Community Engaged Internship (CEI) for Undergraduate Students


Sea Grant’s Community Engaged Internship (CEI) aims to broaden participation in coastal, ocean, Great Lakes, and marine sciences by offering paid internships to students from under-resourced, underrepresented and/or indigenous and tribal populations. The CEI is a national program involving Sea Grant state programs and other partners.


The Illinois-Indiana Sea Grant (IISG), in cooperation with Shedd Aquarium in Chicago, Illinois, is offering a CEI opportunity to support conservation policy efforts for the Shedd Aquarium. Working with the Senior Director of Government Affairs & Conservation Policy, the intern will collaboratively develop policy-driven solutions related to climate change and resiliency for disproportionately harmed communities. The primary project will be working with Shedd staff and Great Lakes colleagues to develop a white paper outlining a suite of policy solutions that will help prepare the Great Lakes region for climate impacts, build resiliency and grow healthy and vibrant interconnected ecosystems and neighborhoods. 

CEI PARTICIPANT EXPECTATIONS: The IISG Sea Grant intern will be part of a national cohort of students. Each intern is expected to participate in all aspects of the CEI program: 

  • On-the-ground learning experience, including completion of a project that extends the knowledge of community stakeholders to address a coastal, marine or Great Lakes issue of environmental, economic and/or social importance.  
  • Mentoring by Sea Grant and Shedd professionals, Sea Grant funded researchers and Knauss Fellows. 
  • Virtual professional development sessions and training opportunities. 
  • Peer discussions with other interns in the cohort using Slack or other virtual platforms. 
  • Graduation Ceremony to celebrate accomplishments, network with peers and other professionals (in-person meeting included, dependent on status of COVD-19 restrictions). 
  • Participation in pre/post evaluation.

WHEN: This full-time summer internship will be 10-12 weeks long, depending on the intern’s availability, starting no later than June 1 2022.

ELIGIBILITY: Interns must be enrolled in an undergraduate degree at a 2- or 4-year college or university, at the time of application. IISG and Shedd Aquarium encourage applicants from groups that are historically underrepresented in the sciences, including African-American, American Indian or Alaska Native, Hispanic and Latino/a/x, female, first-generation college students, veterans, LGBTQ+, and students with disabilities. The program is also open to students who have experienced and worked to overcome educational or economic disadvantages, and/or who have personal or family circumstances that may complicate their career paths.

SALARY: The intern will be paid a stipend of $6000 for 10 weeks, with the possibility of 2 additional paid weeks, depending on the intern’s availability. In addition, any work-related travel will be covered.

LOCATION: The intern will have the choice to work remotely, in-person at the Shedd Aquarium, or a hybrid schedule. If the status of COVID worsens, the intern can work completely remotely. Occasional travel may be possible for the internship, depending on travel status policies. 


Send all application materials (listed below) via email to Angela Archer,, and include “2022 CEI Internship” in the subject line. All questions should be directed to Ms. Archer via email or 765-496-3722. Save the following documents in a single PDF file:

  • Cover letter, please tell us about yourself and how you fit into the goals of the CEI program, and how this internship will help you with your career goals. Also, please address what you think are the most important environmental justice issues facing the Chicago and Great Lakes region?  (1-2 pages);
  • Curriculum vitae or resume detailing education and work experiences (2 pages maximum); and
  • One letter of recommendation; which can be sent directly to on your behalf or included in your application (1 page max). 


Value Statements

Illinois-Indiana Sea Grant

The people of Illinois-Indiana Sea Grant value diversity, equity, and inclusion in both our organization and the communities we serve. Therefore, we strive to make access to research, outreach, education, and employment opportunities available to everyone, regardless of race, color, religion, place of origin, gender, sexual orientation, age, socio-economic status, disability, or veteran status. The full IISG values statement can be found at

Shedd Aquarium

Just as the aquatic world encompasses a vast spectrum of diversity, Shedd Aquarium is committed to celebrating the individual differences that make us spectacular. We practice values of diversity, equity and inclusion comprehensively through Shedd culture, workforce, workplace, vendor selection, programs and experiences. 

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