Job Opportunity: Endangered Species Conservation GIS Intern at Defenders of Wildlife

Defenders of Wildlife is hiring an Endangered Species Conservation GIS intern. S/He must have a background in using mapping software and have strong research skills. Preferably, the intern will have knowledge of ArcGIS products and other GIS software. Start and end dates are flexible. 

Date published: 2017/01/18

Thisnternship is an opportunity for a college or post-graduate student to work one-on-one with our Conservation GIS Analyst in Washington, DC along with other Defenders staff.  In the position, the intern will assist with spatial analysis and cartographic projects including digitizing data from electronic or paper images, developing and organizing spatial data and databases, and creating cartographic products and images for reports, publications, and presentations. 

The internship will last at least one college semester or longer as determined on a case-by-case basis. The start date and duration of the internship are flexible.


  • Assist Defenders’ Conservation GIS Analyst with analysis and spatial data development;
  • Develop and implement various spatial analysis projects;
  • Digitize electronic or paper maps/images;
  • Develop and organize spatial data/databases;
  • Create cartographic products;
  • Write reports.


The intern must be an ambitious self-starter driven by the opportunity to help transform wildlife conservation through technology.  Interns must have demonstrated GIS experience, strong research and analytical skills, superior interpersonal skills with the ability to work with people from a variety of backgrounds, excellent written and verbal communication skills, and unparalleled time management skills with the ability to succeed under tight deadlines. 

Preferred Qualifications:

  • Advanced geospatial analysis skills. Comfort working with Model Builder, automating tasks with arcpy, and using ArcToolbox extensions (e.g., Spatial Analyst). Experience with QGIS and/or Google Earth Engine is a plus.
  • Familiarity with and strong interest in relevant web mapping platforms (e.g., CARTO, Mapbox, Google Earth Engine, ArcGIS), APIs (e.g., Bing, Google Maps, ArcGIS) and JavaScript libraries (e.g., Leaflet, Open Layers).
  • Advanced cartographic and design skills in print (e.g., Adobe Photoshop/Illustration) and on the web (e.g., HTML5/CSS3, JavaScript).
  • Basic knowledge of R and/or Python (e.g., pandas) for data management, statistical analysis, and visualization.
  • Knowledge of metadata standards and management.


Unpaid. Students are encouraged to seek funding opportunities through their schools or outside sources. We do offer a small transportation stipend.

How to apply:

Interested applicants should send an email to and reference Endangered Species Conservation GIS Intern in the subject line. Please include a resume and letter of interest. We strongly encourage early applications, as offers will be made on a rolling basis.