Thinking about interning abroad in beautiful Greece? Kacie Larsen, an aspiring Marine Conservationist from the USA tells us about her experience as an Aegean Marine Science & Island Conservation intern. Read about the tasks she was involved in, her favorite memories, successes and how the experience contributed to her long-term career goals.
This internship is exactly the experience I was hoping for to kick off my future career in Marine Conservation. I have learnt so many valuable skills, participated in fieldwork, collecting, and assessing data on marine habitats and species.
Through my role with a leading Marine Conservation NGO, I have had the opportunity to support daily operations and assist crew in large projects. I have learned how to map out distributional data of sea turtle species using GIS, a useful skill I have been wanting to add to my resume that I know will help with future employment. The surveys I participate in added to the research database used by present and future team members for many conservation efforts.
Independent and collaborative project work
During my internship, I was in charge of my own independent research project on cetacean conservation, as well as helping with the organization’s wider projects on a sea turtle conservation report, seagrass and marine mammal surveys.
This involved data collection and analysis, written communication, and both team and independent working skills. I learned how to balance each of these tasks to reach expected deadlines, the basics of environmental research and how to better work with a team of people on a given project.
Having had both individual, and collaborative projects has given me the experience to be a valuable team player, while also knowing how to manage a project on my own. Most valuable of all, I finally got to do the type of marine conservation work I have been dreaming of. From here I plan to continue traveling and connecting with people from around the world.
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How my Marine Science internship has set me up for success
Having completed my internship, I can definitely say that I feel successful. I have travelled the world and experienced another culture outside my own for the first time. I have worked with a marine conservation institute and completed research on marine mammals and sea turtles, all while getting my SCUBA certification. I have developed and utilized many skills such as research, writing, QGIS, marine species recognition, knowledge of boat safety and research protocols.
This internship has involved so many personal and professional goals of mine, and I absolutely consider it a success. After this experience, I feel more empowered to succeed in my career field. I have gained a great appreciation for the Mediterranean and the marine species I had the opportunity to research. I have a desire to learn more and protect the ocean. I am excited to share all I have learned with others and encourage them to join in my efforts to conserve our beautiful planet.
Why I loved interning in Greece
While my favorite memory in Greece is difficult to choose, I would have to say the walk from the ferry terminal to my accommodation base and just making my way through the streets of a small Greek island for the very first time was most memorable. It was the start of meeting people from all around the world, connecting with like-minded people and learning about marine conservation and how to identify marine mammals. It was everything I dreamed it would be everything I wanted from this experience.
How I felt returning home after my internship abroad
When it came to returning home, the hardest part was saying goodbye to the people I had met. I will really miss everyone I spent those 3 months with. So many memories have been shared with them. It was also difficult saying goodbye to life by the sea and life as a marine conservationist. I will miss the ocean and the weekly boat rides. I will miss spending everyday learning how to better protect the ocean.
How can I get started?
Our step-by-step guide on how it works provides you with more information on how to get started. The process is user friendly and there are two options you can take to get the ball rolling.
If you’re unsure of which internship program is right for you, you can simply check availability to submit an enquiry which will help us to point you in the right direction. If you want to chat over the phone, you can also find our full contact information here.
If you already have an idea of what you want to do, and when you want to do it, you can submit your application. It doesn’t cost anything and won’t take more than 5 minutes. However, your formal expression of interest provides the foundation for us to help you take the next steps.