It will offer those 17 and older field experience educating the public including diverse families. The internship may also include opportunities to participate in day trips to San Juan Island and local Puget Sound beaches to facilitate educational land-based whale watching opportunities depending on COVID-19 levels. Activities will be adjusted to comply with all COVID-19 guidelines. Three positions are available lasting 10 weeks with a $1,000 stipend to cover travel and associated expenses. Applications due April 26th.

Description of Responsibilities

Watering, weeding, maintenance, and monitoring of newly planted native vegetation at restoration sites within north King County

Riparian and water quality monitoring at our Bear Creek site

Outreach performing educational activities working with kids and families in King County as health guidelines permit 

Compiling and delivering Orca Conservation Kits throughout the Puget Sound region and King County

Land-based whale watching with the public at Puget Sound beaches and possibly day trips to San Juan Island (3-5) as part of the San Juan Island Naturalist Program if health guidelines permit

Development of short, educational videos 

Data entry and some administrative tasks

Independent reading, learning and research

Required attendance at online trainings in May (4 two-hour sessions on weekends, online) 


$1,000 stipend to cover the cost of travel and associated expenses

Field experience

Continuing educational opportunities 

Networking opportunities 

Experience working with diverse communities

Learn salmon habitat restoration and water quality testing techniques 

Upon successful completion of internship, letter(s) of recommendation for future positions

Desired start date 

Participation in weekend training sessions online in May (4, two-hour sessions)

Internship start date: June 7th (phased-in start, independent study week 1, site orientations week 2)


Applications due: April 26th

Interviews: via ZOOM May 4, 5, 6

Internship June 7th – August 15th


Commitment 20 hours per week (approx). 

Schedule can vary and include some weekends

Skills and Qualifications 

Open mind and willingness to explore other points of view 

Computer skills – use of Google products such as Google calendar, Google docs, Google sheets/excel and Zoom. Must have access to a computer/internet/email regularly

Be able to lift 40 lbs

Interest in teaching a diverse group of students both in and out of the classroom.

Proven personal initiative and ability to multitask, prioritize, use good judgement, problem solve, and work effectively both independently and as a team in a fast-paced environment.

Ability to hike several miles and serve outdoors in all weather conditions.

Demonstrated written and oral communication skills and detail-oriented organizational skills.

Must be at least 17 years old on first day of internship

Must provide personal transportation to sites across King County and Anacortes, Wa. Travel to south Puget Sound and Mount Vernon for field trips may be possible.

Must possess a valid driver’s license

Must successfully pass a criminal history background check.

Must be a U.S. citizen, national or lawful permanent resident alien.

Willingness to store and/or transport materials to and from home.

Some basic knowledge of Pacific Northwest ecosystems, flora and fauna.

Willingness to learn more about the threats and science regarding Southern Resident killer whales

Housing not provided.

We encourage people of all backgrounds and identities to apply, including Native American and people of color, immigrants, refugees, women, LGBTQ+, people living with disabilities, and veterans. No person is unlawfully excluded from employment opportunities based on race, color, religion, national origin, sex (including gender identity, sexual orientation and pregnancy), age, genetic information, disability, veteran status, or other protected class. 

We consider the “whole applicant,” working to develop a cohort of interns with unique perspectives each year. Typically we receive far more applicants than available positions.  

To apply, fill out and return this application by April 26th, 2021.


Leave a comment