I2S Available Internships

ONLY students who meet the following criteria are eligible to apply for an I2S internship:

  • Enrolled full-time and in good academic standing at the Flagstaff Mountain campus at the time of application and at the commencement of an internship
  • Admitted as a degree-seeking student pursuing a first bachelor's degree
  • Successfully completed at least one full-time semester at NAU
  • Completed less than 75 semester hours (including transfer credits) when the internship begins.
  • International students: Check with your international adviser in CIE to determine your eligibility for employment at NAU

The application period for the Fall 2017 semester internships is August 1 - September 17, 2017.

APPLICANTS: Consult the I2S Student Information and Student FAQ pages for application advice and more information about the program. 

NOTE: To log into the application form, your NAU password must NOT have special characters such as these (?, period, [, {, }, ], |). If your password has one or more of these characters, you will need to first change your password in the NAU system.
Interested in what the application requires? This document lists the required information on the application form.


You should receive an email with your application responses.

You may apply for up to 3 internships during this application period. However, each internship will require a completing a SEPARATE application form. When you have completed and submitted your first application, you may log in again and complete the next one.  A word of advice: Be sure to tailor each application to the specific activities and expectations described for that position.

All communications or questions regarding these I2S internships, including the responsibilities, requirements, timeline, applications, and selection processes, should be directed to the Undergraduate Research Coordinator.

Spring 2017 Internships (Fall 2017 Internships will be posted by August 1)

The Internship ID number is shown to the left of the title (e.g., Sp17.001)

SP17.001: Teaching Global Diversity to Create Local Tolerance

Description of the project that the student intern will support:  My research, teaching, and community activism interests all converge on the need to teach and promote cultural and interfaith tolerance. As a medieval historian, I study and teach the "otherizing" process through which minority religious groups and identities became socially marginalized and persecuted. I also teach students to understand how religious and spiritual beliefs function in societies from a historical and anthropological perspective. I would like an intern to help me prepare, deliver, and assess a survey of World History students next spring (HIS 100 and HIS 102). The survey would poll students and ask for suggestions on learning modules, assignments, readings, or classroom activities that would strengthen their literacy in global religious tolerance and intolerance, and to help them transform their study of the history of global religious beliefs and practice into actual, practiced tolerance in their lives on campus and in Flagstaff.

What the student will DO and LEARN:  The project would develop in three stages: writing the survey, distributing it, and analyzing responses. The end project would be a new learning module, assignment, required reading, or other innovation to my HIS 100 syllabi for the following academic year. The intern would attend one or more of my HIS 100 lectures in January to become familiar with the syllabus and kind of material we cover. (The student would not need to enroll in the course). S/he would then help me research pedagogical strategies across several disciplines for teaching tolerance. The intern would then work with me to create a survey mid-semester. The student would assess the responses and present an overview of recommendations, and then help me outline a classroom change for Fall 2017. The intern will learn time-management skills; critical thinking about history and history education; how to distinguish subjective from objective language when discussing global faith and cultural communities; how to read primary sources from faith communities in the global past, including Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Buddhism, Hinduism, and indigenous communities; and how to frame discourses on religious tolerance in secular, academic, and inclusive language.

Other benefits to the student:  This internship would especially appeal to and benefit students interested in making connections to the people and institutions within the NAU and Flagstaff communities working to educate the public about tolerance generally, and patterns of religious intolerance that we may recognize in our own society.

Additional qualifications:  The intern would ideally be available on a Tuesday or Thursday, 11:10-12:25 in order to attend at least one day of the HIS 100 class.

Time commitment:  4 hours/week for 12 weeks

Faculty mentors:  Camarin Porter (History)

Intern: Lillie Delaney

SP17.002: Completing the Dryland Puzzle: Creating a Predictive Framework for Biological Soil Crust Function and Response to Climate Change

Description of the project that the student intern will support:  Drylands make up approximately 40% of the earth’s terrestrial surface, and are home to a similarly large proportion of the global human population. The large number of humans living in drylands, and associated perturbations, has led to severe land degradation in 10-20% of this area. Despite the clear importance of highly functional drylands, there are significant knowledge gaps in the determinants of dryland function, and their probable response to global change. One key, but missing “puzzle piece” in our global understanding of drylands are the roles of biological soil crusts (biocrusts) in regulating functions such as primary production, water capture, and erosion resistance. Biocrusts are consortia of bacteria, cyanobacteria, fungi, lichens and mosses that occupy the critical interface between soil and atmosphere in most drylands. Contributions of biocrusts to dryland ecosystem function are far greater than generally appreciated, but biocrusts are chronically underrepresented in syntheses of dryland function and degradation. To fill this knowledge gap we have assembled an international team of world experts, spanning a variety of disciplines, to synthesize the available data.

What the student will DO and LEARN:  The primary work for our I2S intern would be to sort selected literature by relevancy for inclusion or omission and enter the data into an Excel spreadsheet. The intern would also participate in virtual meetings with the international collaborators, and be involved in data analysis. S/he would learn the basic process of meta-analysis, from literature searches, to analysis and would also learn about the biology and ecology of biocrusts.

Other benefits to the student:  S/he would also benefit from interacting with our lab group of undergraduate and graduate students, as well as interacting with undergraduates at CU Boulder and an international team of scientists. Interacting with a diverse group of people, in all levels of their careers is beneficial to developing an identity as a scientist and to explore options for future careers.

Additional qualifications:  We would like an intern that has experience with Excel, has interest in ecology, and has taken a basic biology course.

Time commitment:  6 hours/week for 12 weeks

Faculty mentor:  Matthew Bowker (School of Forestry)

Intern: Landon Kuestersteffen

SP17.003: Native American Forests, Wildfire, and Climate Change

Description of the project that the student intern will support:  Our overall research project is aimed at assessing ecosystem services from Native American forests under future climate conditions. We are working on lands of the Navajo Nation and the Mescalero Apache Tribe test future management scenarios to enhance future ecosystem services. The objectives are (1) identify unique characteristics of forest, fuel, and fire regime on Native lands to initialize modeling; (2) simulate future forest characteristics under alternative scenarios of current and modified management systems, climate, and disturbance; (3) assess future stocks and flows of ecosystem services and values of managing for ecosystem resilience; and 4) draw implications for adaptive management strategies. The specific component of the project that the student will support is reconstruction of fire regimes in the forests using tree-ring data from samples that we have collected.

What the student will DO and LEARN:  The student will work primarily with tree-ring samples. S/he will learn the basics of tree-ring analysis (dendrochronology) and how to measure tree rings under a microscope. The intern will receive training in the use of woodshop tools to prepare samples. The data will contribute to the overall project and the skills that the student learns will be useful to them in many environmental fields. The intern’s experience and qualifications may result in receiving a job in our lab or other research labs, and/or applying for undergraduate research funds.

Other benefits to the student:  S/he will make contacts with various graduate students and faculty members. I think that knowing graduate students personally and being able to talk with them informally gives undergraduates a realistic idea of graduate studies.

Additional qualifications:  (Preferred)

• Knowledge/interest in natural resources on Native American lands
• Coursework and/or work experience in ecology, biology, environmental science, or wildland fire
• Interest in the possibility of carrying out an undergraduate research project

Time commitment:  5 hours/week for 11 weeks

Faculty mentor:  Peter Fulé (School of Forestry)

Intern: Victoria Hess

SP17.004: Milkweeds for Monarchs: Determine Suitable Arizona Milkweed Species for Monarchs

Description of the project that the student intern will support:  The monarch is in trouble! Populations have declined dramatically in recent years despite broad and intense conservation efforts. Many alternative hypotheses have been offered including habitat loss, agricultural practices, pesticides, and climate change effects on population biology and insect/host synchrony. While the science community investigates and debates these alternative ideas there is opportunity for citizens to engage the conservation effort by small scale changes in gardening. If we only knew which milkweed species grow best and are the best monarch hosts at each of the many microsites across the wide range of sites in central Arizona we may be able to improve conservation efforts and increase Monarch populations in Arizona.

What the student will DO and LEARN:  The student, faculty advisor (Hofstetter), and emeritus faculty (Mike Wagner) will continue our online open data reporting system where citizen volunteers enter information at any time and in any format about their milkweed plants. The online site will prompt the entry of specific information on three occasions at about 1 month after planting (April). These monthly reports will ask specific questions about how well the plants are growing, evidence of flowering, pest insects and whether monarchs are present, how many insects, what size, etc., for each of the four milkweed species. The goal of this data collection is to ask the coarse scale ecological questions of whether the plants are doing well and do the monarchs utilize them. This coarse scale approach will help formulate testable alternative hypotheses for future projects. The student will communicate with online users, visit garden sites with Hofstetter and Wagner, learn to give presentations on Monarch conservation, and help develop further methods for Monarch conservation and science research.

Other benefits to the student:  The student will learn much about Monarch biology and conservation, have hands-on experience working with a high-profile citizen science project, and benefit from spending time with emeritus faculty Mike Wagner, former Forest Entomology professor at NAU. The student will be able to co-author reports, grants, outreach documents, presentations, and scientific publications related to the project.

Additional qualifications:  Willing to work with the public; be comfortable working online and with websites. Some experience (courses or research) in biology, conservation, or entomology.

Time commitment:  4 hours/week for 10 weeks

Faculty mentor:  Richard Hofstetter (School of Forestry)

Intern: Emelia Lawrence

SP17.005: Paleoecology of Tuzigoot National Monument, Verde Valley, Central Arizona: Plant Macrofossils from Pecks Lake

Description of the project that the student intern will support:  In summer 2016 an international team of researchers collected a series of sediment cores from Pecks Lake, near Tuzigoot National Monument in the Verde Valley of Arizona. The purpose of this project is to determine specific impacts of different human societies that have lived around the lake during the last 2000 years. These societies include the Sinagua culture that built the Tuzigoot pueblo and farmed near the lake over 1000 years ago and the Europeans that settled and ranched the area beginning in the late 19th century. We can determine these impacts through the study of various plant and animal remains that have accumulated within the lake sediments. Each society will leave a different record of their collective impacts.

What the student will DO and LEARN:  The student will learn current laboratory procedures including how to sample sediment cores and how to process sediment samples to extract plant macrofossils and charcoal. Depending on the time available, the student will also learn plant macrofossil and charcoal particle identification from these sediment cores. Ultimately, the student's results will be incorporated into peer-reviewed publications, where the student will be a co-author on any articles that come out of this research.

Other benefits to the student:  The student will become part of an international team of researchers. Ultimately if the student were interested in international academic study, this project could be a vehicle towards spending a semester at a specific cooperating universities as part of the Study Abroad program through Center for International Education at NAU. This opportunity is not guaranteed, of course, and would depend upon the goals of the individual intern.

Additional qualifications:  There are few qualifications for this intern other than an interest in finding out more about how to do paleo-ecological research and a commitment to accomplish the work-plan. It would be helpful if the student had some background in environmental science, biology, or geology.

Time commitment:  6 hours/week for 12 weeks

Faculty mentor:  R. Scott Anderson (SESES)

Intern: Anthony Mirabito

SP17.006: The Culture of Sexual Violence on Campus: The Role of Masculinity, Male-dominated Groups, and Pornography

Description of the project that the student intern will support:  Sexual assault on college campuses around the United States has become an alarming public health issue. One in five female students will experience sexual assault during their academic career (Krebs, Lindquist, Warner, Fisher, & Martin, 2007). This project aims to assess how factors unique to college campuses interact with masculinity and impact sexual assault on campus. There is a growing body of literature devoted to campus sexual assault and factors that contribute to it, but a gap exists in our understanding of the relationship between masculinity and the college environment and its impact on sexual violence on college campuses.

What the student will DO and LEARN:  At the end of this semester, moving into the beginning of Spring, I will be disseminating a survey on sexual violence on campus. The undergraduate hired through the I2S program would be an integral part of the research. S/he would act as a consultant on the topic of college environment. This is critical since s/he lives in the world I study and would have impactful insight into gender roles and pornography consumption amongst college students. The intern would work with me closely to understand the survey data, and one primary task would be to clean and organize the data in SPSS (with oversight). The student would also conduct a thorough literature review of research in the past two years. After I have analyzed the data, the intern would be involved in the discussion of how our research applies to past literature and what benefit it has for the topic area and discipline. If the student elects to continue work on the project after the semester, I would help facilitate attendance at a national academic conference.

Other benefits to the student:  I hope the intern/scholar would be in a position to better understand their social environment and how that environment influences sexual assault. S/he will build the skills needed to be an advocate for campus sexual assault victims, and will be linked into all the prominent university, student, and community groups the work in this area. I would love for the intern to become an active member of the community that seeks to understand and prevent campus sexual assault. S/he will also gain valuable quantitative research and victim advocacy skills to apply towards her/his resume or vita.

Time commitment:  4 hours/ week for 11 weeks

Faculty mentor:  Brooke de Heer (Criminology & Criminal Justice)

Intern: Gia Hoegh

SP17.007: The United Farm Workers in Washington State

Description of the project that the student intern will support:  Conducting research on the United Farm Workers in Washington (UFW-WA). I will visit two archives that hold archival material on the UFW-WA, one, the special collections at the University of Washington, and two, the Walter Reuther Labor Library at Wayne State University, Detroit, Michigan. Ideally, and as a strong educational experience, I would prefer the intern to travel with me to learn and understand the process of archival research. However, if this is not possible, I will engage the intern with the materials I have already gathered. The final goal of this project is a book publication.

What the student will DO and LEARN:  The student will conduct archival research with my guidance and learn 1) why archival research is important as a primary source for scholarly work; 2) how to develop a plan to conduct research at local, regional, national, and international archives; 3) how to navigate an archival repository; 4) how to convert archival material into a scholarly publication.

Other benefits to the student:  My goal and intention for the intern is to encourage the intern to pursue graduate studies and introduce them, early in their academic career, to possible avenues for scholarly work and possible fields of study.

Additional qualifications:  Have some experience (e.g., at least one class) in ethnic studies, women's studies, civic engagement, and/or applied indigenous studies.

Time commitment:  6 hours/week for 12 weeks

Faculty mentor:  Jerry Garcia (Ethnic Studies)

Intern: Alexis Holguin

SP17.008: Farming in the D: Urban Agriculture and Black Self Determination in Detroit

Description of the project that the student intern will support:  Farming in the D is a book project that will be in the middle stages next semester. The project describes the ways in which Black urban farmers in Detroit use agriculture and grassroots place-shaping to "make-do" in an economy that is structured against them. It also examines the ways that farmers use agriculture to envision alternate economic and urban structures.

What the student will DO and LEARN: 

  1. Learn an enormous amount about Detroit, the city's current situation, and its history of activism
  2. Learn how to do (and then actually do) scholarly research including examining current research on Detroit, census data, and some policy research
  3. Learn about, and then help me with feminist interviewing methods, including semi-structured interviews
  4. Possibly travel to Detroit to do some of the above research.

Some of the interviews and communication with Detroit farmers will likely take place over Skype, which I would like the intern to attend as well.

Additional qualifications:  Have some experience (e.g., at least one class) in ethnic studies, women's studies, civic engagement, and/or applied indigenous studies.

Time commitment:  4 hours/week for 12 weeks

Faculty mentor:  Jessi Quizar (Ethnic Studies)

Intern: Sue Lemos

SP17.009: Gender Bias in Political Science's Monkey Cage Blog

Description of the project that the student intern will support:  In 2007, a group of political scientists started a blog called The Monkey Cage with the goal of deciphering current politics in an informed yet accessible way. A few years later, the blog broadened its audience when it began appearing in the Washington Post newspaper. In several early posts, the blog focused on the issue of the gender gap in political science including the infrequency of citations given to females and the underrepresentation of women in tenured professorships. In illuminating this problem, the blog opened itself up for critique. That is, does TheMonkey Cage blog practice what it preaches? Do they promote political science research on their blog equally for men and women? In order to determine if the blog is biased, an intern would examine a sample of posts to determine whether more male or females are authors. The intern would also determine if the scholars cited within the posts are more likely to be male or female. This research is significant because The Monkey Cage blog is arguably the most visible image of the discipline. Therefore, it is important to know whether the public face of political science is promoting male and female research equally.

What the student will DO and LEARN:  The student will collect data from The Monkey Cage blog beginning September 15-December 8, 2015. These dates coincide with the previous research so that the results can be compared. The intern will learn how to use a newspaper database. The student will collect information from each day's blog posts such as who authored the posts (male or female) and who was cited within the posts (male or female). The intern will use Excel or a similar program to organize and enter the data. Therefore the student will learn to collect and code original data and use Excel. The intern will also be required to hypothesize about the results and analyze the data they collected using Excel.

Other benefits to the student:  The student will also gain an understanding of implicit bias in general and hopefully gain insights into their own implicit biases. Regardless of the results of the data collection and analysis, the intern will learn that we have unconscious biases simply by engaging in the work of this study. By thinking about gender, and hopefully other types of bias, the student will have opened their mind to understanding bias which is one way we can curb its effects.

Time commitment:  6 hours/week for 12 weeks

Faculty mentor:  Marija Bekafigo (Politics and International Affairs)

Intern: Kathryn Boyle

SP17.010: Mitigating the Syrian Refugee Crisis?: Truth, Consequences, & Regional Security

Description of the project that the student intern will support:  Since 2011, the Syrian Civil War has claimed approximately 400,000 lives and led to a refugee crisis not only affecting Syria’s neighbors, but Europe and other Western states. The UN estimates that 6.5 million people have been displaced within Syria, while more than 3 million have fled to neighboring states. This forced migration of refugees as a result of civil war has created political, social and security concerns that must be addressed in order to mitigate the long-term effects of the civil war for all involved. Therefore, this paper asks the question: What role can the international community have in mitigating the crisis? Accordingly, I propose a holistic approach that addresses the environmental causes of the conflict and advocates for a peace-building strategy incorporating local, regional, and international actors. This is a paper that I plan to build into a book proposal during the 2017 calendar year.

What the student will DO and LEARN:

  1. The intern will conduct research on the science behind the drought of 2007-2010 in Syria and examine the impact on the Syrian population.
  2. The student will learn about Syrian domestic & regional politics from me and through conducting research about the Assad government's response (or lack thereof) to the aforementioned drought and the subsequent civil war.
  3. The student will learn about governments' responses to the Syrian refugee crisis since 2011, including international law's position on refugees, and immigration policies.
  4. I will teach the student how to comb through large amounts of literature on multiple topics and build a comprehensive literature review of books, journal articles, websites, blogs, and interviews. The student will be able to work on their writing skills to write concise, argumentative analysis.
  5. If the student so desires, I would assist the student in developing their work for publication or (potentially) be included as an author on one of my papers.

In sum, this internship will offer the student an opportunity to engage in work that will prepare them to do well in their upper-division classes or see if a career doing research is of interest. More importantly, the student will develop skills to succeed as a critical thinker the rest of their life.

Other benefits to the student:  The student will learn about US & Russian foreign policy toward the Middle East. The intern will also learn about the tremendous impact climate change has had on our world. Finally, the student will learn how to identify gaps between policy and practice.

Additional qualifications:  Familiarity with issues related to climate change. A knowledge of environmental science would be a huge plus, as I am a political scientist with knowledge of the policy side and not the science side of the issues.

Time commitment:  5 hours/week for 12 weeks

Faculty mentor:  Paul E. Lenze, Jr. (Politics & International Affairs)

Intern: Fernanda Soto

SP17.011: Playfulness, Friendship Experiences, and Happiness among Emerging Adults

Description of the project that the student intern will support:  Our lives start with play. We spend most of our time during childhood and adolescence in play but something strange happens later. We find less time to play while spending more time for work or courses. Playfulness as a personality characteristics has been relatively ignored in the literature. Only in the last five years the literature observed a surge of interest on the topic because there are studies linking playfulness to creativity, and happiness, a marker of mental well-being that has implications for health behavior as well. Yet, there are two important questions that need to be addressed in this growing literature. 1) Does playfulness predict happiness above and beyond personality? If it does, it would mean that Playfulness is not redundant with personality and could open new lines of inquiry. 2) We propose that friendship experiences could explain why Playfulness is related to happiness. Our reasoning is based on the idea that playful individuals might find a number of unique ways to establish and maintain their friendships, which in turn contribute to their happiness. The data for these two studies are already gathered (N = 1900). The intern would support the project by conducting an in-depth literature review, learn from me as we perform the analyses, and s/he would join me in writing up this study for publication (s/he would be writing some of the sections under my supervision). The outcome of this project will be submitted at the NAU SBS Annual Poster Symposium and will be submitted to Journal of Happiness Studies in May, with intern as a co-author.

What the student will DO and LEARN:

  • How to be collegial and basic education about e-mail etiquette
  • Basic information about the publication process
  • How to conduct literature search
  • How to read sources and get what is essential
  • Conducting statistical analyses
  • How to write a manuscript (stages, letter to the editor, revision process).

Other benefits to the student:  Learn about the basics of research while establishing writing, critical thinking, and presentation skills

Additional qualifications:  Must be enthusiastic about research and interested to learn about the topic

Time commitment:  6 hours/week for 12 weeks

Faculty mentor:  Meliksah Demir (Psychological Sciences)

Intern: cancelled

SP16.006: Environmental Changes Inferred from Alaskan Lake Sediments - CANCELLED

Description of the project that the student intern will support:  Sediments that accumulate in lakes can be studied to infer how the environment around them has changed over thousands of years. Our existing lake-sediment samples from Alaska contain a variety of biological and physical materials that can be analyzed to reconstruct past environmental and climatic changes, and they contain volcanic ash layers that attest to the frequency of prehistoric eruptions. This research will be integrated into a regional network of similar climate-related records to help understand large-scale, long-term climate variability in the North Pacific region.

What the student will DO and LEARN:  The intern will sample existing Alaskan lake sediment cores and use one or more of several methods, depending on their interest, to analyze changes through the sequence and back through time. This will be a great introduction to lab methods for students interested in scientific research.

Other benefits to the student:  This project will provide experience in aspects of scientific research from sample collection through data analysis. The intern will gain experience in experimental design, interpreting sedimentary sequences, and laboratory protocols.

Additional qualifications:  One or more earth or environmental science courses and knowledge of basic lab safety is recommended.

Time commitment:  6 hours/week for 12 weeks

Faculty mentor:  Darrell Kaufman & Katherine Whitacre (SESES)