Volunteer or Intern with Us!
Learn what it's like to work with The Ocean Project from four individuals who helped make World Ocean Day 2023 a big success.
This past year, four outstanding and dedicated interns worked with us to help support the thousands of event organizers across the globe in taking action for our one shared ocean.
Read about their experiences below!
As a lean organization (equivalent of three full-time staff) with a large global reach and impact, The Ocean Project loves working with interns who help us achieve our collaborative mission, which includes globally coordinating and growing the reach and impact of World Ocean Day since 2002. Interns are an integral part of our team and they have plenty of responsibility, gain real work experience, and make great connections for life.
Internship opportunities are available year round!
We provide volunteer internship opportunities year round for youth (ages 16-23) who are creative, responsible, and energetic and have solid communication (electronic, verbal, and written) and analytical thinking skills. Internship opportunities are available for undergraduate and graduate students, as well as those who have recently graduated. Responsibilities are continually changing and also depend on the intern’s interests, education, experience, and time commitment. Also, while interns are volunteers, when paid team positions do arise, we like to hire interns.
To apply, submit a cover letter, resume, and brief writing sample of no more than three pages to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Applications are accepted on a rolling basis. Learn more about all of our involvement opportunities here.
Want to know what it’s like to intern with The Ocean Project?
Here is what our World Ocean Day 2023 intern team had to say about their experiences:
Katherine Escalante, United States
I grew up in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, but I was based in Providence, Rhode Island while at The Ocean Project! I was excited to intern at The Ocean Project because of the organization’s global approach to ocean conservation policy and youth engagement. I had little to no background in ocean conservation work before I started my internship, yet I knew The Ocean Project was the right space to learn while doing! I am amazed by how many experiences I’ve been able to engage in during my time. In a professional sense, The Ocean Project allowed me to refine my skills while applying my interests to projects and connecting with partner organizations and youth from across the United States and around the globe.
During my internship, I was able to attend Capitol Hill Ocean Week and be part of the Sea Youth Rise Up student delegation. I participated in the White House Ocean Justice Roundtable and met with the Council of Environmental Quality to talk about ocean conservation from a youth perspective. After returning from D.C. I continued this work by hosting a global youth discussion to draft a comment letter for developing the White House Ocean Justice Strategy. When I wasn’t working on these projects, I got a great dose of climate hope by helping support our World Ocean Day outreach and event processing, where I got an idea of how many people are organizing incredible events in their communities. My time at The Ocean Project has given me a real sense of accomplishment, as I could work on exciting projects meaningfully. I was able to see the way my skills fit into space, and I feel so much more prepared for my future endeavors thanks to this experience.
Nicola Tsiolis, Australia
I’m a 21 year old marine scientist currently living in Victoria, Australia. I interned with The Ocean Project from February – July 2023 and had the most incredible experience. I was a member of the World Ocean Day Youth Advisory Council from 2019-2021 and after that experience, I knew that further down the track I wanted to reunite with the incredible team so I could once again contribute. My motivation to intern with The Ocean Project came from my deep admiration for their values, authenticity and how hard they work to create an incredible community of passionate “ocean people” who are creating positive change globally, for our blue planet.
The internship entailed a range of different outreach projects, revamping of resources, brainstorming around how to better engage youth and people across the World Ocean Day Youth Advisory Council alumni network, among many other creative and engaging projects. I learned a lot about using my strengths and working with and improving upon my weaknesses. This experience only helped grow my appreciation for working with a team of people who amplify and inspire each other through all tasks at hand. I’m so grateful for this opportunity and to have worked alongside the team at The Ocean Project. So much of what I’ve learned and gained I will take with me to all future experiences I will have.
Victoria Kurakata, Singapore
I’m originally from Seattle, Washington but currently live and study in Singapore. I had the opportunity to intern with The Ocean Project from March to August of 2023. What initially drew me to work with The Ocean Project was its dedication towards emphasizing youth perspectives, its collaborative, community-based approach, and my own desire to explore and learn more about ocean conservation.
During my internship, I administered the World Ocean Day blog, where I created a schedule for blog posts and helped draft and edit blog posts. I assisted with World Ocean Day event processing and reached out to event organizers. Near the end of my internship, I also helped support an outreach campaign dedicated to broadening and strengthening The Ocean Project’s global partner network.
While interning with The Ocean Project, I felt my voice was truly heard and acknowledged, and I was given plenty of opportunities to share my own thoughts, questions, and suggestions. I was fortunate enough to work alongside a team of thoughtful, genuine individuals, and I learnt so much from every member of the team. Regardless of where my future path takes me, my time at The Ocean Project has allowed me to develop meaningful skills that I can bring to future experiences and has given me an experience that I am immensely thankful for.
Jihyun Lee, South Korea
I’m based in Seoul, South Korea, and recently graduated from university. I joined this amazing group of passionate ocean lovers in May when I started my internship. For the past 3 years I have been working closely on marine conservation policies and youth engagement, with an emphasis on the United Nations’ priority to foster conservation and sustainable use of marine biological diversity of areas beyond national jurisdiction (the BBNJ Treaty), also widely known as the High Seas Treaty. Being able to share ideas, spread values and have many experiences with people around the world on these issues makes me believe that together we can protect our ocean!
Here at The Ocean Project and by focusing on World Ocean Day I was able to further engage in youth advocacy and work with other youth who are passionate about the ocean. World Ocean Day is the biggest ocean holiday we have, and The Ocean Project makes sure that it is celebrated meaningfully and amplifies events and work done around the world to ensure that those efforts are recognized. During my time as an Intern, my main project was managing the World Ocean Day Outreach Campaign which focused on network and advocacy growth, by producing and analyzing the data of 2022 and 2023 World Ocean Day events. One of the goals of the project was to create a stronger network for youth-focused organizations around the world. With the help of the other interns, we were able to identify events and countries that celebrated World Oceans Day but were previously not noticed or represented well. The process required a lot of patience, but it was touching and meaningful to see that year by year, more countries and people are engaging and recognizing the importance of protecting the ocean and acting upon it. I have also been supporting our colleagues by providing strategic links and recommendations for ongoing projects as well as identifying potential partnerships and sponsorships.
I will continue working with The Ocean Project, now as a Program Associate, and am immensely grateful and excited for the next steps of the journey! Coming up soon in mid-September, I will be leading a webinar with one of our honorable Youth Advisory Council Alumni, Lydia Rysavy, who was also a High Seas Youth Ambassador. I look forward to all the future projects we will work on together. This has been an incredible and memorable Internship, and I am positive it will be even more amazing as I continue my involvement here.
Want to learn more?
To learn more about The Ocean Project and World Ocean Day before you apply to volunteer or intern with us, visit our site for information about how we are supporting youth voices and subscribe to one or all of the following email lists:
- World Ocean Day: For organizations and interested individuals who want to celebrate our ocean with a special crescendo each 8 June and additional opportunities throughout the year. Approximately monthly emails from January-June and bi-monthly from July-December.
- Rising Blue Network Newsletter: For youth and youth-focused organizations, this monthly update includes events and opportunities to get more informed, engaged, and connected with other youth in your community and around the world.
- General email list for The Ocean Project. For anyone who would like a few updates each year. Everyone signed up for the other lists will get these brief quarterly updates as well.