Because of the uncertainty still surrounding COVID-19, we are postponing opening the application period for our 2021 summer internship program until later this spring. Please check back. Keep reading for program description and application requirements.

Check out our “eco-tour” (aka “Research Experience”) program (11-16 July 2021) if you want to experience field work, but cannot commit to the 8 – 10 week internship or are not yet 18 years old.

Internships with DCP

The Dolphin Communication Project (DCP) offers internships for college students during fall, spring, and summer semesters on a revolving basis. We offer two types of internships: Office Internships and Fieldwork Internship (see below for more info). Each of the two internship positions involves a data processing component which is conducted at the DCP office located in the USA. Office interns must be at least 18 years old at the start of their internship. Field interns must be at least 21 years old at the start of their internship.

School Credit

Many universities offer course credit for internships. Credit for internships must be arranged by each intern individually and independently with their school. Please contact your college’s Intern Program Coordinator or your advisor for information on arranging credit. DCP can provide documentation of a completed internship once the intern has finished the program.

Lodging and Logistics

All intern positions with DCP are UNPAID. At this time, we cannot offer free lodging to interns. Once an intern is confirmed for a particular semester, we will do our best to assist that intern with finding contact information for local property managers and college housing offices; however the responsibility ultimately lies with the applicant to find and secure lodging during their internship. We strongly encourage incoming interns to make lodging considerations BEFORE committing to the internship with DCP. Because DCP’s office is located in a relatively small town, finding affordable short-term housing can be challenging. Interns are also responsible for their own transportation between their accommodations and DCP. All interns should be advised that there is no public transportation in the area. For this reason, all interns have their own vehicles and many live within a 50 mile radius.

Office Internships – description

Office Internships with DCP are generally offered to college students who are willing to spend a semester (8–12 weeks) working with us on data processing. Weekly commitments vary depending on the student’s school schedule and requirements. Interns gain skills and understanding in data processing, including but not limited to photo-identification, focal follows and event sampling for behavioral analyses, and acoustic analyses of dolphin sounds (whistles & echolocation clicks). Interns learn about statistical applications as well. Interns may be required to develop a project or research question of their own for a formal school report – often these reports lead to conference presentations or papers. Interns are given access to Dudzinski’s reprint and book library and encouraged to debate topics and hypotheses with other DCP volunteers, interns and research associates when available. Interns may also assist as needed with the development of education programs for secondary schools and the general public as well as presentation materials for dissemination of results through DCP via classes or the Internet. As a general rule, academic-year internships will see the intern in the office for ~15–20 hours per week, whereas the summer internships average 25-35 hours per week. Office internships positions are UNPAID.

Fieldwork Internships – description

Each summer, DCP fills an average of 2 internships with both office and field components. Fieldwork Interns spend 3 – 5 weeks learning and assisting with data analysis and other responsibilities at our US office (see Office Internship description for task details). The office portion of this program is required. Interns will then spend 4 – 6 weeks assisting DCP researcher Kelly Melillo Sweeting (check out Our Team in the “About” menu) at our Bimini The Bahamas field site (check out Research Sites in the “Research” menu), studying wild Atlantic spotted and bottlenose dolphins and completing necessary data related tasks. Fieldwork internship positions are UNPAID, require a fee (approximately $1,100; exact fee TBD annually) to cover field expenses (housing, electricity, water, but not food) and do not include costs for any airfare (to/from FL or Bimini, to/from your home town and FL or Bimini) or lodging during the office component. Fieldwork internships are limited on average to two spaces per summer at the Bimini field site, and the application process is therefore highly competitive.

Current enrollment in a degree-seeking program, background in science and/or animal behavior and experience on boats and/or with photo-identification are all desired, but not necessarily required. The successful candidates will be comfortable on a boat for several hours at a time in varying conditions (including intense heat). They will also be proficient swimmers with the desire to improve free-diving skills. They will be able to work as a team both at the office and in a fairly remote and isolated field setting.

Short Field Experience Internships – description

Short Field Experience Interns (SFE interns) join our Bimini, The Bahamas field site for 12 nights. No other component is required. SFE interns will get a jam-packed experience, learning about DCP’s data collection, data entry and data analysis procedures. SFE interns will contribute directly to DCP’s research and education efforts while getting a taste of the research life for themselves. The fee for this experience covers lodging, utilities and drinking water. Transportation (by air or ferry) to Bimini and food while on Bimini are not included. Applicants must be 18 years old to apply and preference may be given to those applicants over 21 years old. Applicants must complete the application form below, however only the following supplemental materials are required: cover letter, resume and one (1) letter of recommendation.

Required Qualities (office and field)

*An interest in biology, marine biology, animal behavior and/or conservation

*Strong written, speaking and computer skills (Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint)

*Strong attention to detail and good organizational skills

*Ability to work both independently and in team settings

*Willingness to receive, absorb and adjust to constructive criticism/feedback

*Capacity to represent DCP in a respectful manner at all times

Current & Recently Closed Positions

Field Internship Summer 2020

When: Mid-June – early/mid-August 2020 (exact overall dates and dates in Florida/dates in Bimini TBD)

Status: NOW OPEN!

Application Deadline: Rolling; Application review will be begin on 7 February

Applications are accepted via email only! Please see description above, and application below, for more information. If you still have questions, please email us: info {at} dcpmail {dot} org


Field Internship Summer 2019

When: Late May – early/mid-August 2018 (exact overall dates and dates in Florida/dates in Bimini TBD)
Status: NOW OPEN!
Application Deadline: 1 March (Note: We understand letters of recommendation often take time to acquire. If you need more time for your letter(s) of recommendation, please request an extension along with your otherwise complete application packet. An extension until 8 March may be given to qualified applicants.

Applications are accepted via email only! Please see description above, and application below, for more information. If you still have questions, please email us: info {at} dcpmail {dot} org


Short Field Experience Internship Summer 2019

When: TBD; 12-nights in May or June
Status: CLOSED
Application Deadline: TBD (often mid-February)

Applications are accepted via email only! Please see description above, and application below, for more information. If you still have questions, please email us: info {at} dcpmail {dot} org


Note: All applicants for office-only internships must be 18 years of age. Preference for field interns will be given to applicants over 21 years old. Although international applicants are invited to apply, all applicants should know that interns are responsible for their own daily transportation to/from the office and public transportation is not available in this area; therefore all interns have their own vehicles (or bicycle if housing to close to office). All application materials must be submitted electronically. No hard copies will be accepted. Please submit all materials together, with the exception of letters of recommendation, which may be sent separately.


How To Apply

To apply for one of DCPs internship spaces, download the internship application form as a PDF . Applications must be sent via email to info {at} dcpmail {dot} org This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it with the applicant name as part of the file name on each attached document. Please clearly state which position(s) you are applying for. Due to field schedules and our mission to be “green,” hard copies of application materials cannot be accepted. Applicants will be contacted by DCP to confirm receipt of their application materials, however unsuccessful applicants may or may not be contacted after that confirmation.