APCC Cyanobacteria Monitoring Internships, Summer-Fall 2023
Association to Preserve Cape Cod
APCC seeks multiple interns to assist staff in monitoring cyanobacteria in freshwater ponds on Cape Cod. Monitoring begins in late May and continues through October or November. Two different timelines for internships are offered. Sampling is done from shore or in shallow wadeable water. Samples are processed at APCC headquarters in Dennis, analyzed in our lab using microscopy and fluorometry to measure cyanobacteria pigments, and results are reported out within a week. Internships are paid but no benefits are provided. Applicants should have their own car as there will be travel to and from ponds to obtain water samples.See full description below.
The Association to Preserve Cape Cod (APCC) seeks multiple interns to assist staff with our Cyanobacteria Monitoring Program. APCC is a 501(c)(3) environmental organization founded in 1968 to promote policies and programs that foster preservation of Cape Cod’s natural resources. Our goals are to preserve, protect, and restore Cape Cod’s natural resources and environment (https://apcc.org ). Our monitoring programs are designed to provide science-based information to inform outreach, policies, and actions to achieve goals.
Background: APCC’s cyanobacteria monitoring program is a Cape-wide initiative to collect and analyze monitoring data on cyanobacteria in freshwater ponds on Cape Cod, and to communicate results to stakeholders and local officials. For the 2023 season (May – November), APCC is partnering with organizations and local officials to monitor ponds in each of the 15 towns on Cape Cod, with a target of 130 ponds monitored across the region.
Description of Positions: APCC is offering internships covering two separate timelines. One position begins in mid-May and ends in mid-November and a second position begins in mid-May and ends in late August. These are paid internships with no benefits. The typical work schedule is a 37.5-hour work week over 4 days per week. The candidate must have their own vehicle and driver's license as work often involves traveling to and from sampling locations (mileage from will be covered).
Responsibilities: Intern tasks will include the following:
- Travelling by car, on foot, and by boat to sampling locations on freshwater ponds on Cape Cod;
- Collecting field data and water samples and transporting samples to APCC’s headquarters in Dennis for processing;
- Processing samples in APCC’s lab, including sample separation and microscopy;
- Using a fluorometer to measure cyanobacteria and algal pigments;
- Recording field and lab data and quality control measures using Microsoft Excel;
- Preparation of data sheets, reports, summaries, and spreadsheets;
- Uploading results to APCC’s interactive website;
- Assisting APCC staff with coordination and communication with volunteers and program partners to collect and process samples as described above;
- Assisting APCC staff with development of outreach materials; and
- Assisting researchers with cutting edge studies on cyanobacteria.
Required Experience and Skills:
- Water quality monitoring, especially related to cyanobacteria, algae and/or nutrient cycling in freshwater ponds.
- Coursework in Limnology, Biology, Ecology, Chemistry and/or other sciences related to aquatic systems.
- Ability to follow defined procedures for environmental sampling, processing and analysis, and to carry out complex laboratory procedures.
- Use of microscopes to examine water samples.
- Computer skills and experience with Office 365, Excel, and Word;
- Use of Excel or other software to organize and analyze data.
- Statistical analysis of environmental monitoring data.
- Comfort and safety on, in, and around water including boating, swimming, wading, etc.
- Use of handheld GPS and use of GIS.
- Excellent communication skills, verbal and written, and experience in preparing clear written reports in MS Word or other word processing software.
- Ability to work in a timely manner to meet defined schedules.
Safety Note: This position will require working in close proximity to toxin-producing cyanobacteria that may be present in ponds. While mild human exposure generally results in little or no reaction, there is potential for health impacts ranging from mild irritation from skin contact to severe illness and death associated with ingestion of water containing cyanotoxins. By taking proper safety precautions, we do not expect or foresee any negative health impacts from participation in this monitoring program, but all participants should be aware of potential risks in order to make personal decisions about their level of participation. APCC staff will provide training in measures to avoid or minimize contact with cyanobacteria while sampling and processing samples. Interns and staff are expected to observe these measures.
APCC endeavors to provide a supportive, creative, motivating, and safe work environment. We are an equal opportunity employer. All applicants will be considered for employment without attention to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, veteran or disability status.
To apply, email a cover letter with your preferred positional timeline and a resume to Lynn Francis at email@example.com .