Eligibility requirement: Suitable for undergraduate and/or postgraduate students looking for a field experience or an avenue to gain course credit.

Associated career paths: Marine Biologist, Oceanographer, Environmental Management, Fisheries Biologist, Biological Technician, Geographer, Microbiologist, Hydrologist, Biochemist, Environmental Scientist (Policy/Planning/Law), Environmental Impact Assessment Specialist, Ecologist, Education and Outreach Program Coordinator, Climatologist

Minimum duration: 3 weeks

Internship details

Gain unique experience on this marine conservation internship in Greece. Help on a research vessel with top scientists from one of the Mediterrenean’s top research centers.

The Aegean Marine Science and Island Conservation internship is a top-rated marine conservation internship in Greece. Interns are placed with multi-functional research bases on Samos Island and Lipsi Island, and spend time on a research vessel helping to gather data on rotating fields, including marine mammals, coastal biodiversity, environmental conservation, microplastic research.

International Internships for Marine Sciences

Research boats serve as important mobile platforms for research and conservation work on smaller Mediterrenean islands such as Ikaria and Leros, and enable interns to gain valuable insight into environmental law and policy, boat and land-based surveying, bioacoustics, photo identification, and anthropogenic impact studies. Interns are supervised by experienced marine scientists and conservationists, who provide instruction and guidance into proper methodologies.

Practical conservation field work is also accompanied by office-based tasks, assisting media campaigns that raise public awareness of environmental issues. Interns can be expected to contribute with wildlife and landscape photography, producing documentaries, or graphic and animation design for conservation. Interns may request a focus on campaign-related tasks, though this is subject to availability.

Short term Marine Science and Island Conservation interns (those joining for less than six weeks) will be focused on prescribed research areas, while those interning for more than six weeks can have more ability for autonomous, self-directed study. All internship activities are subject to weather conditions.

International Internships for Environmental Sciences

Marine Science and Island Conservation interns learn from a qualified and experienced supervisor, and can be involved in:
  • Gathering data on marine mammls, coastal biodiversity, environmental conservation and microplastics
  • Environmental law and policy
  • Sea and land-based surveying
  • Bioacoustics
  • Photo identification
  • Anthropogenic impact studies
  • Assisting media campaigns and awareness
  • Wildlife and landscape photography
  • Producing documentaries
  • Graphic design and animation
Professional development opportunities:
  • Practical research experience in Mediterrenean marine environments
  • Get understanding in a range of marine science and conservation fields
  • Producing content for genuine conservation campaigns
Typical schedule:
  • Full time, Monday - Friday. Schedules can vary based on weather conditions and seasonal projects.
Internship highlights:
  • Experience in a diverse and stunning marine environment around the Greek islands
  • Conducting remote studies from a research vessel in the Mediterrenean
  • Supervision and guidance from experienced marine scientists and conservationists
  • Opportunities for independent research for longer term interns
Types of host organizations:
  • Research bases on the Greek islands of Samos and Lipsi
“Best decision I’ve ever made! The placement supervisors were great and had an awesome sense of humor and being surrounded by a new culture was a great experience. This internship led directly to a job just two weeks after my internship! I strongly recommend anyone to participate in this program!.” - Kevin Herrell, USA
Internship duration

Interns who join for a duration of 3 to 6 weeks will primarily be focused on the field course activities and rotate across focus areas accordingly. However, interns who commit to longer durations (such as up to 8 or 12 weeks, or longer) are expected to gain increased understanding and initiative during the internship, enabling them to become more proactive. Long term interns are therefore expected to establish and develop their area of focus over time to work more independently. This may include self-directed research project time (to do more analysis, spend more time in the laboratory, creation of media contact, photo identification work of marine mammals, etc), working with supervisors as colleagues to assist with research projects, taking on a team-leader role to assist with short-term interns, and helping with the ongoing operations of the Marine Conservation Institute. Priorities can vary depending on the season and changing projects.

Conditions

It is important to note that the rotating weekly schedules for all conservation work is subject to change due to weather conditions and seasonality. Conservation operations run year-round although a flexible mentality is required if weekly activities need to be rearranged due to weather events. The best time of year to visit for hot-weather activities is from mid June to mid September. The colder months are from late November through late March. The coldest day of the year is typically recorded in February and the wetter season lasts from early November through early April.

Intern review: Jenny Putnam

"I applied for an internship via Intern Abroad HQ for a marine mammal conservation role on a small Greek island called Samos. It was one of the best, most valuable experiences I could've asked for and I couldn't be more grateful to Intern Abroad HQ for helping me along the way with this wonderful experience. I really enjoyed my time and was even able to spend some time on another, more remote, island called Lipsi. I got to work with some amazing people during my time there, who will be friends for life, lead projects and really get stuck in with the work. The experience I had will stay with me forever and will hopefully prove very useful when I finish my degree and begin my job hunt."

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Program fees

Internship Duration Program Fee (USD)
3 weeks $2300
4 weeks $3000
6 weeks $4450
8 weeks $5050
10 weeks $5700
12 weeks $6300
14 weeks $6900
16 weeks $7600
20 weeks $8800
24 weeks $10000

Note that internships in Greece are provided through an organization which is accredited to run projects under Erasmus+ Volunteering and the European Solidarity Corps. European students are encouraged to speak with their university Erasmus office regarding funding and grants for this internship.

  • To convert these prices to your local currency visit the XE currency converter.
  • All Intern Abroad programs attract a Registration Fee of US$299 in addition to the Program Fee.
  • All payments attract a 5% transaction fee to cover international banking fees and currency charges. International wire transfer payments attract a minimum fee of US$75.
  • * Terms and Conditions do apply

What extra costs will I have?

  • Visa, flights, travel insurance (mandatory), vaccinations, criminal background check.
  • Transfer back to the airport at conclusion of the program.
  • Souvenirs + tourism/leisure activities during free time.
  • Personal spending money to cover basic expenses such as drinks, snacks, laundry, and public transportation. Interns generally find US$30 per week to be sufficient.

Registration fee

What it covers
  • Dedicated intern support
  • Personalized internship abroad plan
  • International internship reference
  • Experiential learning curriculum
  • Affordable internship fees
  • Flexible booking options

Program fee

What it covers
  • International internship placement
  • 24/7 in-country support
  • Airport pick-up
  • Program orientation
  • Accommodation
  • In-country guidance for social and tourism activities

Keen to get started?

Taking the first step is easy! Our team is here to provide friendly assistance, from your initial research and planning phases, right through until your internship completion. To get started, submit an application. It is free to apply and takes just 5 minutes.

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Arrival and Orientation

The internship schedule begins at the research base on Samos Island, located about 3.5 km from the small town of Pythagorio .

Pythagorio itself is approximately a 10-minute drive (5 km) from Samos International Airport. This base is a multifunctional facility and serves as the main centre for activities related to terrestrial conservation, as well as cultural and tourism activities related to archaeology and history.

Airport pick-up and accommodation are included in the Program Fee. The accommodation is covered from the Monday night of the Monday start date. Interns are required to arrive on their selected Monday start date in order to join the orientation accordingly. To receive the airport pick-up and be transported to the accommodation, all internship participants fly into Samos International Airport (SMI).

Upon arrival to the base / accommodation, interns are met by a local team member, who will greet them and assist with settling in. A short orientation of the base, as well as basic guidelines, are provided. Afterwards, there is free time to get settled in and rest. Full orientation and introductory meeting normally takes place the following day.

Please note that all participants are advised not to book flights until they have first registered to confirm their internship placement.

Accommodation

Internships in Greece are based between primary research bases (with adjacent accommodation) on Samos Island and Lipsi Island. The initial accommodation site and base is located on Samos Island or Lipsi Island. The arrival point for all program participants will be dependent on the program start date. Interns are likely to spend time at the bases on Lipsi and Samos Island, with the potential to also overnight on nearby islands. In all cases, interns should expect to share a room with 2 - 4 other program participants, of the same gender. Bathrooms are shared.

Living is comfortable and accommodation offers electricity, shared common kitchen/dining areas, running water and western bathrooms. There can occasionally be short-term power or water cuts, which cause temporary inconvenience. In such cases, local staff will ensure that proper reports are made to local authorities so that services can be restored as soon as possible. The bases on Samos Island and Lipsi Island have back-up water tanks for such events. Interns are recommended to keep their devices charged, in case of short-term power outages.

It’s important to note that showers are heated partially by solar power, so they are warm but not always piping hot. At times, the showers may be cold or lukewarm. During the colder months of the year, temperatures can be quite low so it is important to pack accordingly with warm clothing. Accommodation is not air conditioned. If you are sensitive to hot temperatures, this should be considered when planning a summer internship.

Wi-fi is available but the speed can often be slow during busy periods. It should not be used for streaming videos or music during working hours, as this will affect connectivity for people who are working and conducting research. Wi-fi is also very easily accessed in towns, with just about every cafe and restaurant offering connection to customers.

Meals

Internships in Greece include three meals per day, served at the accommodation/base. The style of food is typically Greek and dishes are simple, including dishes such as pastas, salads, legumes, seasonal fruit and vegetables. Please be sure to let us know of any specific dietary requirements that you have in advance, so that we may ensure your hosts are aware and make recommendations accordingly.

Activities and tourism

During the internship, informal Greek Lessons are provided at no additional cost, so interns can brush up on local language skills. Spare time during the weekends is available to relax, explore Samos, Lipsi, and other surrounding Greek Islands. There are no shortage of things to see and do, as the region has ample scenery, tourism attractions, culture and history.

In ancient times, Samos was said to be the most important city in the world, due to its location at the crossroads of sea routes, connecting Greece with East Asia and Africa. Ancient structures remain alongside more modern infrastructure, reminding residents of the island’s important past as a commercial, financial and intellectual hub.

The Archaeological Museum of Pythagorion, built in the center of Samos, hosts approximately 3,000 exhibits. Make sure you spend some time taking in the precious antiquities on display, to gain an appreciation of the area’s colorful history from the 5th millennium BC to the 7th c. AD. While you’re brushing up on your history, also visit the Archaeological Museum of Samos, where priceless treasures are on display, that were once brought by pilgrims to the sanctuary of Hera. The Heraion of Samos was one of ancient Greece’s most important sanctuaries, although the impressive temple was apparently never completed.

If you’ve an interest in engineering, don’t miss checking out the Eupalinos Tunnel, which was part of the island’s ancient water-supply system. Construction of the opening of the tunnel began simultaneously on both sides of the mountain, and the two independent crews of stone masons met in the middle, with almost no deviation from the straight line that Eupalinos had calculated - a truly astonishing feat.

Note that sometimes internship activities can take place over weekends, so a flexible nature is required.

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Country profile

Capital Athens
Population 10.75 million
Languages Greek
Currency Euro (€ - EUR)
Time zone UTC+02:00

Weather and climate: The climate of Greece is primarily Mediterranean, featuring mild, wet winters and hot, dry summers. In Samos, where the program is based (an island of the Eastern Aegean Sea, a short distance from the Turkish coast), the climate also follows typical Mediterranean patterns. The summers are hot, arid, and clear; the winters are long, cold, wet, and partly cloudy. It is windy in the Aegean Islands year-round. The best time of year to visit for fine weather activities is from mid-April to late-October. During this time, the average daily high temperature is above 84°F / 29°C. The colder months are from late November through late March, when the average daily high is below 61°F / 16°C. The coldest day of the year is typically recorded in February. The wetter season lasts from early November through early April and the drier season lasts from early April through till early November.