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Cary interns have the opportunity to receive training and professional development in the field of study in which the internship is based.

In addition to offering the following list of potential projects, we also encourage students to contact Cary scientists and other staff for internship projects that are developed by the student and performed under the mentorship of a Cary employee.

To solicit an internship, please submit an email with a cover letter to the intended mentor explaining your interest in their work and how your project might fit in with their program.

The Cary Institute views credit-bearing internship arrangements as a 3-way partnership in which the student develops professional skills, the college provides credit and the Cary Institute acts as mentor for the development of those skills through the completion of an internship project.

MH-YES Undergraduate Intern 

Focus: Terrestrial watershed ecology
Application Deadline: April 30, 2021

MH-YES Program Description

The Mid-Hudson Young Environmental Scientists (MH-YES) program is a tiered mentorship field research experience whereby eight high school students local to Dutchess County, New York are mentored in teams by two undergraduate students, two high school teachers, and advised by four scientists from Cary Institute and Marist College. The two undergraduate students serve as “near-peer” mentors to the high school students and fulfill an integral role in cultivating a supportive, positive learning environment while performing field research about watershed ecology.

One undergraduate from Marist College will serve as the “aquatic” mentor, while Cary Institute will have one undergraduate to serve as the “terrestrial” mentor. This internship is for Cary Institute’s “terrestrial” undergraduate mentor.

Position Duration: Four weeks (35 hours per week):

  • 3-week program full-time (15 days): July 26- August 13
  • Equivalent of 1 week (5 days): 3 days pre-program (between July 19 & 23) and 2 days post-program (between August 16 & 20)

Primary Benefits:

  • Learn field research techniques for watershed ecology data collection.
  • Network and learn from teachers, scientists, educators, and students.
  • Develop mentoring skills and confidence in teaching.
  • Gain knowledge of the terrestrial and aquatic ecology of the Hudson River watershed.

Primary Responsibilities:

Help plan and prepare for program (2-3 days):

  • Attend one after-school orientation in June.
  • Assist program coordinator with pre-program preparation of materials and tools.
  • Participate in one half-day of team building activities with the high school students and program coordinator in July.
  • Attend a Cary-lead mentorship workshop in July with teachers and scientists.

Support high school students in environmental science field research during the program (3 weeks)

  • Model field data collection protocols.
  • Be responsible for helping maintain a healthy environment for all participants.
  • Assist with field work preparation each day, including equipment repair and maintenance as needed.
  • Monitor students’ data collection and accurate recording.
  • Build positive relationships among students.
  • Work collaboratively with students, high school teachers, scientists, and Cary educators.
  • Serve as the communication “bridge” between students and the other mentors.
  • Advise students in basic data analysis and their final project.
  • Encourage and motivate students, as well as create a welcoming and inclusive environment for what may be their very first field experience.

Help complete and evaluate the program (2-3 days)

  • Complete documentation and evaluation of the program (surveys).
  • Be responsible for organizing data with metadata, and all program products (electronic files).
  • Clean program tools and work spaces.

Required Qualifications:

  • Currently enrolled in undergraduate courses in environmental science and ecology or a related field
  • Field research experience from college, internships, or jobs
  • Excellent writing, computer, and organizational skills
  • Desire to mentor and serve as a positive role model for high school students in field environmental science research about watershed ecology
  • Willingness to work outdoors the majority of the three-week program
  • Living in Dutchess County, New York
  • Ability to provide own transportation throughout the internship

Preferred Qualifications:

  • Coursework in education and/or teaching experience
  • Previous participant of the MH-YES and/or TIDES (with New York Department of Environmental Conservation) programs
  • Interest in terrestrial components of a watershed (e.g., soil microbial ecology, soil chemistry, wildlife, etc.)

Compensation: This is a paid internship opportunity. The selected undergraduate will be paid bi-weekly and will receive a total stipend of $2,400. The four weeks consist of the 3-week program, 2-3 days pre-program, and 2-3 days post-program. Finalist candidates must complete a background check.

Reports to: Ashley Alred, MH-YES Program Coordinator

Questions? Email 

Interested? Apply now! Deadline is April 30, 2021


White-tailed Deer Ecology and Management

Note: we are suspending this internship for Spring 2021

Availability: Ongoing, spring and fall semesters
Compensation:  Unpaid position with the expectation the intern will receive credits through his/her school

Browsing by overabundant deer can degrade plant communities and cause declines in animal populations that use those habitats.  Protection of our forested ecosystems from excessive browsing by deer is one of the priority management goals for the Cary Institute property.

The White-tailed Deer Ecology and Management Intern will assist the Manager of Field Research and Outdoor Programs with aspects of the Institute's deer management program. The intern will gain field experience monitoring deer and other wildlife using trail cameras. Data collection and management experience will be gained by downloading and organizing photos/videos, recording animal incidence and behavior data from photos/videos, and related tasks.

Depending on the time of year, the student may also be involved in other aspects of deer management such as field surveys quantifying deer browsing of trees or oversight of our annual controlled deer hunt.

This internship is most suitable for a student in biology, wildlife biology, conservation/environmental sciences, or related field who is interested in gaining real-world experience with wildlife ecology and management.

The student must be able to hike to remote parts of the property and work outdoors under adverse conditions such as in inclement weather and around insects and poison ivy.  The student should be willing to learn to use a GPS, trail cameras and computer programs including spreadsheets. The student must have a valid driver's license.

We will work with academic institutions to provide credit for this unpaid internship. Scope of the internship can vary depending on college requirements and the number of credits the intern would like to earn.

Contact: Mike Fargione |