Watershed Assessment Intern

The Nature Conservancy (TNC)
Minneapolis, MN, United States
Position Type: 
Organization Type: 
NGO/Civil Society
Experience Level: 
Not Specified


Please note: this job post has expired! To the best of our knowledge, this job is no longer available and this page remains here for archival purposes only.

Founded in 1951, the Nature Conservancy is a global conservation organization dedicated to conserving the lands and waters on which all life depends. Guided by science, we create innovative, on-the-ground solutions to our world's toughest challenges so that nature and people can thrive together. We are tackling climate change, conserving lands, waters and oceans at unprecedented scale, providing food and water sustainably and helping make cities more sustainable.  One of our core values is our commitment to diversity. Therefore, we strive for a globally diverse and culturally competent workforce. Working in 72 countries, including all 50 United States, we use a collaborative approach that engages local communities, governments, the private sector, and other partners. To learn more, visit www.nature.org or follow @nature_press on Twitter.

The Nature Conservancy offers competitive compensation, 401k or savings-plan matching for eligible employees, excellent benefits, flexible work policies and a collaborative work environment. We also provide professional development opportunities and promote from within. As a result, you will find a culture that supports and inspires conservation achievement and personal development, both within the workplace and beyond.




The Watershed Assessment Intern will participate in an internship experience that provides meaningful and relevant experience in the field of conservation and water resources management. The program will encourage the Watershed Assessment Intern to infuse energy and fresh insight to our teams. The Watershed Assessment Intern will help TNC accomplish freshwater conservation planning, management and outreach activities. They will receive exposure to conservation strategy at higher levels and direct, hands-on experience in a variety of planning and analysis activities done by the Freshwater Team of the Minnesota-North Dakota-South Dakota Chapter of TNC. This position will start around May 13, 2019 and require 30 to 40 hours per week during the summer. The position ends August 30, 2019. The main office location is in the Downtown East neighborhood of Minneapolis at 1101 West River Parkway, Suite 200.  Much of the work will be done at a variety of locations around the region, therefore the willingness and ability to travel is required. A valid driver’s license is required. Reliable transportation is preferred. Work schedule will typically be Monday-Friday 9:00 am -5:00 pm with occasional weekend and evening events.




The Watershed Assessment Intern will gain work experience with watershed management, restoration and conservation practices, outreach, and the planning and analysis of these activities.  They will add capacity to the Conservancy’s Freshwater Team and contribute their abilities and insight to watershed assessment, planning and analysis activities. This position will work under the direction of multiple TNC Freshwater Team staff with a focus on the Upper Mississippi River basin.




GIS and desktop studies / analysis

  • Map and assess natural resources and conservation information to support TNC decision making in conservation and restoration projects related to water quality
  • Carry out pre-defined analysis for prioritization of restoration and conservation activities

Education and outreach

  • Develop handouts, fact sheets and other outreach materials focused on freshwater for a variety of audiences
  • Attend occasional outreach events to promote the importance of clean water and talk about the work being done by TNC’s Freshwater Team

Field-based data collection and survey

  • Assist in field collection of hydrologic data from monitoring wells and water quality sampling at various TNC sites
  • Assist in soil studies related to soil health, organic matter, carbon and other soil properties in conservation and/or agricultural BMP studies
  • Carry out data collection to support TNC restoration and management projects in the Upper Mississippi River basin, in the Driftless Area of Southeast Minnesota, in western South Dakota and/or other projects within the Chapter’s 3-state territory

Data entry, organization and analysis

  • Enter data collected from field-based monitoring and research
  • Do quality-control on data and organize summary statistics on hydrological, water quality and ecological data
  • Assess and synthesize data into graphs, tables and/or schematics for use in chapter reports, programs and/or meetings

Other possible activities

  • Participate in donor or volunteer events and activities such as canoe trips or tree plantings
  • May work in variable weather conditions, at remote locations, in hazardous terrain and under physically demanding circumstances.




We are seeking upper level undergraduate students, recent graduates, or graduate students who are looking to gain hands-on experience in freshwater conservation and restoration. Individuals who are highly organized and proactive, with a passion for conservation and restoration work in aquatic ecosystems are encouraged to apply. All people applying for this position must have the following minimum qualifications.  

  • Have or be pursuing a degree in natural resources, conservation biology, hydrology, botany, soil science or related environmental science or engineering fields
  • Experience with ArcGIS software
  • Experience with Microsoft Office suite
  • Experience working with scientific data with strong accountability and commitment to accuracy
  • Experience working in the outdoors under adverse weather conditions


  • High proficiency in ArcGIS software
  • Experience managing and prioritizing tasks from multiple sources
  • Experience in field data collection of hydrologic or water quality data
  • Experience working with hydrologic data sets and/or doing basic statistics
  • Experience with topographic surveys for stream assessment and hydrologic monitoring
  • Experience working independently or with little supervision
  • Experience creating outreach and/or education materials
  • Experience conducting community outreach
  • Strong oral and written communication skills
  • Ability to identify common plants of the upper Midwest




This position requires a valid driver's license and compliance with the Conservancy's Auto Safety Program. Employees may not drive Conservancy-owned/leased vehicles, rental cars, or personal vehicles on behalf of the Conservancy if considered "high risk drivers." Please see further details in the Auto Safety Program document available at www.nature.org/careers.
Employment in this position will be contingent upon completion of a Vehicle Use Agreement, which may include a review of the prospective employee's motor vehicle record.




To apply to position number 47444, submit resume (required) and cover letter separately using the upload buttons. All applications must be submitted in the system prior to 11:59 p.m. Eastern Time on April 2, 2019.
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