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ODFW Fish Student Internship Program

Unfortunately, due to several unanticipated expenses there will be no funding available to offer any paid 2022 Fish Division internships. If you have an interest in wildlife, please check the Wildlife Division Internships for opportunities.  If you are able to commit to an unpaid position, please check in with the ODFW Volunteer Program for information.

The ODFW fisheries intern program provides valuable training experiences to college students entering the field of fisheries management, while assisting with a variety of district field activities. Interns assist district fisheries biologists and research program staff performing daily management activities such as population surveys, habitat work, and responding to public inquiries. Interns may also participate in a fisheries research program or conservation strategy implementation; occasionally conducting independent duties. Interns gain a wide variety of experiences representing the workload of an ODFW Fish District.

Most internships occur during the summer quarter, which in Oregon is mid-June to mid-September. However, depending on need and the student’s availability, internships can start as early as May. Internships are 400 hours (10 weeks or 2.3 months) in duration.The position is classified as a Student Professional/Technical Worker. In some cases, housing is provided.

The Fish District offices generally start recruiting in February with a deadline for applications usually toward the end of March or April; a cover letter and resume is required for application. Based on intern feedback from last year, the experience has been overwhelmingly positive; likewise ODFW staff have expressed great satisfaction with the program and assistance they have received from the interns.

The ODFW contact for the fisheries internship program is Michele Weaver, ESA Program Specialist, 503.947.6254,

Examples of Internship Duties

Depending on the location of internship, typical job duties will vary. Below are some examples of duties taken from previous internship descriptions.

  • Charleston office - ODFW recently established the Coquille Valley Wildlife Area, and the Fish District is in the process of conducting pre- and post-restoration monitoring as an evaluation of a tidal wetland restoration projects on the property.
    • Estuary seining;
    • Pre-restoration fish/habitat monitoring on Winter Lake (Coquille Valley);
    • Juvenile steelhead surveys (snorkel and/or backpack e-fish);
    • fish distribution sampling;
    • Invasive smallmouth bass surveys and/or removal;
    • Youth/ family fishing events;
    • Data entry;
    • Some opportunity to participate in activities/duties carried out by Marine Resources Program staff at Charleston Field Office (e.g. shellfish surveys, commercial catch sampling at fish processing plants, recreational crab/clam creel sampling).
  • Klamath Falls/Lakeview office - assist with research on the movement behavior and habitat use of redband rainbow trout in Upper Klamath Lake and Klamath River.
    • Capture and tag adult and juvenile redband trout ( PIT tags);
    • Juvenile fish surveys (snorkel, seine and/or backpack e-fish);
    • Adult fish surveys in lake and stream coldwater refuges (visual census from paddleboard or boat and/or snorkel survey);
    • Hook-and-line capture of adult rainbow trout for biological sampling (DNA, stomach contents, scales, isotopes, bioimpedence measurements);
    • Adult fish surveys in Williamson, Wood, and Sprague Rivers (visual census, boat electrofishing, snorkel survey);
    • Angler (Creel) Surveys.
  • Hines office –work with professional biologists representing state, federal and tribal agencies on sampling and survey projects throughout southeast Oregon.
    • Reconnaissance of streams and preparation for August and September bull trout spawning surveys on the Upper Malheur River and North Fork Malheur River;
    • Operation and maintenance of Passive Integrated Transponder (PIT) tag arrays on the Donner und Blitzen River and Willow Creek in the Trout Creek Mountains;
    • Assisting during electrofishing of streams throughout the Malheur Watershed;
    • Assisting fish biologist in evaluation of sport fisheries throughout the Watershed (Harney and Malheur counties);
    • Aiding in boat electrofishing on the Lower Owyhee River to sample brown trout;
    • Gear preparation and maintenance.

2020 ODFW Wildlife Student Internship Program Opportunities

ODFW Fish Division will be hiring 13 interns for the summer of 2020. You can click on the text in the ‘Supplemental Information’ section for information on the individual positions that will be available.

To apply, click the following link:

Paid Fish Division Internship Opportunities - Fish District Management Intern (Multiple Locations)

# District Office Location District Biologist Housing Available Supplemental Information Status
1 ODFW HQ Salem Mike Gauvin No 2020 - ODFW Fish Intern HQ No longer available
2 Deschutes Prineville Brett Hodgson No 2020 - ODFW Fish Intern Deschutes Canceled
3 Klamath Klamath Falls Ben Ramirez No 2020 - ODFW Fish Intern Klamath Canceled
4 John Day John Day Stephan Charette No 2020 - ODFW Fish Intern John Day Canceled
5 Wallowa Enterprise Kyle Bratcher No 2020 - ODFW Fish Intern Enterprise Canceled
6 La Grande La Grande Tim Bailey Yes 2020 - ODFW Fish Intern La Grande Canceled
7 North Coast Tillamook Robert Bradley No 2020 - ODFW Fish Intern North Coast District Canceled
8 Mid-Coast Newport John Spangler for rent 2020 - ODFW Fish Intern Mid Coast District Canceled
9 Coos-Coquille Charleston Mike Gray for rent 2020 - ODFW Fish Intern Coos-Coquille Canceled
10 Mid-Willamette Corvallis Elise Kelley No 2020 - ODFW Fish Intern Mid Willamette Canceled
11 Upper Willamette Springfield Jeff Ziller No 2020 - ODFW Fish Intern Upper Willamette Canceled
12 Umpqua Roseburg/Diamond L. Greg Huchko Yes 2020 - ODFW Fish Intern Umpqua Canceled




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