The RESESS internship program aims to offer students genuine research exposure, professional development, and insight into geoscience careers, focusing on geophysics. Our goal is to include a diverse range of geophysical projects, constituting over 50% of student assignments during the 11-week program. Interns have the option to select from two cohort models and are provided with housing, a stipend, and funding for a fall meeting.

Interns participating in a day of team-building activities. (Photo: Scott Johnson/EarthScope)

The first, named by location (e.g., Boulder), places students together in shared housing, each working on individual projects with faculty mentorship on nearby campuses. The second model, “Satellite,” involves students dispersed nationwide, collaborating with mentors at EarthScope Consortium institutions (e.g., University of Washington). They attend virtual professional development seminars and build in-person communities on research campuses.

The program begins with an EarthScope intern orientation week, bringing together interns, researchers, alumni, and staff. This week highlights career opportunities, includes safety training, discusses mentor/mentee relationships, and fosters cohort building. Students can choose from two paths of activities during the week, with shared meals and field trips.

Active source seismic experiment at Trujillo well, Magdalena, NM, led by Juan Lorenzo (LSU). Photo: Emily Zawacki/EarthScope

Throughout the summer, students meet weekly with the program lead, engaging in 2-3 professional development opportunities tailored to their interests. Training covers Scientific Writing, Anti-harassment & Anti-discrimination, Elevator Speeches, Poster & Oral presentations, and CVs/Cover letters. Students draft and submit abstracts and applications for student travel scholarships to geoscience and/or STEM affinity group conferences, receiving guidance on the process and funding opportunities outside of EarthScope.

In the program’s final weeks, students present 5-minute lightning talks, which are open to the public. They also submit a scientific poster, to be used at a fall conference of their choice. 

Interns have the option to participate in a second summer of the program, during which they can choose their mentor and topic. They also engage with first-year interns, offering a unique perspective.

The program strives to reduce barriers to geoscience research participation by supporting students with limited opportunities, from historically excluded groups, or in unsupportive environments. This includes providing housing, stipends, education on professional environments, inclusive mentors, feedback opportunities, a connected cohort, and networking assistance.

EarthScope Interns at AGU (Photo: Scott Johnson/EarthScope)