Last summer, I took a big summer trip to Yosemite National Park. It was incredible, so much so that I began to plan for a return trip immediately after I got home. I found out a few weeks ago that I will be vacationing there again this upcoming summer, this time traveling through their High Sierra Camps. I am super excited!
Before last summer’s trip, I highlighted the Student Conservation Association (SCA), an excellent resource for finding internship opportunities with the National Park Service, with whom they are a partner. However, the SCA isn’t the only resource for finding opportunities to work with in our national parks.
Many internships/jobs for students are filled at the park level. If there is a national park that you are really interested in working for, contact them directly. Might I suggest Yosemite 😉
Since UW-Whitewater has both MBA and MPA programs, I should mention the National Parks Business Plan Internship. Up to 15 summer “consultants” are brought on board. The students are grouped into teams of two to three and are assigned to work at one of our national parks. The consultants work with park management to conduct financial and strategy analysis. Transportation to the training session, to the park, and from the park back home are covered. Plus, summer consultants receive a weekly stipend AND are provided with housing.
The Cultural Resources Diversity Internship Program is open to diverse undergraduate and graduate students. Interns are placed in opportunities for historic preservation and cultural resources work. These summer internships include a Career Workshop in Washington, DC, a weekly stipend, and housing allowance.
If you are at all interested in working for the National Park Service, you have a ton of resources available to find that perfect internship. Hope to see you out there!
Friday afternoon, I had the pleasure of speaking to students in the class Frontiers of Engineering & Physics (Physics 190). The course focuses on career paths and opportunities in engineering and physics. I talked about the changing nature of the workplace and what employers seek in potential employees as well as how to enhance their marketability for internships and jobs.
Physics students could pursue a variety of career paths, from direct science fields – space & earth sciences, environmental science, computer science – to non-technical fields such as law, business, journalism, and science communication. Work could be found in education (K-12 or college/university), the government, in hospitals and medical centers, and even with non-profit organizations.
So what kinds of internship opportunities might a physics major pursue? Here are some examples.
Abbott offers opportunities in engineering as part of their US Internship Program. Interns might work on instrument development, manufacturing support, and systems design. Abbott’s corporate headquarters is about 40 miles north of Chicago, close to the WI/IL border.
Further to the north, find Lockheed Martin in Eagan, MN. At this location, your internship could involve engineering-related work (computer, industrial, electrical, mechanical, or systems) with Maritime Systems & Sensors or Transportation & Security Solutions. Even though you might find opportunities in Minnesota, there are opportunities throughout the US. Interns receive mentoring and coaching from experienced professionals, and they do real work.
Argonne National Laboratory is a major research center for the US Department of Energy just outside of Chicago. Argonne offers internships during the fall, spring, and summer in physical/life sciences, math, computer science, and engineering research programs. There are also applied research programs relating to energy, conservation, nanomaterials, and national security. The positions are paid and participants are provided with housing.
Want to get away from Wisconsin? Head out to California to intern with another Department of Energy lab, the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. They offer 8-10 week summer internships in radiation detection, optical imaging, astrophysics, nuclear physics, high energy density physics, plasma physics and fusion energy for undergraduate or graduate students.
Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) through the US National Science Foundation is a well-know and respected program. Undergraduate researchers work as a team of around 10 at a host institution. Each student works closely with a faculty mentor on a specific research project. Student researchers earn stipends and often receive assistance with housing and travel. REU sites are all over the US, including several UW institutions. Interested students can search for opportunities by discipline, area of research, and/or by state.
Finally, no matter the physics-related path chosen, involvement in UW-Whitewater’s Undergraduate Research Program is an excellent opportunity for experience. Working with a faculty mentor and participating in UW-W’s Undergraduate Research Day, UW System Symposium, and/or the National Conference on Undergraduate Research (NCUR) also offer ample opportunities to build your network.
Last week was Spring Break here at UW-Whitewater. The campus was, of course, extremely quiet as students enjoyed their trips either to home or to someplace more exotic. I wasn’t traveling but was here at work, dreaming of my upcoming vacation to Yosemite National Park. This will be my first visit to a national park and a huge boost to my budding outdoorsy interests.
I realize that I might be new to this nature-loving lifestyle, but others have grown up with it. If you are one of those people or if, like me, you’re new to adventurous living, check out The Student Conservation Association (SCA). Since 1957, the SCA has been placing volunteers in conservation service opportunities. The SCA has grown to include several different programs, one of which is SCA Internships.
Welcome back UW-W students! Are you all ready for the spring semester? Ready to start the search for the “perfect” summer internship? ‘Tis the season!
I’m going to use this first post of the spring semester to give an overview of some new resources and upcoming events to help you in your quest to find an internship.
UWW Internship Week, March 1-4
I’ll be pounding the pavement to promote all of the UWW internship resources, answer your internship questions, and provide guidance for your search. I’ll be running an Internship Search Bootcamp on Monday, March 1 and will be hosting Internship Outposts in various locations around campus throughout the week. FYI – there will be prizes involved! Stay tuned to the Student Internships Blog and Twitter for more information.
The Intern Spotlight feature on the blog started late last semester and will continue this semester. I’m so glad to have finally added this feature – the insight and advice provided by current and past UWW interns is amazing! If you didn’t see the Spotlights from last semester, be sure to check them out: Michael Van Den Bosch ’08 and Danielle Calkins ’10. If you have or had an internship experience and think that other students could benefit from your story, please email me a brief synopsis of your internship story to be considered for a future Intern Spotlight.
I’m really excited about the semester ahead! I know the internship search can be challenging, so please let me know how I can assist you in the process. Have a great spring semester!