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Paid Internship w/ The National Park Service

The National Park Service is currently accepting applications for paid internship positions with the In My Backyard program. These internships are part of a long-term youth outreach program initiated by Seattle Area National Park Sites. Interns (19-27 years old) spend the summer mentoring high school youth and receiving an immersive, behind-the-scenes National Park Service experience.

In My Backyard Mentor

National Park Service Internship – Seattle May 2019 – September 2019

We’re now accepting applications through March 24, 2019!

19-27 year old applicants of all educational and experiential backgrounds are welcome to apply.


As the National Park Service steps into its second century, the In My Backyard (IMBY) team at Seattle Area National Park Sites aims to increase youth engagement and continue connecting communities with national parks. The IMBY program enables IMBY Mentors (19-27 year olds) to give back to the park’s community through facilitation of youth programming for high school interns (13-18 year olds). IMBY’s youth program was developed by past IMBY Mentors with the specific goal of fostering better relationships between diverse youth and the National Park Service.

The foundation of IMBY’s youth programming is to provide a sense of belonging for young people in their shared public lands, including those who may not feel welcome or represented within the National Park Service. National Park Service staff and IMBY Mentors will help high school interns develop a sense of place within public lands, regardless of background or experience. IMBY Mentors will be the primary facilitators of the youth program which includes leading activities, discussions, and workshops that correspond with designated weekly themes for the IMBY Interns. Typically, four to five IMBY Mentors compose the IMBY Mentor team each season.


Historically, there has been a disconnect between the National Park Service and communities of color. In addition to the homogenous staff, the National Park Service is further problematized by its lack of youth involvement and inclusionary actions. This opportunity is part of a long-term project initiated by Seattle Area National Park Sites to increase youth and community engagement. IMBY is based out of Klondike Gold Rush National Historical Park – Seattle (KLSE) and is in partnership with the nonprofit Discover Your Northwest (DYNW). Since summer of 2013, KLSE rangers, interns, teachers, and volunteers have guided the program. The IMBY Intern program was created in collaboration with the IMBY Summer 2017 cohort and a Greening Youth Foundation’s Historically Black Colleges and University Intern. In IMBY 2018 summer season, four IMBY Mentors and nine interns participated in the program.


Mentors meet on Mondays from 10am-2pm, Tuesdays from 9am-5pm, and Thursdays from 9am-5pm. The program is a 20-week commitment from May through September:

– 7 weeks for IMBY Mentor preparation and professional development from May to June – 10 weeks with IMBY Interns from June through August
– 3 weeks for IMBY Mentor debrief, project wrap-up and preparation for next cohort
– Some weekend work may be required

The curriculum is designed with weekly themes and expected learning outcomes with the flexibility for IMBY Mentors to customize activities. This is an opportunity for IMBY Mentors to use their creativity and explore topics that interest them and interns.

IMBY Mentors are expected to act as professional, positive, and supportive resources for IMBY Interns. This program will cover topics that may be sensitive for some individuals so it is important that the program and its participants work together to foster a safe and welcoming atmosphere.

Along with implementing programming and mentoring IMBY Interns, duties of the IMBY Mentors may include:

– Representing the NPS at community events aimed at engaging diverse audiences – Providing front-line visitor services in the KLSE visitor center


19-27 year old applicants of all educational and experiential backgrounds are welcome to apply.


– Possess a deep commitment to serving the community and an aspiration to guide youth – Experience working with youth and/or diverse populations
– Commitment to equity and inclusivity
– Attention to detail and highly organized

– Strong project management and planning skills
– High degree of flexibility and ability to manage multiple tasks and competing priorities – Strong work ethic and high-level professionalism
– Ability to communicate effectively/appropriately
– Ability to work independently, as well as a part of a team
– Possess positive, problem-solving outlook

If an applicant does not meet all the required qualifications, professional development opportunities are available for this position


IMBY Mentors earn a $4,400 stipend distributed bi-weekly during the entirety of the 20-week commitment. Upon completion of the program, participants will have received valuable insight from NPS staff on resume building, professional development, and networking. Several opportunities to connect with federal government employees and community organizations will be available. IMBY Mentors will gain direct experience in youth outreach and education, curriculum development and facilitation, and public speaking. This is an excellent opportunity for individuals to personalize their program experience to meet their educational and professional goals.


– Develop meaningful connections with IMBY Interns, fellow IMBY Mentors, and NPS Staff – One offsite expense-paid trip to a National Park Site
– Behind the scenes insight into the National Park Service
– Hands-on experience working in a National Park Site

– Leadership experience
– Inspire the next generation of public stewards!


Interested applicants should send their resume and cover letter to by March 24, 2019. Please include any relevant experience, skills, and special interests in submission materials.


Please visit to learn more about In My Backyard