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Internships

Internships

Current Intern Opportunities

Teen Science Scholars

Teen Science Scholars complete hands-on summer internships with Science Division staff at the Denver Museum of Nature & Science. Teen interns strengthen their investigative and communication skills, develop a peer network of students from across the state of Colorado, and share their work and experiences during a Showcase event at the end of the summer. To be eligible, applicants must be entering their junior or senior year of high school in the fall of 2021, be interested in learning more about a science-related career, and be available for the duration of the internship (early June through the end of July). Teens from groups that have been historically marginalized from the sciences and individuals who will be the first generation in their family to complete a four-year college degree are strongly encouraged to apply

Applications must be received by Sunday, March 14, 2021. Late or incomplete applications will not be considered. If you are selected as a candidate, you will be scheduled for a virtual interview with Museum staff. Interviews will take place in late March and early April 2021. Applicants will receive all notifications via email.

Teen Science Scholars receive a monthly stipend, bus passes, and Museum cafeteria vouchers to offset cost-of living expenses during their internship. Transportation and supplies for fieldwork are provided by the Museum.

Teen Science Scholars is made possible with support from the Harvey Family Foundation, the Gateway Fund II of The Denver Foundation, the Paul and Harriet Rosen Teen Science Scholars Endowment, Dr. Paul & Mrs. Harriet Rosen, Marx-Stark Family Foundation, Robert Walker & Cristy Godwin, Phillip & Susan Greenberg, John G. Duncan Charitable Trust, Robert Zupkus & Janet Burda, Jon & Roxanne Isenhart, and Lael Moe & Cathy Fennelly, among other donors, and Dr. Richard Stucky, who was instrumental in founding the program.

Application Deadline: Sunday, March 14, 2021  

Teen Science Scholar Flyer English

Teen Science Scholar Flyer Spanish

If you are a current or inactive volunteer or intern and are interested in applying to be a 2021 Teen Sciences Scholar please contact Moe Shuley at [email protected] or 303-370-8345 to have your account reset. 

Anthropology

Ancient Colorado was home to the preeminent makers of some of the world’s most beautiful ancient sandals – many woven a millennia ago. Sandals are more than mere footwear: they are an incredibly rich source of data that can unlock the mysteries of prehistoric migration and reveal levels of social status, cost/benefit economy and gender roles. Their treads can express social identity, their weaving style illustrates the skill-set of the artists and the origin of the artists who created them – but we still don’t know much about making, wearing and walking in these ancient shoes.

Teen Science Scholar students will conduct an experimental archeology research project on ancient sandal technology. Together, this group -- along with guidance and interactive lectures of outside experts -- will study the methods, materials, and types of sandals made 1800 years ago, weave 30 pairs of authentic prehistoric pueblo sandals and then terrain-test them for functionality and durability on trails around the Museum. We will find others to help us, film, write and construct online learning modules to share our learning, receive assistance from other museum professionals, and work with indigenous community members. TSS students will engage (as a group and independently) with indigenous arts and history, apply archaeological data to scientific experimentation, and will write up our findings in a publishable format as a contribution to broader anthropological questions in Pueblo prehistory.

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Conservation

What is conservation? Conservation is the discipline of long-term preservation of material cultural heritage, which includes fine art objects, ethnographic items, and archaeological artifacts. The main activities involved in conservation are documentation, examination, research, preventive care, and treatment. For more information about conservation, visit the American Institute for Conservation’s website: https://www.culturalheritage.org/about-conservation/what-is-conservation

In the Avenir Conservation Center, we primarily care for items from the Museum’s Anthropology collection, which mostly consists of archaeological and ethnographic artifacts from North America, but also items from around the world, ancient to modern. We are currently conducting a condition survey of over 700 Native American items from the Northwest Coast Collection. This project will involve collaboration with source communities. The purpose of the condition survey is to learn more about these objects (materials, manufacturing techniques) and determine which objects are most in need of future conservation stabilization. In addition to being introduced to the discipline of conservation, Teen Science Scholars will assist in the documentation and examination of these items. This will include photographing and handling the items, examining them under magnification, and recording observations related to their deterioration.  

In addition, the Avenir Conservation Center is working to preserve 130,000-70,000 year-old conifer cones that were excavated from the Ziegler Reservoir site near Snowmass, CO, ten years ago. We are conducting experiments to determine the best method for preserving the cones, and, during Summer 2021, we will be CT scanning the ancient cones in collaboration with the Northwestern University/Art Institute of Chicago Center for Scientific Studies in the Arts (NU-ACCESS). Teen Science Scholars will assist in the documentation of the experimental cones and the cleaning, preparation, and handling of the ancient cones during the scanning process. 

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Earth Sciences Digital Research Lab and Collections Work

For the summer of 2021, the Earth Sciences Curators and Collections, Digital and Preparatory Labs are collaborating to offer wide-ranging experiences of aspects of paleontological preparation, curation, collections management, and research. Scholars will work primarily in the Avenir Collections Center and Digital Research Laboratory. Most of a fossil's life, after discovery, is spent in collections, where the Earth Sciences primary mentors work. Here, fossils are curated and digitized for research and exhibition access. After the fossil is carefully brought to the Museum from the field, it is tracked to the labs where they are cleaned and housed in protective cradles, then sorted and stored in the Avenir Collections Center. The Digital Research Lab renders and models digital data of fossils both before and after physical preparation and these digital renderings are used for scientific publications and public exhibits. Fossils discovered at the local research sites represent the full ecology, from the plants to complete vertebrate skulls.

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Earth Sciences Paleobotany Collections Work

This summer the Earth Sciences Department is excited to work with two Teen Scholars to help analyze and digitize a portion of the paleobotanical (fossil plant) collection housed in the Avenir Collections Center. The project aim is to understand the ecological interactions between plants and insects immediately following the Cretaceous/Paleogene mass extinction. The evidence collected for this study gives us information on how plants and insects, which are the bedrock of this ancient food web, rebound from the asteroid that killed the dinosaurs and gave rise to the age of mammals. Training and mentoring will focus on aspects of paleontological research, including data collection and curation, as well as collections management.

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Entomology

This summer, the Entomology Collections at the Museum is looking for two motivated Teen Science Scholars to participate in insect collecting, preparation, and research as part of a biodiversity survey in Denver’s City Park to gain a baseline understanding of its insect fauna before and after planned modifications to a section of the Park.

Under the direction of Entomology Curator Dr. Frank Krell and Zoology Collections Manager Jeff Stephenson, students will help collect samples using multiple field techniques, prepare and preserve specimens using best practices in the lab, record data for future reporting, and work behind the scenes in the insect collections, which number over 1 million specimens.

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Zoology and Health Sciences

This summer, the Zoology Preparation Laboratory is partnering with the Genetics Laboratory to give a well-rounded view of the ornithology work done at the Museum. The prep lab prepares the animal specimen by collecting tissue samples, cleaning skeletons, and documenting features. In addition, they collect any parasites both in and on the body for further research. The tissue sample is then sent to the Genetics Lab where DNA is extracted, amplified, and sent out for sequencing. Once the results are returned, the lab trims the sequences and performs species identification.

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Adult Internships

Robert L. Akerley Internship

The Robert L. Akerley Anthropology Collections Intern will assist in several potential projects this summer: rehousing and reorganizing Flat Art or Southern Plains collections; rehousing, moving, and cataloging Archaeology collections. The possibility remains for small-scale research projects tailored to the intern's interests. The intern will be trained in artifact re-housing, artifact inventory, processing, movement, cataloging, data entry, and analysis. The intern will report directly to Anthropology collections staff, as well as Anthropology curators, depending on the mutually agreed upon assignments. Internships are offered to currently enrolled or recently graduated (within the last year) undergraduate or graduate-level students. Experience or education related to conservation and/or anthropology. This is a 10-week stipend internship.

The Robert L Akerley Anthropology intern will participate in the following activities:

  • Work on database record updates in EMu collections management system, including updating locations using barcode readers and updating catalog records
  • Work with volunteers recruited to assist with moving objects
  • Some research of collections as directed by curators or collections managers to establish cultural affiliations and artifact identifications
  • Ensure 0% damage to objects and specimens during move
  • The Intern must conduct work within the safety guidelines of the Museum and follow Museum health and safety policies and procedures

Preferred Skills

  • Experience working with museum collections
  • Familiarity with relational databases
  • Ability to cooperate with supervisors and accept coaching as well as work as part of a collective group to reach team goals.
  • Self-starter with the ability to plan, organize, and establish priorities to meet goals and achieve results according to a timeline with milestones and set deadlines.
  • Solid ability to think logically, methodically, and intuitively
  • Professional demeanor at all times; ensures professional representation at all times
  • Strong attention to detail, patience, and fine motor skills; excellent hand-eye coordination
  • Ability to work collaboratively with Museum staff and volunteers
  • Organized; ability to self-start and maintain a balance between several projects
  • Strong written and verbal communication skills
  • Work schedule to fall within Monday to Friday, 8:30 am. – 5 p.m.

Working Conditions

  • Ability to stand for extended periods of time
  • Ability to climb ladders
  • Ability to lift 30 pounds
  • Ability to safely work with sharp hand tools and implements

Mentors 
Dominique Alhambra 
Anthropology Collections Manager

Jeff Phegley 
Anthropology Assistant Collections Manager

Baylee Hughes 
Anthropology Collections Assistant

Compensation 
$6,000 Stipend

Schedule 
Duration: 10-week internship, 40 hours a week 
Monday–Friday, 8:30 a.m. – 5 p.m.
June 1 – August 6 (start and end dates are approximate)

Application Deadline
Friday, March 26, 2021

How to Apply 
If you have not previously applied, interned, or volunteered at the Denver Museum of Nature & Science, click on the blue box below marked Adult Internship Application to create an account and start your application today.

If you are a current or former applicant, intern, or volunteer, contact Moe Shuley at [email protected] to have your account reset to apply or you can recreate another account but you will need to use a different email address.

All applicants are required to submit a cover letter describing previous experience and a CV to your account. Please combine the cover letter, resume, or CV into a single document and upload it to your current or newly created account.

Questions?
For questions about the application process please contact Moe Shuley at [email protected] or 303.370.8345.

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Native American Science Internship

The Native American Science Intern in Conservation will participate in ongoing work for the IMLS grant-funded project Northwest Coast Collections: Building Bridges and Detailed Conservation Survey. The goal of the condition survey is to advance stewardship and public access for select objects in the Northwest Coast Collections through a collaborative process with the following communities: Kwakwaka’wakw, Makah, Nuu-chah-nulth, Tlingit, and Haida. The objective of the internship is to participate in object examination and the detailed conservation survey process. The intern will work directly with Conservation and Collections Management staff. Preventive conservation methods, safety, and steps for decision-making for stabilization treatment will be covered. If unfamiliar, the student will be introduced to the American Institute for Conservation’s Code of Ethics and Guidelines for Practice.

This internship is open to:

  • A currently enrolled or recently graduated (within 2 years) undergraduate of Native American, Alaska Native, Native Hawaiian, First Nations, Inuit, or Métis OR
  • A currently enrolled graduate student of Native American, Alaska Native, Native Hawaiian, First Nations, Inuit, or Métis

The Native American Science Intern will participate in the following activities:

  • Identify inorganic and organic materials and methods of manufacture, using visual methods and stereo and polarized light microscopy.
  • Complete detailed examination of collection items to detect and record signs of physical, chemical, and biological deterioration.
  • Work collaboratively with tribal representatives in completing condition survey.
  • Generate and update database records in the EMu collections database system.
  • Take, complete metadata, and upload digital photographs of examined objects into the DMNS server, and the EMu and IMu databases.
  • Other opportunities may include some public programming as it relates to collections, such as assisting with collections open houses, tours, or other events where collections are accessible.
  • Share work completed during internship via virtual programming, poster, presentation, etc.
  • The Intern must conduct work within the safety guidelines of the Museum and follow Museum health and safety policies and procedures

Preferred Skills

  • Experience or education related to conservation, anthropology, or archaeology or interest in working in the fields of collections management and museum studies
  • Experience working with museum collections
  • Familiarity with relational databases and data processing
  • Ability to cooperate with supervisors and accept coaching as well as work as part of a collective group to reach team goals.
  • Self-starter with the ability to plan, organize, and establish priorities to meet goals and achieve results according to a timeline with milestones and set deadlines.
  • Solid ability to think logically, methodically, and intuitively
  • Professional demeanor at all times; ensures professional representation at all times
  • Strong attention to detail, patience, and fine motor skills; excellent hand-eye coordination
  • Ability to work collaboratively with Museum staff and volunteers
  • Strong written and verbal communication skills
  • Work schedule to fall within Monday to Friday, 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Physical Working Conditions

  • Ability to sit or stand for extended periods of time
  • Ability to climb ladders
  • Ability to lift 10 pounds
  • Ability to safely work with sharp hand tools and implements

Deadline to Apply 
Friday, March 26, 2021

Mentors 
Megan Salas 
Conservator

Kathryn Reusch 
Conservation Techician

Compensation 
$6,000 Stipend

Candidates living outside of the Denver area, an allowance for travel and/or housing may also be available. Please inquire.

Schedule 
Duration: 10-week internship, 40 hours a week 
Monday–Friday, 8:30 a.m. – 5 p.m.
June 1 – August 6 (start and end dates are approximate)

Application Deadline
Friday, March 26, 2021

How to Apply 
If you have not previously applied, interned, or volunteered at the Denver Museum of Nature & Science, click on the blue box below marked Adult Internship Application to create an account and start your application today.

If you are a current or former applicant, intern, or volunteer, contact Moe Shuley at [email protected] to have your account reset to apply or you can recreate another account but you will need to use a different email address.

All applicants are required to submit a cover letter describing previous experience and a CV to your account. Please combine the cover letter, resume, or CV into a single document and upload it to your current or newly created account.

Questions?
For questions about the application process please contact Moe Shuley at [email protected] or 303.370.8345.

Read Full Description

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