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Career Advancement

Student holds a yellow wild flower in his hand and attempts to capture an insect in a sampling container. six students stand around discussing a pinecone in the center of them.

Welcome to the Career Advancement page, here you can find resources to help navigate your career no matter what stage you are in. This page offers resources for exploring ecological careers: student programs, graduate school, and certification and training resources.

Exploring Ecological Careers


Student Opportunities

Scientists in ParksScientists in Parks logo

The National Park Service (NPS), the Ecological Society of America and several other non-governmental partners bring together decades of experience to support undergraduate and graduate students, and recent graduates through the Scientists in Parks (SIP) Program. Every year, the SIP work experience program places hundreds of aspiring professionals across the National Park System to work on natural resource management needs. 

ESA-USGS Summer Cooperative Fellowship Program

Students apart of the USGS summer fellowship hike up a rocky landscape.

The Ecological Society of America is pleased to partner with the US Geological Survey to offer summer internships to outstanding field-trained undergraduates for whom the experience would be transformative. The ESA-USGS Cooperative Summer Fellowship Program was established in 2018 to complement the USGS longstanding NAGT/USGS internship program.  The agency is now seeking to expand the program to students trained in biological or ecological field methods. 


PlantingScience is a learning and research resource, bringing together students from grades 6-12, plant scientists, and teachers from across the nation. Students engage in hands-on plant investigations, working with peers and scientist mentors to build collaborations and to improve their understanding of science. Student groups are mentored by scientists online as they complete an inquiry-based curriculum in their classroom. Managed by the Botanical Society of America. ESA is a Scientific Society partner.

Each year, ESA’s Education Section sponsors the Master Plant Science Team of graduate students. Applications open around June each year.


Graduate School 


Masters and PhD programs can be found at the various sites below. 

Graduate schools tips

Go to this webpage to explore tips on how to apply and get into grad school

Apply and Get into Graduate School


Student squats on a boat and holds a lobster in his hand as people watch behind him.