08 Sep Education and Community Outreach Intern – Latino Heritage Internship Program
This professional development opportunity is an education and community outreach internship at Fire Island National Seashore. The primary tasks and deliverables associated with the internship will be to assist with media development; and provide community outreach, interpretive and education programming at the park, in communities and virtually, with a special focus on engaging local underserved populations and underrepresented audiences. While gateway communities to the park, such as Patchogue, are ethnically and socio-economically diverse, with large Latino populations, this demographic is not well represented in park visitors or park staff.
Based on studies conducted by the Environment for the Americas, as well as recent conversations with local Latino community leaders, this may be due to a lack of awareness of what the park has to offer, and its relevance to the needs and interests of local community residents. Engaging a broader demographic is a primary park goal identified in the Seashore’s General Management Plan (2016), Visitor Experience Plan (2017) and Strategic Plan (2020).
The Latino Heritage Intern will play a critical role in furthering the park’s efforts to engage Latino audiences and other underserved populations. It will also enable the park to support the National Park Service-wide goals outlined in the “Achieving Relevance in Our Second Century” strategy, including fostering the next generation of NPS stewards. Community outreach using a variety of virtual platforms will be a key component of the internship. The Latino Heritage Intern will contribute to social media and the development of bilingual information and programming about park resources, visitor experiences, and youth employment opportunities. Effort will be dedicated to a media campaign and programming celebrating Latino Conservation Week. This may include hosting a stewardship opportunity or recreational family day at the park, and/or conducting virtual Spanish language or bilingual programs for local libraries, churches and community enrichment programs.
Along with park staff, the intern will staff community fairs such as Patchogue’s “Family Fun Night,” and career fairs at local schools and colleges, and assist with offsite programming in other under-served communities on Long Island. The intern will work alongside National Park Service Park Rangers at park visitor centers to assist with park programs and visitor operations. These opportunities will help orient the intern to park resources and the visitor experience, as well as provide a place-based venue for developing and practicing communication skills.
The intern will assist with programs and media geared for youth and general public audiences on a variety of topics including marine life, recreational fishing, barrier island ecology, shoreline dynamics, maritime and American history, and more. Once the intern gains adequate content knowledge and progresses with interpretive skills development, she/he will be encouraged to lead programs and develop media on park topics of interest. He/she will also help plan for, implement, and participate in volunteer and partner events such as fishing clinics, coastal cleanups, and native plant/pollinator gardening days.