Summer 2017 Dolphin Research Internship Opportunity in Savannah, Georgia

Savannah, Georgia
Jan 25, 2017
Feb 15, 2017
SSUDS Internship - Summer 2017
Job Level
Entry level
Employment Type
Internship, Volunteer
Salary Type

The Savannah State University Dolphin Sciences Laboratory (SSUDS lab) is accepting applications for Summer 2017 interns.  There are 1-2 positions available.  Application deadline is February 15th

The SSUDS lab is located adjacent to the marsh on the campus of Savannah State University in coastal Georgia.  The SSUDS lab led by Dr. Tara Cox studies spatial ecology and conservation biology of long-lived marine vertebrates, marine and coastal policy and management, and human interactions with marine mammals.  Current projects include: Human-interaction behaviors (particularly begging), stock structure and abundance estimates, life history indices of moms and calves, and genetics of common bottlenose dolphins. In addition, there may be an opportunity to participate in a new manatee project.

Interns will support graduate research on common bottlenose dolphins living in the local waterways.  There may be additional opportunities to help other marine science graduate students with diverse fieldwork. 

Dates:  May 15th – Aug 18th (Start and end dates are flexible)

Location: Savannah State University in Savannah, Georgia

Time: Interns are expected to commit to 30-40 hours per week.  Time will be divided between lab and field work. 


  • Lab duties include: photo-identification, data entry and double checking
  • Field duties: assisting with small boat-based photo-identification surveys including sighting dolphins, recording data, photographing dorsal fins, and measuring environmental variables
  • Stranding response: although strandings are rare and unpredictable, you may be asked to help with data collection and necropsies

Extra Opportunities: Local Volunteer Opportunities: Previous interns have taken advantage of their spare time to get involved with our network of marine science researchers in Georgia

  1. Other SSU Marine Science Program Labs (field and lab research on sea stars, shrimp, flatfish, stingrays, oyster restoration, etc.)
  2. Tybee Island Marine Science Center (environmental education)
  3. Skidaway Institute of Oceanography
  4. GA DNR Non-game Department (cetacean, manatee, and sea turtle research)



  • Minimum age of 18 years old
  • Currently or recently enrolled in a college-level program in marine biology, biology, zoology, or related field
  • Strong interest in marine mammals, the environment, and conservation
  • Computer proficiency, especially MS Office; MS Access and ArcGIS experience a plus
  • Enthusiastic and dedicated, with strong interpersonal skills and able to maintain a professional appearance and demeanor
  • Strong sense of responsibility, work ethic, attention to detail, and ability to admit mistakes
  • Works well in a team environment as well as individually
  • Ability to work long days in the sun/heat on a small boat


To apply please submit the following via email with the subject “SSUDS Internship” to All attached files must be named starting with your last name (e.g. Lastname-SSUDS_application_spring_2016.doc, Lastname-transcript). Please combine your application materials into 1-2 files. 

  • A cover letter describing why you are interested in this position, how the experience will help you meet your long-term goals, and your dates of availability.
  • A resume (or curriculum vitae) describing your relevant training and experience.
  • Current academic transcripts (unofficial are sufficient).
  • Names and contact information for two references.

This position is unpaid, and interns are responsible for providing their own housing and transport to Savannah, GA.  If accepted, we can provide contact information for possible shared housing opportunities with SSU students. 

This is a great opportunity to work with scientists and graduate students in the field and lab while gaining experience with photo-identification and boat-based marine mammal surveys.  Savannah State University offers a Master of Science in Marine Sciences; thus, successful interns may have future opportunities for graduate study in the SSUDS lab.  For more information about Marine Sciences at SSU please visit: