Presentation Internship - Year Long
The Rocky Mountain Raptor Program (RMRP) works to inspire the protection and appreciation of raptors, and the spaces where they live, through excellence in rehabilitation, education, and research. We have been providing community and public education across northern Colorado focusing on raptors and their ecosystems for more than 30 years. The Presentation Internship position offers opportunities to develop conservation education skills, learn about local raptor species and habitats, learn to safely work around the non-releasable ambassador raptors, and discover a variety of ways to connect community members to conservation through educational outreach and programming.
The department houses 20+ permanently disabled raptors, who work as ambassadors to the public for conservation education. We offer 250+ days of community outreach and education annually, including at K-12 schools, universities, community organizations, public events, public and private gatherings, and through social media.
Internships can be used for academic or vocational purposes but interns are responsible for making the arrangements necessary to receive relevant credit as a result of completing the internship. Please notify the RMRP if the internship will be used for this purpose.
As an intern, you will be expected to work hard and get dirty! There is a lot to learn and the curve is steep at first, designed to prepare you to work safely and effectively around the facility and raptor ambassadors and to fulfill department goals. While working with the ambassadors is a desirable and enjoyable activity, our primary focus is on providing education, so you will be spending lots of time learning about raptors and conservation issues and talking with the public.
We look for people that are dedicated, self-starting, willing to work hard, detail-oriented and enthusiastic. The intern that demonstrates reliability, attention to detail, quality communication skills, creative thinking, and dedicated to learning will be most successful.
The year round presenter internship is designed to develop knowledge and skills during the fall, then apply that learning to educational programming in the spring for predominately K-6 students, and support public outreach events during the summer.
Position is unpaid. Hours worked can be exchanged for merchandise in the gift shop. Housing is not provided. Intern is expected to have their own transportation to and from the RMRP facility. The position has minimal supervisory duties. An RMRP shirt will be provided for working at public events.
- Must be 18 years of age or older.
- Have a valid driver’s license.
- Be willing/able to drive (or learn) 12 passenger van.
- A criminal and motor vehicle background check will be performed.
- Working around the ambassadors is a privilege, as they are wild animals despite living in human care. Respectful treatment of the ambassadors and their autonomy is expected.
- Agree to follow all safety protocols as instructed by staff and accept the inherent risk in working with potentially dangerous wildlife.
- Have a current tetanus shot.
- Understand that you will be working with/or exposed to cleaning chemicals (safety equipment is provided), feces, urine, blood, raptor bodily fluids, and raw meat/organs (prey items).
- Be able to meet the physical requirements of the position: walking/standing on concrete, uneven surfaces, in gravel, mud, dirt, snow, standing water, and ice. Physically active with the ability to kneel, bend, stretch, reach, and full body maneuverability. Hand strength and grip ability with occasional fine finger dexterity.
- Ability to work indoors and outdoors in all weather conditions and temperatures.
- Ability to communicate well in written and oral forms including hearing and talking with members of the public.
Hours per week: 10+
- At least one weekday availability during school hours/school year required
- Availability on Wednesday afternoon/evening highly desired
- Availability on one weekend day per week during summer required
Time frame: August to August
Learn natural history and identification of 30 species of raptors and personal histories of 20+ ambassadors.
Develop an understanding of raptor related conservation issues in the local community and how to speak effectively with the public regarding these issues.
Develop knowledge of raptor habits, habitats, and behavior.
Complete a variety of classes (in-person and/or on Google Classroom) for the above described learning. Training for animal care is designed to meet requirements outlined by Colorado Parks and Wildlife, chapter 9.
Develop an understanding of the rehabilitation practices of the RMRP.
- Opportunities to attend rescues, releases, necropsies, and observe other rehabilitation activities and care of patients may be available as scheduling allows.
Provide daily husbandry care of ambassadors according to training standards:
- Carry buckets (approx. 4 gallons) of water for extended distances
- Move multiple hoses of 100+ feet in length
- Rake gravel, shovel snow
- Scrub walls, perches, and various surfaces
- Deep clean and disinfect enclosures
- Read, write and maintain records of raptor care
- Assist in daily facility maintenance (cleaning bathrooms, sweeping, mopping, laundry, other general cleaning)
- Utilize observational skills to monitor ambassadors for health issues and behavior
- Learn to prepare and deliver raptor food (gut, butcher, and portion dead prey items)
- Follow established biosecurity and cleanliness protocols
- Communicate effectively and timely with volunteers and staff
Present in-person and virtual conservation education programming, consistent with messaging of the department, to a wide variety of audiences of varying sizes (up to 200 people).
Utilize social media (Facebook, YouTube, and Instagram) to connect the public to the work and mission of the RMRP, consistent with messaging of the department.
Provide at least one 5-10 minute live stream/month, delivered on YouTube, on a Wednesday:
- During the summer, 4:30-6:15 pm
- During the winter, 3-5:30 pm
- Other times as needed/desired
Run tech support for at least one live stream/month (start and stop stream, monitor chat, troubleshoot) using Open Broadcasting Software (OBS) – training provided.
Develop knowledge of the in-house studio equipment, including set up, storage, maintenance, and usage.
Develop knowledge of YouTube Live to produce weekly live streams.
Assist with community outreach events (such as festivals) to engage the public:
- Set up and take down booth (tents, tables, equipment, merchandise, ambassadors)
- Sell merchandise using iPad and Square, cash managment
- Safe packing of mobile store and equipment
- Provide general information to the public about the RMRP mission and work
- Provide education and connection opportunities to audiences of all ages either one-on-one or to a large (up to 100+ people) group
- Solicit donations
- May work with ambassador on display
- May drive a 12 or 15 passenger van