As Penn State University's outdoor learning laboratory, Shaver's Creek offers environmental education programs, natural history exhibits, a raptor center, discovery room and miles of hiking trails.

Do you have a strong desire to share your knowledge and enthusiasm for the natural world with students and families in a nature center environment?

Shaver's Creek is Penn State University's nature center and environmental education laboratory seeking to enhance the quality of life by providing exemplary outdoor learning opportunities. Located twelve miles south of State College and the main campus of Penn State University, this multifaceted center offers environmental education programs for group visits, natural and cultural history exhibits, live birds of prey, amphibians and reptiles, hiking trails, native plant gardens, and more. The Raptor Center, providing perpetual care and housing for eagles, falcons, hawks and owls, is one of the few federally and state-licensed raptor facilities in Pennsylvania.

What You Can Do

Environmental Education Interns become an integral part of the staff and are encouraged to participate in all aspects of the center's operation.

Environmental Education Internships
(6-8 Interns per season)

Environmental Education Interns become an integral part of the Shaver's Creek staff and are encouraged to participate in all aspects of the Center's operation. A two-week orientation and training period is followed by seasonal program opportunities in both day and residential settings. Interns work with all ages, preschool to adult, and with a variety of groups, including schools, private organizations, clubs, and the general public. Program areas provide each Intern an opportunity to work in planning, delivering and evaluating the Center's educational and recreational programming. Observation and videotaping are used in evaluation, and Interns are encouraged to keep a journal.

Internship Program Areas:
Develop and implement program curriculum for residential Outdoor School (grades 5-8), school day programs (K-12), and summer day camps (ages 4-15)
Engage in Visitor Center operations and interact with visitors
Assist with live animal care and handling
Lead public natural and cultural history walks and team building programs
Train and supervise volunteers
Plan seasonal festivals and events
Contribute to the Center’s blog and social media
Restore habitats through trail stewardship
Collect and submit data for Citizen science projects and foster sustainable initiatives

Penn State Outdoor SchoolDid you know?
Interns play a huge part in the Penn State Outdoor School, a four-day, residential program for upper-elementary school students run by Shaver's Creek. Environmental Education Interns will provide children with a positive, outdoor education experience as they learn about the natural world through hands-on lessons and guided exploration. Check out current and former Interns who help out with the program by visiting the Penn State Outdoor School Facebook page.

Interning at Shaver's Creek literally changed my life. The community here was the most heartfelt, loving community I have ever had the pleasure of being a part of. The support was huge, and the Outdoor Director gave us room to try, learn and experiment on our own. I did not feel like an Intern, but rather, I felt like an important part of the family. Like I mattered. Now I realize that I have great potential for impact. —Cat Cici

Teaching a summer camp stream study course.

Summer Naturalists
(2-4 per summer season)

Naturalists for the Discovery & Explorer Summer Camp programs will be responsible designing their individual day’s environmental education based programs for a group of 12 campers, ages 4-11. You will also have opportunity to mentor two Leaders-In-Training (ages 12-17) each week. The camp week may include working Friday overnight into Saturday morning. A qualified candidate will be highly motivated and have a passion for working with children; prior experience in a summer camp setting is ideal. This is a paid position and you will receive CPR/first aid certification as part of training. The summer camp season runs from June through mid-August.

Time Commitment

Spider Intern!

The time an Intern spends at Shaver's Creek is demanding and intensely rewarding. You must have a sense of purpose, love children and animals, enjoy people, and possess a willingness to communicate a joy in and respect for our natural and cultural heritage.

Environmental Education internships are available during the winter/spring, summer and fall seasons, with an average work week of 45 hours (which does include some weekends).

Perks & Rewards

Staff participate in an interlocking hoops challenge!

Interns are valued members of the Shaver's Creek staff. Benefits include a $175/week stipend along with on-site housing nestled in the woods away from park visitors, with a private bedroom. Interns are encouraged to participate in professional development workshops and regional conferences, and each season includes a three-day staff trip to another environmental center or a facility of interest. Interns also have a workspace with computer and Internet access. Career counseling, job listing resources, and assistance with resume writing are also provided.

The Essentials

People from around the country travel to Shaver's Creek to be a part of this unique internship program.

Individuals from around the country travel to Shaver's Creek to be a part of this unique internship program. Successful candidates have some experience working with children and a strong desire to teach and share their knowledge and enthusiasm for the natural world. A background in education or the natural sciences is helpful but not necessary. Applications are encouraged from undergraduates, graduates and those seeking a career change.

Insider Tips for Environmental Education Interns
The most successful candidates have some experience working with children. A site visit and meeting with the Intern Coordinator is beneficial, but not necessary. Many first-time undergraduate candidates who are not initially accepted into the internship program mistakenly fail to reapply for an upcoming season. Persistence pays off so keep trying! —Doug Wentzel

Did You Know?

An Environmental Education Intern holds a bag of trash—the only one that could not be recycled or composted after a weekend festival of over 500 visitors!

Shaver’s Creek is a Zero Waste Facility!
Zero waste means that Shaver's Creek will reduce, reuse, recycle, or compost nearly all of the materials that is used on the property, with an ultimate goal of sending no garbage to the landfill. In the above photo, an Environmental Education Intern holds a bag of trash—the only one that could not be recycled or composted after a weekend festival of over 500 visitors. Now, that's amazing! Learn more about the Zero Waste Facility Initiative »

Your First Move & Connections

Never Stop Discovering entrance to Shaver's Creek Environmental Center.

To begin the application process, email or fax your resume, cover letter and three professional references to the specific contact noted below. Phone interviews are conducted with top candidates.

Environmental Education Internships
Doug Wentzel, Internship Coordinator
Environmental Education Intern applicants must also complete an online Intern application form.

Internship Program Dates & Application Deadlines:
Summer (May/June–August): March 1st
Fall (September–December): June 15th
Winter/Spring (January–May): November 1st

Applications are accepted until all positions are filled—so apply early!

Summer Naturalists
Tesha Omeis, Summer Camp Program Director

Shaver's Creek Environmental Center
Penn State Outreach
3400 Discovery Rd.
Petersburg, PA 16669
(814) 863-2000
(814) 865-2706 fax

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