was a paid summer internship that lasted from May-August 2017. The weekly hours
ranged from thirty to forty hours per week. Interns were assigned to four components
of BOP: Education, Restoration, Public Engagement, and General and Admission. There
was an online schedule that let the interns know which times to come in and who/where
to report to.
For Education, interns had to assist
with preparation and execution of oyster research station basic trainings, and
symposium. We had to help provide support with field expeditions, data
collection, research, and education outreach activities for school and camp
groups that volunteered on the island. We supported the Hatchery Manager with
managing the oyster stock in the lab as well as on the eco-dock through daily assessment
and action. Sometimes Harbor School high-school interns “helped” us. Help is
quoted because they really didn’t do anything besides gossip and complain about
the hard work.
For Restoration, we had to assist
with monitoring and research activities related to community reefs and oyster
nurseries in Brooklyn Bridge Park, Bush Terminal Park, Jamaica Bay, Great Kills
Harbor, Lemon Creek, and upper New York Harbor. That was fun because we often
took a speed boat to these locations. While on the boat, the captain would let
us practice driving the vessel and give us history and facts about New York. Visually,
New York is such a breathtaking city when you can see it while on the water. Lastly,
we helped categorize documents, survey/research photos, and assist with
mapping. When we did this, we worked with scientists from the Nature Conservancy,
as well as the BOP scientists. From them I learned how to test water quality,
and how to properly assess specific marine organisms in the oyster cages.
For Public Engagement, we assisted with the management of the BOP public exhibit
for visitors to Governors Island. That meant we facilitated volunteer
activities such as cage building, preparing recycled shells for seeding,
sorting and counting oysters, conducting oyster monitoring protocols and
preparing materials prior to the volunteer days. The volunteers were sometimes young
kids at camp, regular people who were interested in BOP, and even corporate
groups whose company support them for the volunteer day.
For the general duties and
administration, we assisted the supported
the financial team with data entry and field/office coordination. I must admit
that was my least favorite part of the internship. Sifting through financial documents
and receipts for the upcoming audit was not fun, but we all understood why it
had to be done.