2019 Mosaics in Science Interns have been selected.  It is a difficult decision each year, but final decisions have been made and 24 interns selected to participate in Mosaics in Science (MIS). Interns will work side-by-side with scientists and other professionals. Interns are part of bat research, bird surveys, seed collection projects, geological surveys, archeological explorations, and much more. Interns receive additional training through weekly webinars and help to share the mission of the program through this Blog. During a post-internship career workshop, participants have a first opportunity to meet other interns face-to-face and share their summer’s work during an oral or poster presentation. Guest speakers provide additional information about science careers and federal jobs.  The goals of MIS are to provide science-based internships for racially and ethnically undergraduate and graduate students, and recent graduates to increase relevancy, diversity and inclusion in the National Park Service (NPS). We also strive to promote the mission of the NPS and to support high priority natural resource management and visitor education and interpretation projects in some of America’s most beautiful places. 

Mosaics Blog

Surprise!

Where does your wastewater go? It’s not a question everyone thinks to ask (I certainly never cared to), but it’s an absolutely critical question.  Why am I asking you this? Well, as an environmental science Read more…

Hungry Hungry Island Marble

Transferring a hungry hungry caterpillar to a fresh sprig 5th instar IMB caterpillar A pupation shelf. All these containers contain an Island Marble chrysalis attached to skewer. Another pupation shelf caterpillars poop a lot. The Read more…

Air Quality Monitoring

Chiricahua National Monument has an air quality monitoring station that studies visibility and ozone (O3), nitrogen (N) sulfur (S), and ammonia (NH3) concentrations. Every week we collect the data and send the information to associated Read more…

Real-World: Collaboration

Two weeks ago, I had the opportunity to attend a workshop. Under the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative’s Pollinator Conductivity Working Group, I listened to different presentations from Fish and Wildlife (USFWS), USDA, USGS, NRCS, and Read more…

Error 404: No Data

My grandpa’s favorite saying was, “When you assume, you make an a** out of you and me.” This past week, I learned a costly lesson from making assumptions and it was a hard lesson in Read more…

Lifeboat #36542

Welcome to blog number seven as I enter my last month at Point Reyes! In this entry I will highlight a learning experience I have had. A couple of weeks ago I assisted as a Read more…

Learning to Fly

This was an exciting week for flying creatures, big and small! Early this week, Emma and I hiked out to the Bald Eagle nests that we’ve been monitoring. After an hour of slipping on pine Read more…

Calm Before the Storm

Everything at Lava Beds is deceptively calm this week. The offices and the Visitor Center have been quiet and even the wildlife seems subdued: when Emma and I went to check on the Bald Eagles, Read more…

Busy Birds

            A common issue all over the world is invasive species.  Capulin Volcano is no exception.  The natural resource crew is currently working on a project to restore the native grassland to a more pristine Read more…

Exploring Sequoia!

Greeting from Sequoia National Park! After journeying through West Texas, the Arizona desert, and navigating the 20 mile scenic drive up the winding mountain, I arrived at my internship site in Mineral King, California. Generally Read more…

Divination

Rocky’s glaciers were once incredibly massive. A mere glance at Moraine Park will tell you that. They’re small now; so small that only one, Andrews Glacier, is still technically a glacier. To be considered a Read more…

USA

This post is for future MIS interns or, really, anyone trying to get a job in the federal government.  Because anyone in the federal government will tell you that trying to get a job there Read more…

Small Town with a Big Heart

Last week was a great journey for me, I got to travel to St. Johns, Arizona where I hosted an education program for the public library. St. Johns is a community south of Petrified Forest Read more…

Bat Guano and Kindergarteners

Question: What’s scarier, giving a presentation about bats to a group of fidgety kindergarteners or climbing down a rocky trench and into a massive cave? Answer: Neither! Both are fantastic opportunities that will enrich your Read more…

Multitudes

Trails are largely experienced from two approaches: forward and reverse. Sure, differences in height can result in slight differences in how they are experienced, but those differences are minimal. Yet, these perspectives are complicated by Read more…

What a Hoot!

An unexpected adventure of my summer internship so far has been tagging along with Taylor Ellis, a park wildlife technician, for a Northern Spotted Owl (Strix occidentalis caurina) survey. The Northern Spotted Owl is threatened Read more…

Herping?

A couple years ago during a summer research program in Iowa, I met a few people who were into “herping”— the process of looking for amphibians and reptiles. I had never heard of such a Read more…

Wet and Dry Mapping

Wet and dry mapping of the San Pedro River is an initiative of the Nature Conservancy of Southwest Arizona with the added collaboration of citizen volunteers from Mexico, and the Coronado National Memorial employees. The Read more…

A Week of Learning!

This week was full of exciting firsts for me. My first time creating a splint, my first time wearing fake blood, and my first public outreach event! We had a Wilderness First Aid course this Read more…

A Little Bit about Me

Hi Ya’ll! My name is Caprice Phillips and my pronouns are she/her. This summer I am interning as a Night Skies Assistant at Sequoia National Park. I am an Arkansan born and raised in Hot Read more…

10,000 Lakes to 10,000 Saguaros

A Minnesotan at heart, I’ve seen more than 10,000 lakes – but nothing quite compares to seeing massive saguaros rising out of the desert. My name is Hannah, and I’m the Acoustics Assistant at Saguaro Read more…

Where People Come Together

In a previous post I talked about how cool it is that government agencies are the keeper of so much information about everything, including natural resources. And often, with a little looking around, you’ll find Read more…

100,000 Wading Birds

One of the Vital Signs monitored by the SFCN that I mentioned last week are Colonial Waterbirds. Birds have been a staple of Everglades ecosystem monitoring since long before our national parks were even established. Read more…

Week 6: Volunteer Training!

Last week we officially launched my social trail monitoring pilot program! During the day I was too busy to be nervous. I had incorrectly assumed that the Volunteer Management Office would have extra radios and Read more…

A Mentor with Moxie

Abby Adkins is my park ranger mentor at the New River Gorge National River. She has worked as a ranger for most of her career and still has the energy of someone in their first Read more…

History Class Outdoors

For the past two weeks, I have been at the office conducting various tasks, but more specifically, conducting background research to help me narrow down a project topic. One of the topics I researched is Read more…

The Broader Theme

I’m about halfway through my summer now and the number one thing I’ve learned is persistence. Science is such a different thing than schooling. In school, the right answer is known. In science, it’s not. Read more…

Salamanders and Hemlocks

In my time at the New River, I have learned many things about the types of visitors and education opportunities the park has to offer. However, on a ride-along with the resource management team, I Read more…

My Weekly Adventures

So far at Mt. Rainer, I have been on many adventures that will stay with me for awhile because how beautiful everything is out here. On good days any trail you take that has a Read more…

Birder Extraordinaire

Welcome to blog number five from Point Reyes National Seashore! This week’s blog will focus on introducing an influential person: my supervisor Carlo Arreglo! Carlo is an interpretive ranger at Point Reyes and has been Read more…

Tucking our Fossil Babes to Bed

Hi everyone! Week 3’s blog is of a similar melody to week 2, but the methodology we used to conserve the fossils was notably different. While plaster cradles are fantastic for providing long-lasting and sturdy Read more…

Influential Persons

This blog focuses on women because most of the time I am working with them. They are very intelligent, creative, and dedicated to what they love.  Jessica Garcia Jessica is the physical scientist of the Read more…

The Western Snowy Plover

This week’s blog will focus on something new I have learned. Given a recent outing with the park’s Snowy Plover biologist, I am excited to write about this very special shorebird than can be found Read more…

An Ode to Tourists

They’re everywhere. They’re crowding the Safeway, the local cafes, and the streets of downtown. They’re screeching to halts in the middle of the road to catch glimpses of elk and to snap a few photographs. Read more…

Gone Fishing (for Birds)

The moment you’ve all been waiting for has arrived!  As I write this blog, I’ve completed my first day of hummingbird banding training! It’s a lot of fun to capture hummingbirds, and easier than you Read more…

Bats in Southern Arizona

Since I started the internship, I haven’t stopped learning about other scientific fields different from my own. For example, I learned to work with bats. I did bat netting in the Southeast Arizona Group (SEAZ). Read more…

Influential People I Know

For me, the two most influential people I know right now is my mom and my supervisor. The first person is my mom who has been there for me all my life. She has always Read more…

Blue Mesa

Last week was a great experience boost for me since I got to meet the high schoolers from the Youth Conservation Corps (YCC) who work in the park to preserve and maintain park property. Along Read more…

The Great Walden BioBlitz

I spend a lot of my time putting together The Great Walden Pond BioBlitz (it’s on July 6th, come join us) . We’re bringing together teachers, scientists, naturalists, and the public to explore the parks Read more…

So What Am I Working On?

This summer, I am working on developing a map for conservation initiatives. There are over 4,000 species of bees native to North America itself, and each U.S. state has its own catalog of species. The Read more…

Outreach Events

World Oceans Day As one of the partners of Underwater World, the War in the Pacific park had an interactive booth on World Oceans Day. Josh, a summer intern under the PIPES program, and I Read more…

Down By the River

Minute Man National Historical Park (MIMA) sits on a historic landscape which has been carefully maintained for over two hundred years. In fact, the building I work out of overlooks the Old North Bridge along Read more…

Field Trip Frenzy

As of late, many more school groups have been taking interest in field trip opportunities here at New River Gorge National River. The ranger staff cannot handle several groups at a time, so unfortunately they Read more…

Not Just the Honey Bee

Before this internship began, I had no idea about the breadth of native bee species found in North America. Over 4000 species of bees  call North America home. Essential to the process of pollination, it’s Read more…

Dynamism

A few weeks back, I thought of national parks as static. I thought of the world around them as developing at an ever increasing pace while they stayed the same.Yet this couldn’t be further from Read more…

New Supe for You

The staff at Capulin Volcano is thrilled as our acting superintendent, Fermin Salas, has arrived on-site. Fermin has a lot of great ideas for the park and has been a very warm addition to the Read more…

My Project at Mt Rainier

My main project that I am going to be doing at Mt. Rainier National Park is guano collection, emergencies counts data, and contacting staff from other parks in the Pacific Northwest that are collecting guano Read more…

Bat, Chats, and Fun Facts

If four bat skeletons, three stuffed animals, two coloring pages, and one aggressively friendly smile can’t convince visitors to talk to you about bats, nothing can. I stock my Bat Chat table with all these Read more…

How WNS spreads

Something interesting that I learned in my internship is that there are multiple ways we can identify white nose syndrome in bats. We can DNA test there guano to see if they carry the disease. Read more…

Ice Cream Rocks!

Being in the park service has truly changed how I look at natural features in the wild along with its sheer size. Petrified Forest National Park is a big park that takes 45 minutes to Read more…

The Road to Plaster Mastery

Hi everyone! I’ve been quiet on this platform because it’s been a very busy first couple of weeks for me at DINO. I’m going to try to get a post written on my adventures last Read more…

Keying In #2: About Biscayne

Biscayne National Park, located about an hour south of Miami and nearest to Homestead, Florida, preserves Biscayne Bay, offshore barrier reefs, Elliott Key (the first Florida Key), and the northern part of the Florida Reef. Read more…

It was Dino-mite

Last week was a lot of fun because the park hosted a great event called Dinosaur Day. It is hosted on June 6 in memory of the discovery of the oldest dinosaur ever found in Read more…

Underwater Laboratory

For the past two weeks, I have been tasked to do background research on Guam’s coral reefs and start preparing a draft on a poster that will be used for future outreach events. In addition, Read more…

Rock the Rhyolite

USMP for Federal Land Management Agencies My main project during the summer will be the Unstable Slope Management Program (USMP) for federal land management at Chiricahua National Monument. This project is intended to provide map Read more…

Microbial Forests and Bat Nets

In the past week, I have had the pleasure of attending two fascinating talks here at Carlsbad Caverns National Park—Superbugs, Wonder Drugs, and Amazing Caves: Lechuguilla Cave and the future of antibiotic resistance by Katey Read more…

Memorial Day Weekend Camping

The Mojave Desert can be a hostile environment to live in, however, life continues to flourish despite extreme temperatures. Environment for the Americas organized a 2019 Memorial Day camping trip to bring together interns from Read more…

Surveying Bald Eagle Nests

“Did you know that, in movies, they rarely use the actual call of a bald eagle?” After hiking through pines trees, down a cave, over a trench, and up one of the tallest buttes in Read more…

Rocky’s Enigmatic Glaciers

This summer, in addition to assisting with citizen science projects, my focus will be on glaciers in Rocky Mountain National Park. This will take the form of an institutional memory project (a collection of scientific Read more…

A Brief History of Capulin Volcano

It dawned on me that though this is my fourth week here, I haven’t shared much about the park itself.  In 1890, inspector WD Harland of the General Land Office visited Capulin.  After his visitation, Read more…

Working in the Dark

My site is like other towns in the Mt Rainer National Park. We have bat boxes on building and structures all across the park major town and buildings. We also set up data recorders in Read more…

Introducing: The Dunes

Located along the southern edge of Lake Michigan, Indiana Dunes is the United States’ newest National Park. Formerly Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore, the Park contains some of the most abundant plant diversity in the United Read more…

Wonder and the Unfamiliar

This past Tuesday I found myself at McGraw Ranch, a complex nestled into the foothills of the Rocky Mountains. Here gentle, forested hills converge at a stream that traces the front periphery of the complex Read more…

Send Dunes

Since starting my internship at the park, I’ve come to realize there is a lot that goes to interpretation in the park service. We have done work with school and college groups to teach them Read more…

Pollen and Pecos

There are pollen slides collected from birds going back to 2014.  It’s slow work, but I’m planning to get through all the slides by the end of the summer.  Just to give you an idea Read more…

Week 1: Getting to Know the Author

Hello, my name is Aliya Khan. I am a Mosaics in Science intern working at Manassas National Battlefield Park this summer. I am originally from Washington DC but grew up abroad in Malaysia, Thailand and Read more…

Carlsbad Visitor Use Management Project

The framework starts with defining the limits of acceptable change, or the minimally acceptable conditions, then developing and carrying out monitoring studies, if the data show the park has surpassed the limits of acceptable change, then park management must take an action to address this. The cycle repeats always relying on data driven analysis.

The Scientists The Rangers Go To

Last post, I mentioned that I am the new intern at the SFCN office in Miami. You might have wondered what that meant. The South Florida/Caribbean Inventory & Monitoring Network (SFCN) is one of 32 Read more…

A River Runs Through It

Hello reader, This past week I’ve been busy laying the foundation for the project I will be working on for the rest of the summer. My end goal is to develop a sustainable citizen science Read more…

Volcano Views

With my first week at Capulin in the books, I have a pretty good idea of how I’m going to be spending the summer.  For the past few years, people in my position have worked Read more…

My Introduction to Point Reyes

Stretching along the Northern California coast and home to over 1500 species of plants and animals, Point Reyes National Seashore offers plentiful opportunities to connect with the area’s several cultures and diverse habitats. One of Read more…