The Wildlife Technician Program (WTP) is a competitive internship program offering high school students the opportunity to undertake a three-year research project in the natural sciences. Our innovative and far reaching program is the first of its kind in the New York Metropolitan area offering an extra-curricular high school program in ecological research. Our students conduct hands-on field experiments, learn first-hand about the complexities of natural systems and receive expert guidance from Mianus River Gorge staff, graduate students, and professional partners to produce high-level research studies with significant applications to natural resource management. The WTP program has been designed to complement the State University of New York Science Research in the High School (SRHS) curriculum and accompanies our Research Assistant Program (RAP) which provides assistantship grants to graduate-level students studying applied suburban ecology.
Students start in the spring of their sophomore year. Along with a staff or RAP mentor, they develop a research question and methodology and typically collect data in the field in the summer between their sophomore and junior years. During the school year they prepare manuscripts, compile relevant literature, and organize data. The junior-senior summer is used for additional field work (if needed) and to analyze their data. In their senior year they finish their project manuscript and enter local science fairs (Intel, JSHS, etc.).
Through independent study, many of our students develop a passion for ecological research and plan to continue higher-level studies in the natural sciences. Our WTP students have been recognized in the scientific community and have received numerous awards including WESEF and JSHS prizes, Intel Finalist Awards and a First Award at the Intel International Finals. A few students have co-authored scientific journal articles with MRGP staff scientists. More importantly, our program provides our students with the skills to think innovatively and critically about environmental issues.
Apply to WTP (September 1 to November 15 each year)