Youth Conservation Interns

Meet the future of the conservation movement.

Hannah Weiss, Education and Conservation Fellow. Photo: Rae Bronenkant / Audubon Vermont

Audubon Vermont has long had a robust internship program. As a result of our recent Maggie Walker grant, our internships are now paid, making our the program more accessible to students from all economic backgrounds. We hire nine college-level students each year to work as interns alongside professional Audubon Vermont staff for a semester. They receive hands-on experience in environmental education, conservation, or policy work.

All of our interns are encouraged to remain connected to the program through Audubon Vermont’s new Intern Alumni Group. After they complete their internships, students can assist with future trainings and will be a part of National Audubon Society’s network of conservation leaders.

Check out our current internship opportunities here!

Current Audubon Vermont Interns

Click on the links below to learn more about our Audubon Vermont interns and read their stories.

Sofia Benito Alston
Environmental Policy Intern, Spring 2021
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Sofia was born and raised in Madrid, Spain and moved to Vermont a couple of years ago. She is a senior at the University of Vermont studying wildlife conservation, with a focus on both science and policy and a minor in chemistry. She has always had a love for the outdoors and has made sure to have a hobby for every season of the year, whether it’s hiking, kayaking or skiing. Anything to get her out of the house and moving around. Sofia is excited to gain experience on how non-profit policy works alongside the legislature and the roles the science and education branch have within that. 

Alexander Cotnoir
Engagement Intern, Spring 2021
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Alexander’s passion for STEM education is rooted in his home in theNortheast Kingdom of Vermont where a love of nature, hiking, and hunting alongside his grandfather created a passion for wildlife conservation, ecology, and agriculture. As a Dartmouth College undergraduate, he served as a teaching assistant for ecology and writing courses and worked in the university’s rare books and archives collections to explore his interest in regional history. As a member of the Nulhegan Abenaki Nation, Alexander is particularly passionate about exploring the ways in which Indigenous communities relate to Vermont’s landscapes. After graduating with a degree in Environmental Studies and a concentration in Native American Studies, Alexander has worked in outdoor educational programs across Vermont and more recently at the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute. His experiences working with programs helping first-generation students prepare for collegiate social and academic pressures have informed his passion for supporting students who struggle to find their place in academics. In his spare time, he is training for his first marathon, publishing athesis on migratory warblers, and honing his harmonica playing skills.

Caroline Crowell
Environmental Policy Intern, Spring 2021

Articles by Caroline
Caroline is from Chatham, New York, where she grew up spending time outdoors hiking, biking, and skiing. Her love of nature has only grown since then, and she is now an undergraduate student at Barnard College studying environmental sustainability and political science. She is excited to be a part of the Audubon VT policy team, an opportunity that combines her passion for conservation and politics. Caroline loves spending time outdoors, playing with her dogs, and ski racing on the Columbia ski team (during non-Covid times!). 

Kaitlin Fackler
Engagement Intern 2021
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Growing up in Loveland, Ohio, Katie and her family developed an interest in bird watching after their small feeder became overwhelmed by a growing avian community, and was upgraded to a 12ft bird buffet by her Dad. As new birds began to visit, Katie developed an interest in their names, habits, and migration patterns, leaning on Audubon's resources to help her learn. After she began her undergraduate career at the Ohio State University in 2017, she took classes from economics to acting, in an attempt to find her “true calling”. It wasn’t until after she signed up for the Ohio birds class in her sophomore year that she realized how much she enjoyed learning about nature. She immediately entered into the environmental science major with a specialization in ecosystem restoration and joined the Society for Ecological Restoration at OSU where she serves as club secretary. Katie aspires to build a career designing environmental education resources, available in a variety of learning styles, to reach people of all demographics and ages interested in nature and science, following her graduation in the Spring of 2021. 

In her free time, Katie enjoys reading, crafting, baking, hiking, and spending time with her friends and family.  

Ciara Fagan
Education Intern, 2020-21
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View articles written by Ciara
Ciara Fagan was a ten-year-old growing up in New Jersey when she declared that her future career would be, “environmentalist”. Since then she has worked towards this goal through attending marine biology camps, fighting for compost at her high school, attending climate marches, and now interning with Audubon. Ciara is in her fourth year at UVM studying Environmental Studies with a minor in Human Development and Family Studies. As her view of what being an “environmentalist” has shifted and evolved, Ciara has gained interest in being an environmental educator and specifically exploring integrating environmental education within the community and strengthened sense of place, as well as reaching audiences that have not traditionally been included in the environmental education field and broadening this accessibility.

Ciara is excited for to opportunity to put her interests and enthusiasm to work at Audubon this spring and looks forward to learning even more about what roles environmental education can play in building community. In her free time Ciara can be found birding, baking, doing crosswords, hiking, and painting.


Intern Alumni

Explore stories from our past Audubon interns.

How you can help, right now