Student Opportunities

National Wildlife Federation's
Great Lakes Regional Center
Fellow & Intern Program

The Great Lakes Regional Center of the National Wildlife Federation has a rich history of partnership with student conservationists. In fact, the regional center was originally established as a partnership between the Law School at the University of Michigan and the National Wildlife Federation. 

Today, the Great Lakes Regional Center is a leader on critical issues that affect the people and wildlife who live in and around the Great Lakes region. Our six main program areas of Water Policy, Great Lakes and Waters Restoration, Education and Engagement, Climate Mitigation and Resiliency, Equity and Justice Integration, and Wildlife reflect the work we do to protect people and wildlife in a changing world. 

The Great Lakes Regional Center leads key networks and coalitions, including the Healing Our Waters-Great Lakes Coalition, the Great Lakes Business Network, and the Great Lakes Conservation Coalition, which are changing the landscape for advocacy around Great Lakes issues. In addition to our established and successful suite of campaigns and coalitions, the Great Lakes Regional Center is consistently working to build our expertise and advocacy in new and emerging issue areas within our region as well as to build our capacity broadly in areas like communications, membership outreach, and philanthropy. 

Annual Student Opportunities

The GLRC has multiple opportunities for students. Student positions are available each summer with the GLRC – they tend to last about 12 weeks on average. In addition to summer positions, the GLRC hosts work-study positions (year-round), school-year (fall or winter semester) opportunities, and other opportunities as they arise.

The GLRC also offers fellowship positions for recent graduates and post-graduates. Fellowships are 11-month positions and are available based on funding resources and capacity needs for the GLRC.

NWF also offers legal internships through the NWF-led University of Michigan Environmental Law & Sustainability Clinic.

To support these positions, we have two types of financial arrangements.

• The first are positions that are housed at, hired by, and funded through NWF.

• The second are positions that are housed at NWF in partnership with another entity, such as a university or college.

Student Application Processes

Application requirements, processes and timelines vary by position. 

In addition to positions located in the Great Lakes region, NWF also offers intern opportunities across the country, including a fellow program for recent graduates based out of our National Advocacy Center located in Washington, D.C. Current fellowship opportunities through NWF’s National Advocacy Center may be accessed through NWF’s career portal at

If you meet more than 75% of the qualifications of the posted positions, you are welcome to apply.

Annual Program Timeline for Positions

The GLRC will follow the general timeline below for posting and filling student positions throughout the year.

• Summer intern positions in partnership with universities or colleges posted on our open positions page

• Interview and hiring processes for offered summer positions

Mid-May to Mid-August:
• Summer internships housed at NWF
• Interview and hiring process for fall semester and/or work study positions (if offered)

September to December:
• Work study positions housed at NWF commence
• Interview and hiring process for winter semester and/or work study positions (if offered)

Funding and Financing Options for Student Positions 

The GLRC ensures that positions posted have already secured funding, either solely through NWF or in partnership with a university or college. Position postings clearly state the level of compensation or stipend being offered, as well as benefit information if applicable. We are open to collaborations for research and teaching that involve placement of students. We generally do not have volunteer positions available although are open to such positions in unique circumstances. In addition, various scholarship opportunities are typically available for students through universities and colleges to put toward experience in the conservation field. 

If you have a question, opportunity or concern around financing for an open position, please contact Anna Marie Zorn, GLRC Communications Manager at . 

Interested in Partnering with the Great Lakes Regional Center? 

The GLRC is committed to growing a robust program able to offer various types of opportunities for students to collaborate with us on conservation work. We are always interested in growing our network of partner colleges and universities! 

Please contact Anna Marie Zorn, GLRC Communications Manager at with questions or suggestions around new partnerships that will benefit students. 

National Wildlife Federation’s Commitment to Equity & Justice    

We strive to increase equity and justice in all elements of our work and with our partners to support the interdependent needs of wildlife and people in a rapidly changing world. 

We are proud to be an equal opportunity employer. Please visit to learn more about National Wildlife Federation’s commitment to equity, justice, and inclusion. 

Fellows and interns housed at the GLRC are expected to reflect the staff values of the National Wildlife Federation: collaboration, mindfulness, empowerment, inclusivity, and mission focus.

If you have a disability and require an accommodation or assistance with online application processes related to NWF-housed positions, please tell us how we can help by calling us at 703-438-6244.

For more information or specific inquiries, please contact: 
Anna Marie Zorn
Communications Manager
Great Lakes Regional Center

Where We Work

More than one-third of U.S. fish and wildlife species are at risk of extinction in the coming decades. The National Wildlife Federation is on the ground in seven regions across the country, collaborating with 53 state and territory affiliates to reverse the crisis and ensure wildlife thrive.

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