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COAST Student Internships Summer 2022

​​​California Ocean Science Trust 

Science to Accelerate Equit​able Climate Adaptation


Host: The California Ocean Science Trust (OST) is a nonprofit organization dedicated to bringing science advice and recommendations to decision-makers to accelerate progress toward a healthy and productive coast and ocean. Created by California legislation, OST formally bridges the gap between cutting-edge research and sound ocean management. We bring world-class research and innovation from the University of California, California State Universities and independent science institutions together with state policym​akers to foster action. 

Location: Primarily remote. OST is based in Sacramento (map​)​ but currently OST staff are working completely remotely from Sacramento, Oakland, and the greater Northern CA area. Some in-person participation may occur if local and state public health orders allow.

Internship Dates: June 1 - August 16, 2022; start and end dates are flexible with regard to student’s academic commitments and project schedule. 

Stipend: $6,000. Up to $2,000 in additional funding will be available to students who must relocate to participate in the internship.​​​

Time Commitment: The internship is a full-time, 11-week commitment. Over the 11 weeks, the intern may take up to five days off for personal reasons, vacation, or illness. If participation is less than 100 percent, the stipend will be prorated.

Position Description and Responsibilities:  One (1) internship is available to work to varying degrees with the full OST team. The intern will engage in a variety of projects across many program areas (e.g., diversity, equity, and inclusion in marine science, equity in coastal adaptation, science services for legislative staff) based on a balance between OST’s organizational needs and the intern’s background and interests. At least one of the projects in the intern’s portfolio will focus on environmental justice or equity within ocean science and management. 


Potential areas of engagement and tasks include:​

​Science Services for the Legislature: OST provides science advice directly to California Lawmakers through formal and informal briefings, technical feedback on bill ideas, or rapid response requests for information via memo or connections to experts. This program also involves proactive science delivery on issues reflecting the nexus between legislative priorities, emerging science, and actively unfolding executive policy issues, including but not limited to sea level rise adaptation, microplastic pollution, climate-smart fisheries, equity in nature-based adaptation, offshore wind energy, and more. The intern may:

  • ​Prepare science materials or memos on a diverse range of topics for staff in the Legislature and participate in planning meetings.
  • Assist with briefings including finding appropriate experts, drafting communication materials for legislative offices or the website, advertising, and providing technical support.
  • Support the team in assessing CA’s lawmaking priorities by researching bills, annual budgets, elected member profiles, following committee hearings, etc.

Working with the Ocean Protection Council Science Advisory Team (OPC SAT): OST coordinates all activities of the OPC SAT, a team of 30 interdisciplinary scientists from California and beyond that provide scientific and technical advice to the State and act as a conduit to the broader scientific community on behalf of decision-makers. New OPC SAT subcommittees are poised to launch in 2022, convened around the themes of the four OPC strategic plan priorities including blue economy, equity, biodiversity, and climate resilience. The intern may:

  • Support subcommittee activities including launch and convening of the subcommittee on equity and environmental justice.
  • Assist with tasks related to OPC SAT working procedures, including instating new members, and review and endorsement of products. 
  • Support OPC SAT communications, including development of webpage content, blog writing, newsletters, and social media.

Other projects, as determined, which may include work at the nexus of human health and climate change, equity within climate adaptation or living shorelines, and continued interest and efforts to advance diversity, equity, and inclusion in academia. 

Science Services Skills and Development Opportunities​:

  • ​Translational science writing, literature review, and communications: Translating complex science for diverse audiences to provide a rigorous foundation for policy and management dialogues. This may include developing white papers, translational reports, and meeting summaries on a range of topics, and assisting with science communications and online content development (e.g., blogs, webpages, newsletters, social media).
  • Project management: Project management tasks related to convening and coordinating groups of technical experts to develop products in support of management. This may include assisting OST staff with project scoping, developing workplans and budgets, scheduling and hosting meetings, development and review of products, and communications. 
  • Meeting and workshop planning: Assisting with planning and logistics for various meetings, conference calls, briefings, webinars and workshops with scientists and decision-makers. ​​

Preferred Experience and Capabilities: 

  • ​​​Strong interpersonal, analytic, and communication skills.​
  • ​Ability to work independently, as well as in a team environment.​
  • Interest in advancing a role for science in decision-making on behalf of California’s marine and coastal communities and ecosystems. ​​
  • Ability to take on diverse tasks and play a supporting role as needed to achieve organizational goals.
  • Ability to participate in collaborative processes to generate timely products and to work effectively with diverse public and private partners. ​
  • ​​Core internship duties may be performed by students with physical disabilities or lim​itations.​​​

Skills Gained: This internship will provide a diverse educational and career experience, including numerous opportunities to interact with high-level scientists, managers, policymakers, and other partners in the non-governmental organization and stakeholder communities. The intern will gain professional development by participating in meetings and workshops. OST will mentor the intern by supporting the development and pursuit of professional goals, offering assistance in resume building, and ens​uring the intern is provided networking opportunities.

Eligibility/Requirements: The intern must be authorized to work in the United States. Travel within California may be requested (pending public health orders). Applicants are also subject to general eligibil​ity requirements​​.