Division of
Natural and Applied Sciences

Remote Sensing/Spatial Ecology Intern the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute 

The Conservation GIS Lab (https://nationalzoo.si.edu/conservation-ecology-center) at the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute (SCBI) is seeking interns to start immediately. The internship project will focus on exploring the application of remote sensing space-borne lidar data (GEDI) and optical data (e.g., Sentinel or Landsat series) to classify vegetation types, particularly understory bamboo and woody invasive plants. 
 
Learning objectives:   
Pre-processing forest survey data and spatial datasets at a local or regional level 
Extracting GEDI metrics using Google Earth Engine and Python or R 
Building predictive spatial models for vegetation type classification using statistical analysis and machine learning algorithms. 
Gain experience with the analysis of GEDI data, spatial data analysis, and scientific communication. 
Qualifications: 
A Bachelor’s degree is required, and a Master’s degree is preferred. 
Commitment to a full-time schedule of 40 hours per week. 
Strong background in programming (Google Earth Engine (required) and Python (preferred) or R). 
Knowledge of GIS (preferably ArcGIS or QGIS) and remote sensing analysis is desirable. 
Strong writing skills 
Ability to conduct research independently and yet collegially in a team environment. 
Benefits: 
A competitive stipend up to $1,600 monthly, based on education and experience. 
Free dormitory-style housing on the SCBI campus. 
Interns will have access to a computer and reliable high-speed internet. 
Location & terms of appointment: 
On-campus internship in Front Royal, VA 
Minimum commitment of six months, beginning as soon as possible, with priority to longer-term candidates. 
Engaging with a cohort of fellow interns and researchers through regular meetings and communications. 
How to apply: 
Applications are open until the position is filled. 
Apply via the Smithsonian SOLAA system (https://solaa.si.edu/solaa/#/public). Search for “Internship” under “National Zoological Park”. The program name is “Conservation GIS Internship Program”. 
Submit a CV and a cover letter detailing: 
 1. Statement of Interest  
 2. Potential start date and the duration of time you are available for the internship.  
 3. Contact information for three references.  
 4. Elaborate on your programming experience and skill as much as possible. 
Note:  
1. Successful candidates may need a background check, which might include fingerprinting at a Smithsonian or police facility. 
2. Due to a high volume of applications received, we are unable to contact each applicant individually regarding the application status. The SOLAA application system will provide the most updated status regarding individual applications and the position. 
 
About SCBI: 
The Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute is located at the north entrance of the Shenandoah National Park in Front Royal, VA, about 60 miles west of Washington, D.C. Dedicated to promoting the conservation of biological diversity, SCBI not only furthers the Smithsonian Institution’s broader objectives but also enriches our understanding by studying endangered species, habitats, and communities. Beyond research, SCBI plays an important role in sharing these insights through advanced studies, professional training programs, and public outreach