INTERNSHIPS

WMEAC hosts interns from many colleges and universities. WMEAC internships include a one-time stipend, with all the benefits of hands-on experience in an environmental nonprofit. We have welcomed writers, those with social media marketing interests, biology and resource management majors, engineering  and sustainability majors and others. WMEAC interns leave with new skills, a portfolio of work, a letter of reference, and WMEAC’s appreciation. Typically our internships follow Spring (January – April), Summer (May-August), Fall (September – December) and Women and Environment (October-March) and final determination is decided by the Staff Mentor responsible for intern management.

Please defer to each intern position description for current availability.

Page last updated May 10, 2017.

Community Outreach (Not Available for Summer 2017)

Position summary
 The WMEAC Community Outreach Intern will support the Community Activism Director to engage diverse and strategic West Michigan constituencies in WMEAC’s continuum of environmental education, behavior change, and policy program. This internship will focus on supporting volunteer coordinating for a variety of WMEAC’s programs and events, event planning, and administrative support for our intern program, overall. It will also require support and development of WMEAC’s Inclusion and Development of Environmental Allies and Leaders (IDEAL) initiative to support WMEAC’s inclusion and diversity policies and goals. This internship is intended for a student or recent graduate interested in engaging a diverse group of community members and organizations in various environmental issues and non-profit administration.

Qualifications: The ideal candidate will have:

    • Strong verbal and written communication skills

    • Familiarity with Microsoft Word, Excel and Google Docs

    • Basic knowledge of common environmental issues

    • Ability to work with database management

    • Ability to speak to a group of members

    • Ability to conduct accurate research to support grant initiatives

    • Regular outreach on behalf of diversity initiative

    • Basic knowledge of Social media writing and development

Hours: A flexible schedule of 8‐20 hours per week, to be arranged by intern and staff.  A stipend is available for interns that commit to at least 150/hours. West Michigan Environmental Action Council is committed to the principle of equal employment opportunity for all employees and to providing employees with a work environment free of unlawful discrimination and harassment.

Crane Foundation Endowed Water Fellowship Opportunity (Position Filled for 2016/2017 Academic Year- Not Available for Application)

Title: Matilda M. and Harold D. Crane Foundation Endowed Water Fellow
Reports to: Water & Low Impact Development Programs Director
Hours: A flexible schedule of 20-25 hours per week, to be arranged by fellow and staff
Stipend: $3,000 for the 2015 – 2016 Academic Year (36 weeks)

Fellowship Summary

The Matilda M. and Harold D. Crane Foundation Endowed Water Fellow will serve as program support for WMEAC’s water research, education, behavior change, and action programs and initiatives. The primary role of the Water Fellow will be to participate in research and program development, and administrative activities to support WMEAC’s water programs, with the intended goal of providing learning and leadership opportunities that contribute to the professional development of the Water Fellow. Additional duties include serving the community by delivering presentations and interactive activities to interested student, faith based, and/or civic groups about water quality issues, with the goal of funneling new volunteers into opportunities for action for WMEAC’s water protection programs.

Overview of Fellowship Opportunity

Endowed by a charitable contribution from the Harold and Matilda Crane Foundation, the fellowship opportunity was established to ensure WMEAC develops leadership to engage students and citizens in watershed education and opportunities to act on behalf of our region’s water resources. This fellowship is intended to help develop a relationship between WMEAC and the fellow; commitment to the full academic year is key to the success of fellowship. The Crane Foundation Endowed Water Fellow will be a member of WMEAC’s Water Team, reporting to the Program Director and providing support as needed to other staff members.

Specific Duties

Duties will include analytical research and data collection, analysis and writing, attendance at community meetings and events, educational presentation development and delivery, and assistance with partner relationships and program development. Additional tasks and activities may be assigned as program needs develop and change over the course of the academic year.

Qualifications

 Current graduate or upper-level undergraduate student pursuing a degree in environmental science with a focus on aquatic sciences or water resources policy

 Knowledge and passion for regional watershed, water quality, and/or stormwater policy issues

 Excellent communication and writing skills, including public speaking, with a mastery of environmental science vocabulary

 Strong research skills, experience in collecting and analyzing qualitative and quantitative data

 Willingness to represent WMEAC and its Water and LID Programs and to intelligently discuss environmental issues with a variety of community and professional audiences

 Good organizational skills, self-starter; leadership experience a plus

 Commitment to protecting the environment

 Ability and willingness to commit to this position for the full academic year

 Knowledge and experiences with geographic information systems (GIS) software

 Proficiency in Microsoft Office (Word, Excel, PowerPoint and Publisher)

Directions to Apply

Applicants should send a cover letter, resume, and application to wmeac.org/internships. The position will remain open until filled. Please refrain from contacting WMEAC staff members for more information or updates about this position.

Fund Development (Position filled for Summer 2017)

WMEAC Fund Development and Events Intern

 Summer 2017

Position Summary:

This position is designed to offer an intern a substantive learning experience in the field of fund development with a focus on writing, database management, annual fund, membership development and events.

The WMEAC Fund Development and Events Intern will work closely with the Director of Development to implement fund development projects and tasks including campaign development and implementation, donor stewardship and donor data management. In addition, the intern will work closely with the Events Committee participating in the development, planning and implementation of WMEAC fundraising and program events. Tasks will include committee support, event planning and day of show event management.

This internship is intended for a student or recent graduate interested in acquiring experience within a professional setting and developing relationships within the West Michigan business and non-profit community. Intern stipend may be available.

Qualifications:

The ideal candidate will have

  • Integrity
  • Respect and appreciation for volunteers and colleagues
  • Experience coordinating events, either on campus of in the community
  • A basic understanding of fund development principles and processes
  • A basic understanding of community partnerships and sponsorship models
  • Strong organizational skills
  • Potential leadership capacities
  • Ability to keep meeting notes
  • Familiarity with Microsoft Word, Excel, and Google Docs
  • Familiarity with social media
  • Ability to obtain pricing quotes on event items i.e. centerpieces, linens, high-tops, chairs
  • Willingness to distribute fliers and posters to local hotspots
  • Ability to work occasional nights or weekends
  • Basic knowledge of common environmental issues

Hours:

A flexible schedule of 8-20 hours per week, to be arranged by intern and staff. Some of the work can be done independently if intern has access to necessary tools outside of the office.

Eco-Journalism and Blogging (Position filled for Summer 2017)

Eco-Journalism and Blogging Internship

Summer 2017

Position Summaries

This intern will research, write, and/or produce content on identified West Michigan environmental issues for print and online publication, as well as for radio and cable TV broadcast. Intern will support WMEAC’s various water quality and clean energy programs and projects. Attendance of WMEAC events is also expected, when the intern’s schedule permits. Intern will work out of the WMEAC office, but a flexible schedule of 15-20 hours per week will be arranged by intern and staff as much of the work can be done independently. Intern will receive a $500 stipend at the conclusion of the internship.

Qualifications

Must: The best candidate will be an upper-level university student, graduate, or emerging professional with education, experience, or training in the field of journalism or professional writing.

Ideal:

  • Documented journalism experience including published writing samples
  • Training or professional experience with social media
  • Experience doing interviews
  • Ability to meet deadlines
  • Familiarity with or ability to quickly learn digital content management systems
  • Familiarity with or ability to quickly learn basic photography and video skills
  • Basic knowledge of common environmental issues

Organization Background

West Michigan Environmental Action Council (WMEAC) is a nonprofit, 501(c)(3) organization working to protect and enhance West Michigan’s environment by translating the concerns of people into positive action. WMEAC has been delivering environmental education and advocacy to the West Michigan community for 48 years.

To Apply

Applicants should send a cover letter, resume, writing sample, and application to wmeac.org/internships. WMEAC is an equal opportunity employer. No one will be discriminated against on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, or any other characteristic protected by law.

Environmental Education (Position Filled for Summer 2017)

Environmental Education Internship Position Summary

This internship is geared toward undergraduate students pursuing a degree in natural sciences and/or science education.  This intern will support WMEAC’s educational programs including teach for the watershed, zero-waste, recycling, and renewable energy.

Responsibilities will be supporting program research and development, working with kids at multiple summer camps, developing lessons and teacher/parent/community resources, working with community partners and other tasks as needed.

Intern will have opportunities work within all of the Environmental Education and Outreach programs. Intern will work out of the WMEAC office, but several off-site hours and possible travel to WMEAC’s 8 counties should be expected. A flexible schedule of 15-20 hours per week is required with occasional night and weekends for WMEAC event support. Intern will receive a $500 stipend at the conclusion of the internship.

Qualifications

-Current undergraduate student pursuing a degree in natural sciences or science education.
-Enthusiasm and energy for working with students, teachers, and environmental professionals both in the classroom and outdoors.

-Knowledge of stream sampling techniques, water quality issues a plus
-Knowledge of recycling, composting, and waste materials issues a plus
-Strong communication and writing skills to knowledgeably and professionally represent WMEAC and its programs in a variety of audiences and ages.
-Must be able to successfully clear a background and felony records check.
-Must have own reliable transportation, and flexible availability
-Demonstrated commitment to protecting the environment and a willingness to try new tasks and outreach opportunities.
-Proficiency in Microsoft Office (Word, Excel, PowerPoint and Publisher) and Google Docs

Human Resources & Non-Profit Administration (Not Available for Summer 2017)

Position summary:

The WMEAC Human Resources & Non-Profit Administration Intern will support the Director of Operations in updating WMEAC internal policies and procedures. This will include support in the development and revision of the employee handbook, and policies on employee benefits & personal time off (PTO). It will also require support of WMEAC’s response to new federal laws on overtime. This internship is intended for a student or recent graduate interested in gaining a better understanding of the role that Human Resources can play in a non-profit setting, and be better prepared to work in the arena of human resources and the nonprofit sector.

Qualifications:

The ideal candidate will have:

 Strong verbal and written communication skills

 Familiarity with Microsoft Word, Excel and Google Docs

 Basic knowledge of common environmental issues

 Ability to work with database management

 Ability to interpret employment laws

 Ability to formulate compensation and wage structures

 Understanding of performance management of employees

 Basic knowledge of human resources management and benefits administration

 Experience with employee benefits, policies, and procedures implementation

Stipend and Hours:

Intern will be compensated with a $500 stipend at conclusion of contract agreement. A flexible schedule of 10-15 hours per week, to be arranged by intern and staff. Some work can be done independently. Interested persons should apply online at wmeac.org/internships and be prepared to submit a cover letter and resume.

Inclusion and Diversity (IDEAL) Scholar (Not Available for Summer 2017)

Scholar Summary
The primary goal of the Inclusion Scholar will influence internal policy, and work with the IDEAL Advisory Committee to analyze WMEAC’s capacity to update advocacy, program, and education focus based on the community’s self-identified environmental justice priorities. The IDEAL Scholar will participate in research, program development, policy, and administrative activities to support WMEAC’s IDEAL initiative, with the intended goal of providing learning and leadership opportunities that contribute to the professional development of the IDEAL Scholar.

Overview of Scholarship
The Scholar position will require support and development of WMEAC’s Inclusion and Development of Environmental Allies and Leaders (IDEAL) initiative. This Scholar position is intended for a student or recent graduate interested in analyzing and researching findings based a three-month community engagement project around various environmental issues facing our region. The Inclusion Scholar is intended for a traditionally underrepresented student with a passion for social change and/or environmental leadership.  The student will engage in a paid Scholar position with the West Michigan Environmental Council (WMEAC) for an academic semester or an appropriate time frame based upon the Scholar’s academic year. The student will assist WMEAC in the expansion of its environmental justice and activism scope in the West Michigan area.  Strong verbal and written communication skills are necessary. Scholar applicant must have a passion for social and environmental justice and basic knowledge of the West Michigan region.

Personal Attributes & Qualifications

    • Current undergraduate or graduate traditionally underrepresented student with knowledge and/or passion for social justice and community organizing

    • Excellent written and communication skills

    • Understanding and interest in how diversity interacts with broader community

    • Epitomizes cultural competency

    • Ability to conduct accurate research to support grant initiatives

Hours  A flexible schedule of 10-20 hours per week, to be arranged by Scholar and staff. Scholar will receive a $500 stipend at the conclusion of the internship. West Michigan Environmental Action Council is committed to the principle of equal employment opportunity for all employees and to providing employees with a work environment free of unlawful discrimination and harassment.

Recycling (Position filled for Summer 2017)

Recycling Internship

Position Summary

West Michigan Environmental Action Council (WMEAC) and the Kent County Department of Public Works (KCDPW) are offering a joint internship opportunity for an individual to support WMEAC’s recycling efforts in coordination with KCDPW. Intern will work 15-20 hours per week, at times to be arranged by intern and staff at WMEAC and Kent County. Intern will receive a $500 stipend at the conclusion of the internship.

WMEAC is seeking an intern to support strategies to improve participation and product quality for recycling in Grand Rapids and Kent County. The intern will support event outreach, volunteer coordination, stakeholder process to maximize materials management for weekly Reimagine Craft Days at the Kent County Recycling Center, several summer outreach events, residential recycling, and other stakeholder identified objectives.

Intern will be assisting with community outreach, volunteer coordination, public speaking, research, data management and analysis. Additional duties include logistical support for WMEAC programming including coordinating stakeholders and other projects as assigned. Intern will work out of Grand Rapids and Kent County offices to work with project partners, as well as the WMEAC office. Occasional evenings and weekends should be expected.

Qualifications:

-Knowledge of recycling, composting, and waste materials issues.
-Strong communication and writing skills to knowledgeably and professionally represent WMEAC and its programs in a variety of audiences and ages.
-Must be able to successfully clear a background and felony records check.
-Must have own reliable transportation, and flexible availability.
-Demonstrated commitment to protecting the environment and a willingness to try new tasks and outreach opportunities.
-Proficiency in Microsoft Office (Word, Excel, PowerPoint and Publisher) and Google Docs.

West Michigan Environmental Action Council is committed to the principle of equal employment opportunity for all employees and to providing employees with a work environment free of unlawful discrimination and harassment.

Water and LID (Not Available for Summer 2017)

Position Summaries
This intern will support WMEAC’s stormwater and water quality programs. Responsibilities will be divided between project/policy management and community outreach/program support. Intern will have opportunties to work on WMEAC projects such as Lower Grand River Water Trail Assessment and Improvement Plan for Ottawa County and Stormwater Green Infrastructure Ecosystem Services Calculator; WMEAC programs, including rain barrels, Raingardens.org, and the native plant nursery; community meetings and events related to water quality, stormwater management, and LID issues in West Michigan; and other projects as assigned. Intern will work out of the WMEAC office, but frequent evening, weekend, and off-site hours should be expected. A flexible schedule of 10-15 hours per week will be expected, to be arranged by intern and staff. Intern will receive a $500 stipend at the conclusion of the internship.

General Qualifications

    • Current undergraduate or graduate student pursuing a degree in natural science, environmental science, or public policy

    • Knowledge of watershed, water quality, and stormwater policy issues

    • Strong organizational skills, self-starter; leadership experience a plus

    • Strong communication and writing skills, including public speaking, with a mastery of environmental science vocabulary

    • Strong research and data analysis skills

    • Experience utilizing geographic information systems (GIS) software a plus

    • Ability to work with a variety of community partners and community leaders in a professional manner

    • Demonstrated commitment to protecting the environment

    • Proficiency in Microsoft Office (Word, Excel, PowerPoint and Publisher) and Google Drive

Organization Background
West Michigan Environmental Action Council (WMEAC) is a nonprofit, 501(c)(3) organization working to protect and enhance West Michigan’s environment by translating the concerns of people into positive action. WMEAC has been delivering environmental education and advocacy to the West Michigan community for 48 years.

To Apply
Applicants should submit a cover letter, resume, and application at wmeac.org/internships. WMEAC is an equal opportunity employer. No one will be discriminated against on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, or any other characteristic protected by law.

Water Programs Event Planning (Not Available for Summer 2017)

Position Summary
This intern will support WMEAC’s stormwater/water quality and environmental education programs, primarily planning and coordination of two events:

    • Organization and planning of the 13th Annual Mayors’ Grand River Cleanup, which is scheduled for September 10, 2016. Working closely with the Water Programs Outreach Coordinator, WMEAC’s Development Director, and the Grand Rapids-based Cleanup Planning Committee, this intern will guide the planning and implementation of this cleanup event, including planning committee support, fund development assistance, cleanup site selection, volunteer recruitment, event promotion, and day-of-cleanup event management.

    • Organization and planning support for the 3rd Annual River City Water Festival. The water festival is a grant deliverable for WMEAC’s Teach for the Watershed (T4W) Program. This two-day event will be held again at the Grand Rapids Public Museum. It will bring together water professionals and organizations that can introduce K-12 students to information, fun activities and events, and career paths about our water and local waterways. Responsibilities will include planning committee support, fund development and sponsorship assistance, event promotion, volunteer coordination, and day-of-show event management.

This internship is intended for a student or recent graduate interested in acquiring experience within a professional setting and developing relationships within the West Michigan business and nonprofit communities. A flexible schedule of 10-20 hours per week will be expected from mid-June through September 2016, to be arranged by intern and staff, including some evenings. Intern will receive a $500 stipend at the conclusion of the internship.

Qualifications The ideal candidate will have

    • Integrity

    • Respect and appreciation for volunteers and colleagues

    • Experience coordinating an event, either on campus or in the community

    • Strong organizational skills

    • Public speaking skills

    • Potential leadership capacities

    • Ability to keep meeting notes

    • Familiarity with Microsoft Word, Excel, and Google Drive

    • Familiarity with social media

    • Ability to obtain pricing quotes on event items e.g. centerpieces, linens, high-tops, chairs

    • Willingness to distribute fliers and posters to local hotspots

Water Programs Outreach Intern (APPLY NOW: Open for Summer 2017)

Position Summary
The WMEAC Outreach Intern will assist in coordinating and staffing WMEAC’s Rain Barrel Program as well as assist in volunteer maintenance and program development for WMEAC’s Native Plant Nursery. Working closely with the Water Programs Outreach Coordinator, this intern will participate in rain barrel prep, transport and procurement; delivery of stormwater education events, including rain barrel workshops; nursery planting, weeding, and maintenance; and volunteer coordination to support these activities. The Outreach Intern will gain experience in volunteer coordination, public speaking, and event planning. This internship is intended for a student or recent graduate interested in acquiring experience in the field and within a professional setting.

Qualifications The ideal candidate will have

    • Integrity

    • Ability to manage time wisely; be reliable

    • Ability to work independently

    • Enthusiasm for working with people

    • Experience coordinating an event or project

    • Knowledge of West Michigan native plants or gardening

    • Ability to flexibly transition between tasks

    • Strong organizational skills

    • Basic knowledge of environmental issues

    • Ability and commitment to working nights and weekends

    • Ability to safely operate power tools

Hours and Compensation
Intern is expected to keep a flexible schedule of 10-20 hours per week from June – September 2016 to be arranged by intern and staff. Intern will receive a $500 stipend at the conclusion of the internship.

Organization Background
WMEAC (West Michigan Environmental Action Council) is a nonprofit membership organization founded in 1968 that has been active in issues ranging from banning DDT, to lake, water, and dunes preservation, to our modern day challenge of global problems that threaten sustainability. To Apply Interested persons should submit a resume, cover letter, and application online at www.wmeac.org/internships.  West Michigan Environmental Action Council is committed to the principle of equal employment opportunity for all employees and to providing employees with a work environment free of unlawful discrimination and harassment.

Women and Environment Event Intern (Not Available for Summer 2017)

Position summary:

The WMEAC Women & Environment Intern will support the Community Activism Manager and Women & Environment Planning Committee to assist in organizing and implementing the Women and Environment Symposium in February of 2018. Intern goals will also include implementing strategy to engage diverse and strategic West Michigan constituencies in WMEAC’s continuum of environmental education, behavior change, and policy program.  WMEAC W&E intern includes the role to act as the liaison with Grand Valley State University’s Women’s Center and WMEAC. This internship is intended for a student or recent graduate interested in acquiring experience within a professional setting and developing relationships within the West Michigan business and non-profit community.

Intern will receive a $500 stipend at conclusion of internship.

Qualifications:

The ideal candidate will have

  • Strong organizational skills
  • A basic understanding of community partnerships and sponsorship models
  • Strong verbal and written communication skills
  • Familiarity with Microsoft Word, Excel and Google Docs
  • Basic knowledge of common environmental issues
  • Ability to work with database management
  • Ability to speak to a group of members
  • Ability to conduct accurate research to support grant initiatives
  • Basic knowledge of Social media writing and development
  • Respect and appreciation for volunteers and colleagues

Hours:

A flexible schedule of 10-15 hours per week, to be arranged by intern and staff.  Some work can be done independently.  Intern needs to be employed from October through March due to the date of the event.