Now Hiring Summer Water Quality Interns


Posted on February 28th, 2019

Sound Rivers is seeking multiple full-time interns, who will work with a Riverkeeper coordinating volunteers, and collecting and analyzing water quality samples for the summer of 2019. This experience is an excellent opportunity for a public health, chemistry, biology, or environmental science student who wants to demonstrate skills in leadership and project management with measurable outcomes.

Data collected will be used in the Waterkeeper Swim Guide, a recreational water quality monitoring and education program. Citizen scientists collect and analyze water samples from popular recreation areas to inform the public of areas with safe swimming conditions.


To apply, please email a cover letter and copy of your resume to Forrest English at Applications are due by March 29, though applications will be considered as they are received. This internship provides compensation of approximately $4,000 for 14 weeks of approximately 30-35 hours of work per week.  The positions will be based in Washington, Raleigh, or New Bern, NCWhen submitting applications, please note your preferred location.


The Water Quality Intern will be tasked with leading the program, under the supervision and direction of Riverkeeper staff. The position involves recruitment, coordination and training of volunteer sample collectors, performing lab and field work, managing data, and distributing results to the public. The position is both demanding and incredibly rewarding. The ideal candidate will possess a passion for clean water, charisma, leadership skills, and an above average attention to detail. While desired, prior knowledge or experience in water quality monitoring is not required; training will be provided.  Interns will have additional learning opportunities outside of the Swim Guide Program as time allows.


  • Strong attention to detail and organization
  • Ability to adhere to strict, but simple, Quality Control measures
  • Ability to lift and carry cooler full of ice, bend over to collect samples multiple times a day, and maintain a steady hand in the lab
  • Familiarity with Excel and ability to keep accurate records
  • Ability to teach others
  • Willingness to drive your own car up to 200 miles per week to collect samples (mileage is reimbursed at a rate of approximately $0.45/mile, and typical weekly mileage for the Water Quality Intern will vary from 0 to 100 miles per week)
  • Commitment to the goal of improving water quality through citizen science


May 13th to August 16th – start and end dates negotiable. An approximately 30-35 hour/week work schedule with some flexibility in hours. The weekly work schedule below is just an example.  Some nights and weekends may be required to fulfill the duties of the position.


Monday – Prep field equipment. Perform lab maintenance. Update records.
Tuesday – Coordinate volunteers for sample collection.
Wednesday – Collect samples from volunteers.
Thursday- Perform lab work on approximately 10-20 samples.
Friday – Analyze samples, record and distribute results to public.


Sound Rivers was founded in 2015 with the merger of the Neuse River Foundation and the Pamlico-Tar River Foundation, two of the state’s oldest grassroots conservation organizations. The mission of Sound Rivers is to monitor, protect and enhance water quality and related ecosystems in the Neuse and Tar-Pamlico River basins while supporting environmental justice. This union creates a powerful advocate, uniting with concerned citizens to work to protect these two cherished waterways.

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