Sandy Hook Lab Internships and Outreach
At the James J. Howard Laboratory, we are dedicated to making our science accessible to everyone.
Our staff at the James J. Howard Marine Sciences Laboratory at Sandy Hook are mentoring the next generation of fisheries and marine scientists. We offer internships for high school and college students and participate in local and regional outreach events.
Our staff mentors work with college and high school students through a variety of internship programs, offering opportunities in the following study areas:
- Finfish aquaculture
- Climate change
- Fish life history and recruitment
- Habitat ecology
- Environmental DNA (eDNA) methods
For students seeking undergraduate and graduate degrees, we lead and participate in a variety of internship and student programs. Learn more about these college internships and other academic opportunities and how to apply. We encourage prospective interns to reach out to potential mentors about summer research projects before applying. To learn more about our mentors, browse the Howard Laboratory staff directory.
Student Career Development
Sandy Hook Intern Partnership Program
The Sandy Hook Intern Partnership Program is an annual summer mentorship experience open to all young professionals doing research at the Howard Laboratory. Its goal is to provide an inclusive environment that supports students in their scientific careers. This program helps volunteers, students, employees, and regional associates connected with our laboratory and/or the Sandy Hook campus grow their research and professional skills with guidance from our scientists. Meeting topics include:
- Resume building
- Establishing and maintaining professional networks
- Giving effective presentations
- Writing grant proposals
- Identifying education and career paths
- Science communication
The program concludes with interns presenting their summer research. If you are an intern, volunteer, employee, or associate interested in the program please contact Chris Chambers or Beth Phelan.
Sandy Hook Outreach, Research, and Education Program
The Sandy Hook Outreach, Research, and Education program connects NOAA scientists with local high schools to increase environmental literacy in inner city communities. This program is broken into two sessions: an academic session that runs September to June and a summer session that runs July to August. The program goals are to:
- Support STEM in underserved communities
- Increase community awareness of local environments, issues, and related NOAA research
- Foster student creativity and stewardship
- Create partnerships with local schools and environmental organizations
Currently, we are working with the Rachel Carson High School for Coastal Studies. Participation is open to all New Jersey and New York high schools. Please contact Jeffrey Pessutti if you are interested in getting your high school involved.
Academic Session: September to June
Once a month throughout the academic year, our scientists host interactive sessions about a variety of topics, including:
- Local ecology and environmental issues
- Career development
- Marine science technology
- Science communication
- NOAA mentorship
Summer Session: July to August
Our summer session gives students field experience, opportunities to network with local organizations, and resume-building guidance. This session is for students interested in conducting summer research and stewardship projects working with New York City Parks and the Hudson River Park Trust.
- Field trips to local parks
- A career fair
- Short-term research on a local habitat
- Research with other local high school students
- Hands-on experience with science technology and gear
We are committed to educating the public about our research, mission, and internships. Throughout the year, we work with internal and external partners to take part in outreach and public education events.
Ocean Fun Days
Ocean Fun Days is an annual public event celebrating New Jersey’s natural resources. It takes place over two days every May at Island Beach State Park and Gateway National Park at Sandy Hook. Educational and entertaining for all ages, Ocean Fun Days is a great way to kick off summer and how to help protect our ocean. View event resources like educational videos and environmental activities. At Ocean Fun Days you can:
- Participate in activities to learn about the environment
- Chat with NOAA scientists and staff
- Connect with academics and professionals
- Enjoy outdoor guided tours
In addition to NOAA Fisheries, local environmental organizations offering presentations include:
- New Jersey Sea Grant
- New Jersey Natural Gas
- Gateway National Parks Service
- Island Beach State Park
- New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection
- Local universities
Additional Outreach Activities
Throughout the year, we work with internal and external partners to take part in outreach and public education events. If you’d like to include us in your event, please email our Academic Programs Office. Include “Howard Laboratory Outreach” in the subject line.
Examples of past events we’ve participated in include:
- Girl Scouts of New Jersey Career Day
- Long Branch High School Earth Day
- Leadership Initiative for Networking and Collaboration (LINC) Conference