Seasonal Education Assistant

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Prudence Island, RI
United States

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About Us

The Narragansett Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve (NBNERR) is located on Prudence Island in Narragansett Bay, Rhode Island and is one of 30 Reserves in the National Estuarine Research Reserve System (NERRS).  This is a network of protected areas established for long-term research, education, and stewardship.  This partnership program between NOAA and the coastal states protects more than one million acres of estuarine land and water, which provides essential habitat for wildlife, offers educational opportunities for students, teachers, and the public, and serves as living laboratories for scientists. Prudence Island is only accessible via passenger ferry and has no commercial development; there are approximately 120 year-round residents although the summer population swells to over 1,500. 

Primary Job Responsibility

NBNERR is recruiting to fill two full-time seasonal educator positions.  This is an excellent opportunity for an individual looking for hands-on experience in environmental education, including curriculum development. In particular, candidates with a clear idea of the skill sets they wish to enhance can benefit tremendously from this experience as the off-season provides the opportunity to pursue those skills (i.e. curriculum development, video and social media development, citizen science engagement, etc.). The ideal candidate will possess a personal interest in estuaries and the marine environment, and a commitment to the mission of the organization. This position will require working closely with the Education Coordinator in all components of the education program, primarily developing and leading a suite of classes (strong focus on marine science) for a variety of audiences. These positions will be filled through the Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management.

Job Description

  • Assist the Education Coordinator with the development and implementation of marine science and environmental education programs for summer camps, K-12 classes, homeschool families, scouts, and the general public
  • Create unique, themed lesson plans for recurring groups of students on a monthly basis
  • Develop and lead summer educational programs, ranging in length from 2 to 6 hours, for both kids and families
  • Increase the Reserve’s presence on social media (Instagram & Facebook)
  • Engage with the public at our Learning Center and Estuary Education Shed
  • Assist with maintenance of several aquariums and a touch tank (stocking, cleaning, feeding)
  • Maintain all equipment and supplies needed for programming
  • Assist with organizing community events and teacher training workshops as needed
  • Assist with land management and/or ecological research & monitoring projects in the field as needed
  • Perform other duties relating to the organization’s goals and mission as required

*Due to uncertainties with the ongoing COVID situation, some tasks may be modified.


  • B.A. or B.S. in marine science, biology, environmental sciences, education, environmental education, or a related course of study
  • Demonstrate enthusiasm for teaching science-related topics and preferably have marine science and/or teaching experience
  • Safely manage program participants in an outdoor environment
  • Public relations and communications skills: outgoing, helpful and positive personality; ability to work well with children and adults including giving presentations; maturity and leadership abilities; ability to handle sensitive situations in a tactful manner
  • Flexible and able to adapt to an ever-changing work environment with challenging logistics
  • Ability to take initiative and be creative with unique programming needs
  • Ability to work well independently and as part of a small team
  • Knowledge of New England natural history, wildlife, and marine environment is a plus
  • Applicant must possess a valid driver’s license and a good driving record
  • Comfortable working in the outdoors, including in and around shallow water, in sometimes physically demanding conditions (heat, biting insects, etc.)
  • First Aid/CPR certification is required
  • Willingness to follow all COVID-19 precautions, including mask wearing, hand washing, and supporting children in health and safety precautions.

Time Requirements  

There are two positions available, each running from approximately mid-May to mid-September, with the option to extend for 2 additional months. Undergraduate students are encouraged to apply and will be considered for a shorter period to coincide with academic scheduling. Schedule will typically be 5 days/week or 40 hours/week; a willingness to work weekends, holidays and some evenings is a must.


$12.50 per hour; housing in a 3-bedroom cottage is available at the Reserve on Prudence Island at no cost, as well as a monthly ferry ticket allowance. For staff living on the mainland and commuting daily to/from the island, ferry tickets will be provided. Please inquire for further information on housing and island logistics.

How to Apply:

Priority Deadline is February 28, 2022; remains open until filled.

Please email a cover letter, resume, and three references to:

Maureen Dewire, Education Coordinator