Internship Program

Pacific Whale Foundation is a non-profit organization dedicated to protecting whales and other marine wildlife through research, education and conservation. Our researchers have studied whales and dolphins throughout the Pacific for over 38 years and currently conduct or support projects in Hawaii, Australia, Ecuador and Chile. A research internship with Pacific Whale Foundation is an excellent opportunity to gain experience in marine mammal research.

Commitment & Responsibilities

We seek performance-driven, dedicated individuals for long-term internships based in Maui, Hawaii. Interns must be available on a full-time basis, including weekends as needed. This internship is primarily office-based and focuses on photo-identification cataloging. Interns assist research staff with processing and analyzing data collected for mysticete (humpback whale) and odontocete (toothed whale and dolphin) studies and related projects.

In the office you will learn: how to input and organize data, how to quality control data, how to photographically identify dolphins and whales, how to use database software, and learn about the general biology and ecology of Hawaii’s marine wildlife.

In the field you will learn: how to scan for and identify whales and dolphins, how to collect photo-ID data, how to collect underwater footage, and how to make behavioral observations of wild animals. Field days can range from 8-12 hours in length and occur approximately 1-2 times per week. Interns must be able to spend many hours on the water and on shore in sometimes extreme weather conditions, including high temperatures and carrying heavy loads of equipment.