Marine Science

Marine Science

Internships & Careers

Enhancing the comprehensive academic program are the many coastal businesses, research centers and environmental organizations in the Tampa Bay area that provide unique internship and employment opportunities. Utilizing an internship is a great way to discover a career path by getting some real world experience before graduation.

A marine science degree offers a wide range of career opportunities. Graduates from the marine science program have been successful in gaining admission to graduate schools and in obtaining interesting and fulfilling jobs. Our graduates have been able to secure jobs in research laboratories, government agencies, private consulting firms, industry, public aquaria, and educational institutions from secondary to collegiate levels.

To discover some of the unique opportunities available to students in regards to internships, careers, graduate school and study abroad, please utilize the tabs below for more information.

Internship Opportunities

Pier Aquarium Volunteer Internships

Internships are available in PR/Marketing for students interested in learning the skills that would make a student more marketable in the very competitive field of paid internships and/or full-time employment after graduation. This position at The Pier Aquarium is non-paid, but the intern will play an integral part in the PR/marketing function. You will work one-on-one with a seasoned, award winning, accredited PR professional.

School program assistant 9:30am-12:30pm (Monday-Friday; only available when programs are scheduled). Assist Marine Education Staff with field trip programs for young students Volunteer is required to help with seine netting, specimen collecting, and cleaning materials after program.

Touch Tank Guide: 1-4pm (Sunday-Saturday)

Aquarium Husbandry Internships
1) Aquaculture Program- 1 opening: assist in the expansion and maintenance of The Pier Aquarium's aquaculture program.
include catsharks, seahorses, and clownfish.
2) Coral Program- 1 opening: assist in the maintenance of The Pier Aquarium's live coral collection, from water quality to propagation.

Egmont Key Internships

The Egmont Key NWR is accepting applications for the Student Temporary Employment Program.

The U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service mission is the protection, conservation and enhancement of fish, wildlife, and their habitats. Our Student Temporary Employment Program (STEP) introduces talented students to the advantages and challenges of working for the Service. It provides opportunities for students to gain valuable work experience that supports the occupational fields of Wildlife Refuge Management, Wildlife Biology, Forestry, Environmental Education and Natural Resources (Outdoor Recreation). Duties may include assisting with fish and wildlife population surveys, timber cruising, vegetation monitoring, bird banding, conducting environmental education programs, and assisting with daily management of national wildlife refuges and hatcheries.

Pay Scale: Entry level at GS-1 to GS-3 ($ 9.57/hour - $ 11.74/hour). Salary will vary depending on the location of the position. Pay is based on the duties to be performed and the qualifications of the student.

Benefits: Four hours of vacation time (annual leave) and four hours of sick leave every two weeks; STEP appointees are not eligible for health or life insurance or other benefits are provided.

Time Frames and Location: Specific to refuge needs in FY-2010 (April 5, 2010- August 1, 2010). Applicants may work full or part-time between the above mentioned months.

Eligibility Requirements: Applicants must be U.S. citizens and at least age 18 years old. Applicants must be accepted for enrollment, or enrolled, as a degree-seeking student at an accredited technical or vocational school, or 2 or 4 year college or university and have a 2.0 GPA. If the student is enrolled, they must be taking at least a half-time course load as defined by the school.

How to Apply:

  • Resume describing past/present school and work experiences.
  • College students should submit a copy of his/her most recent official transcript, and an official letter of good standing from the registrar's office.
  • High School Graduates must submit a copy of the acceptance letter for the upcoming school year to attend an accredited technical or vocational school, or college or university.
  • Declaration for Federal Employment (OF 306)
  • DI-1935 Dept. of Interior Applicant Background Survey (Used for data collection and statistical purposes only)

Mail to: Michael Lusk, Refuge Manager
Crystal River NWR Complex
1502 South East Kings Bay Dr
Crystal River, FL 34429

All required information must be received by March 5, 2010

Galbraith Fellowship

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In 1994, John and Rosemary Galbraith started an endowment for a fellowship that supports one Eckerd student, either rising Junior(current Sophomore) or Senior (current Junior), to participate in a research project at the Bermuda Institute of Ocean Sciences (BIOS), formerly the Bermuda Biological Station for Research (BBSR) over the summer. The internship pays travel to Bermuda and all expenses associated with a 10-week stay at the Bermuda Institute for Ocean Science (BIOS), plus a stipend of about $2000.00.

Applicants should submit a brief statement of research interests, transcripts, one letter of recommendation from a faculty member (other than Brooks, Szelistowski or Meylan) and a C.V. to Professor Meylan before 8 March 2010. The final selection is made by BIOS faculty and will depend in part on matching interests of the intern with the interests of faculty at BIOS. Therefore it will be necessary for applicants to familiarize themselves with the research programs of the BIOS faculty by using the BIOS website. Students in all disciplines are encouraged to apply. This fellowship is open only to Eckerd students but its existence does not exclude Eckerd students from consideration for other BIOS internship programs.

Since 1994, the recipients have been: 1994-Christy Brush, 1995-Bryan Bishop, 1996-Jill Peloquin, 1997-Linda Roy, 1998-Angela Damery, 1999-Matt Stone, 2000-Liz Jablonski, 2001-Theresa Byrnes, 2002-Bradley Klement, 2003-Nicole Allard, 2004-Marnin Wolfe, 2005-Kimberly Zeeh, 2006-Jessie Drechsel, 2007-Dawn Formica, 2008-Kerrie Collins

Summer Student Research Assistants Needed

University of South Florida College of Marine Science

History of Climate Change, Marine Geochemistry, Ecological Studies, Paleoceanography, Biogeochemistry

Researchers at the College of Marine Science at the University of South Florida and Eckerd College seek the help of Eckerd College students during the summer of 2009. We are engaged in a variety of research projects related to climate change, biogeochemistry, anthropogenic impact assessments, ecological studies, paleoceanography, and marine geochemistry.

Target regions include the Gulf of Mexico, Florida lakes, the Florida Keys, the Everglades, Puerto Rico, and Tampa Bay. Ability and interest in working in the field, and participating in research cruises is important for many projects.

No experience is required - we will train in all techniques - but previous laboratory experience is helpful. Work will be conducted in newly renovated laboratories in the College of Marine Science at USF under the direct supervision of Drs. David Hastings, Ben Flower, Bob Byrne, Mya Breitbart or David Hollander.

Interested students should submit an application by March 5, 2010 to Professor David Hastings ( or x7884) in Marine Science. Please include:

  • a one to two page cover letter describing your scientific interests and any previous laboratory experience
  • your resume
  • Eckerd College transcript (unofficial is OK)
  • the name of at least one reference who knows you well at Eckerd.

Summer salary is $2,500 and includes housing at Eckerd College.

U.S.G.S. Center for Coastal and Watershed Studies

The U.S. Geological Survey Center for Coastal and Watershed Studies in St. Petersburg sponsors one year-round Fellowship and at least three summer internships for Eckerd College students. Scientists at the Center investigate geological processes related to societal problems arising in coastal and marine environments including natural hazards, resources and environmental change. At present the Center employs approximately 50 research and support personnel. Projects include investigations of:

  • evolution of coastlines, coastal landforms and coral reefs
  • sediment dynamics of lagoons and estuaries
  • waves, currents and sediment transport
  • remote sensing by aircraft and satellites to study coastal processes
  • fossil plants and animals to aid in the study of past climates
  • coastal hazards such as hurricanes and coastal flooding
  • computer modeling and mapping using GIS and related software
  • A variety of Biological studies

Interested students should submit 3 copies of: 1) a 1-2 page statement of interest; 2) resume; 3) transcripts (need not be official); and, 4) at least one letter of recommendation from an Eckerd College faculty member. Students applying for the positions should submit the appropriate materials to Professor Gregg Brooks by March 13, 2009. Statement of interest should include a summary of skills (computer, SCUBA, etc...) and qualifications that may be relevant. Stipends for the year round positions will be $4,000 and require 10 hours/week during the school year and 40 hours/week during the summer. Stipends for the summer positions will be $2,500 and will require the equivalent of 40 hours/week for 10 weeks. Both internships will include housing during the summer at Eckerd College. Transportation will be helpful but not absolutely required.

Deadline: March 5, 2010

Estuarine and Coastal Marine Sciences - Duke University

The National Science Foundation funded REU program will take place at the Duke Marine Lab located on Pivers Island in coastal Carteret County of North Carolina. Pivers Island is part of the Newport River estuary and is about 2 km from the ocean via the Beaufort Inlet. Coastal and estuarine invertebrate species and a variety of habitats (marshes, mudflats, sand flats, beaches, creeks, channels and coastal ocean) are readily available for research.

Nine students will participate in a 10 week semi-independent research program with faculty mentors in the following general areas:

  • Marine sensory physiology, ecology and behavior
  • Environmental toxicology
  • Marine genetics
  • Coastal and estuarine processes
Information, Dates, Eligibility, and How to Apply

Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) Opportunities

REU is a program sponsored by the National Science Foundation. Individual researchers apply for funds to support a group of undergraduates to conduct research over the summer. Students receive stipends, and, in some cases, assistance with housing and travel. Opportunities vary from year to year and are available in all areas of science. Deadlines are in individual project announcements.

More information

Incorporated Research Institutions in Seismology Internships

This NSF funded research experience for undergraduates (REU) provides interns with the opportunity to:

  • conduct exciting research with state of the art geophysical data and leading researchers at IRIS institutions,
  • develop an understanding of scientific inquiry, including designing and conducting scientific investigations,defending scientific arguments, and preparing publications,
  • gather, manage, and convey information, using various skills, strategies, resources, and
  • learn, use, and evaluate technologies for the collection and study of geophysical data.
This paid experience features a week-long orientation program, the use of a variety of virtual communication technologies to help you stay connected with other interns during your 8 to 10 week research placement, and an opportunity to present your research at a scientific meeting.

More information

Association for Women Geoscientists Student Opportunities

The Association for Women Geoscientists is an international organization devoted to enhancing the quality and level of participation of women in geosciences and to introduce girls and young women to geoscience careers. Membership is open to anyone who supports AWG's goals.

Career, Internship, Fellowships, and Grant Listings

Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute (MBARI) Internships

With state-of-the-art facilities and equipment that includes research vessels, remotely operated vehicles (ROVs), and autonomous underwater vehicles (AUVs) to explore the deep ocean, MBARI offers teachers and students unique opportunities to be involved in advanced research and development projects. The program is open to undergraduate and graduate students and educators.

The focus of the MBARI internship is on the intern's professional development—learning research techniques and improving communication and collaboration skills. Each intern will have an MBARI mentor who will supervise a specific project. Interns will also serve as peer-mentors to other interns.

More information

Keck Geology Consortium

Each summer, the schools in the Keck Geology Consortium offer projects for undergraduate research. Each project lasts for five weeks during the summer. Students receive a generous stipend, travel expenses, room, and board. Seniors are required to complete at least one semester of work on the project when they return to their home institution. All students attend the Keck Symposium in the spring semester to report the results of their studies. This is an extremely competitive program; only a few students from outside of the symposium are selected each year to participate. One Eckerd student completed a Keck project in the summer of 2000; she thought it was an incredible experience. Research projects cover a wide range of subjects depending on the year, including hydrology, paleontology, petrology, glaciology, sedimentology, and seismology

More information

GeoCorps America

GeoCorps America is a program of the Geological Society of America , in partnership with the U.S. Forest Service, the Bureau of Land Management, and the National Park Service.

The program offers paid short-term geoscience positions in some of the most beautiful natural areas in the world. Read the experiences of those who have participated in the past.

GeoCorps project areas include geology, hydrology, paleontology, mapping and GIS, minerals, soils, glaciology, geo-hazards, karst, education, interpretation, and more.

GeoCorps positions are divided into three major categories: Standard "GeoCorps America" positions, "GeoCorps Guest Scientist" positions, and "GeoCorps Diversity Internships" (which include the "GeoCorps American Indian Internships" sub-category).

More information

For updated information on internship and fellowship opportunities in marine science, please check the listings posted at Career Services.

Career Exploration

A marine science degree offers a wide range of career opportunities. Graduates from the marine science program at EckerdCollege have been successful in gaining admission to graduate schools and in obtaining interesting and fulfilling jobs. Our graduates have been able to secure jobs in research laboratories, government agencies, private consulting firms, industry, public aquaria, and educational institutions from secondary to collegiate levels.

Some careers may be entered with a B.S. degree and enhanced by an internship experience. Some careers require graduate study in an area of specialization. Listed below are careers in marine science that exist for different experience levels and abilities. Salaries and degree of responsibility typically increase with increased training, experience, and education. Here are some examples:

With a B.S. Marine Science:

  • Laboratory Research Technician or Research Assistant
  • Park Naturalist or Park Ranger
  • Secondary School Teacher or Teaching Assistant
  • Field Crew Member or Field Research Technician
  • Volunteer Coordinator
  • Aquarium Technician
  • Aquaculture Technician
  • Environmental Consultant
  • Wildlife Specialist
  • Outreach Educator
  • Marine Mammal Trainer
  • Artist (e.g. animal sculpture, paintings)
  • Marine Patrol, Law Enforcement
  • Industry (e.g. oil companies)

With a M.S. (Master of Science):

  • Research Assistant
  • Environmental Consultant
  • Environmental Planner or Land Use Manager
  • Environmental Analyst
  • Natural Resource Manager
  • Laboratory Manager or Research Coordinator
  • Field Biologist/Geologist
  • Lecturer
  • Professor at some two-year colleges
  • Scientific Writer
  • Scientific Illustrator
  • Industry (e.g. petroleum exploration)

With Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.):

  • Post Doctoral Associate
  • College or University Professor
  • Lecturer
  • Senior Environmental Consultant
  • Research Administrator
  • Research Associate/Scientist
  • Natural Resource Manager or Director
  • Museum Curator
  • Superintendent of Public Schools
  • Director of Curriculum and Instruction
  • Scientific Journal Editor
  • Industry (e.g. Research Scientist)

For more information on careers in marine science, please see the following resources:

American Society of Limnology and Oceanography and Centers for Ocean Sciences Education Excellence provide general information on careers in the Aquatic Sciences, including employment opportunities, earnings, job outlook, and working conditions.

Scripps Institute of Oceanography, University of California, San Diego, provides a list of web resources on careers in oceanography, marine science, and marine biology.

Office of Naval Research provides general information on oceanography careers

Graduate School

The marine science program offers rigorous preparation for graduate study in the sciences, and over half of our graduates enroll in graduate programs either immediately after graduation or after working in the field for one to several years. Eckerd’s solid preparation has enabled students to not only enter Master’s and Ph.D. programs in marine science and oceanography, but also in fields as diverse as biology, chemistry, geology, meteorology, toxicology, biomedical science, environmental science, marine policy and law. Still other students opt for professional schools and earn M.D., D.V.M. and D.D.S. degrees.


Here is a partial listing of graduate institutions that our recent graduates have attended:

  • CaliforniaStateUniversity, Long Beach
  • College of Charleston
  • Cornell University
  • Duke University
  • Florida International University
  • Florida State University
  • John Hopkins University
  • Harvard University
  • NOVA Southeastern
  • Oregon State University
  • Pennsylvania State University
  • Rice University
  • Rutgers University
  • Scripps Institute, University of California, San Diego
  • SUNY Stony Brook
  • Texas A+M
  • University of California, Davis
  • University of California, Santa Barbara
  • University of California, Santa Cruz
  • University of Chicago
  • University of Colorado
  • University of Florida
  • University of Hawaii
  • University of Miami
  • University of Minnesota
  • University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill
  • University of North Carolina, Wilmington
  • University of Rhode Island
  • University of SouthFlorida
  • University of Washington
  • University of Wisconsin
  • Virginia Institute of Marine Science
  • WashingtonStateUniversity
  • Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute

Study Abroad

Eckerd’s strong commitment to international education includes an International Education Office, dedicated to promoting and managing our programs abroad. Students in marine science have a wide range of opportunities to explore the sciences both internationally and at US sites outside the TampaBay area.

Most students go abroad through one of our winter term or spring-into-summer courses. Others study a full semester in a foreign university or participate in formal marine science exchange programs Eckerd has established at Plymouth and Aberdeen Universities (UK) or through Marine Science Exchange, an Eckerd-initiated joint program with the University of the Canary Islands (Spain), the University of Liege (Belgium), and La RochelleUniversity (France). We are also currently developing programs in China, Australia, and Latin America.

Some faculty conduct research abroad and include Eckerd students as assistants in the Bahamas, the US Virgin Islands, Costa Rica, and Panama. Furthermore, the College’s BIOS Galbraith Scholarship provides full travel, housing, and a stipend to send an Eckerd student each summer to conduct research with a resident scientist at Bermuda Institute for Ocean Sciences. EckerdCollege is also a member of the Sea Education Association, Inc., where students receive land-based instruction in oceanography, nautical science, and maritime affairs, followed by a 6-week research cruise.

Recent off-campus offerings include:

Winter Terms

Florida Keys/Everglades


Costa Rica

Semester Abroad

Canary Islands
Sea Semester
United Kingdom

Student Research