Overview

Develop your scuba diving skills on this Divemaster internship in the tropical waters of both the Seychelles and Thailand. Plus choose from additional research or career experience!

Get your PADI Divemaster qualification and boost your scuba or marine conservation career when you join a scuba diving and marine conservation internship in the endless turquoise waters of the Indian Ocean, on Mahe Island and then to southern Thailand.

Underwater photo of a diver swimming next to a sea turtle

Travel to the stunning waters of the Indian Ocean and train to earn your Dive Master while contributing to vital marine research projects. Undergo an extensive training programme and gain in-depth knowledge into the marine ecosystem in Seychelles, then put this knowledge to work when you join a team to compile crucial research on tropical coral reefs and fish species.

Receive the PADI Reef Ecosystem Diver (RESD) Specialty segment of the PADI Divemaster course. This unique offering by our partner and PADI teaches you about best practices when conducting underwater coral reef surveys. This is offered to participants staying for longer than 2 weeks on the program.

In Thailand, you will work at a local dive shop having the opportunity to dive or snorkel regularly, learning about how to set up and run dives, and gain a holistic understanding of the diving industry.

Highlights

  • Taking your PADI Advanced and PADI Divemaster courses. Learning how to identify fish and coral in the Indian Ocean.
  • Learning how to identify fish and coral in the Indian Ocean.
  • Earning your PADI Advanced Open Water certificate.
  • Complete our partner and PADI’s unique qualification, the PADI Reef Ecosystem Diver (RESD) Specialty.
  • Exploring different dive sites among the tropical islands of Seychelles, searching for the incredible ‘mega-fauna’ in the area, such as sharks, rays, and dolphins. Take other extra dive courses with local dive shops.
  • Developing the techniques needed to survey coral reefs.

Photo of scuba divers on a boat

Our Award-winning Partner

Conservation Careers has teamed up with an award-winning, mission-driven organisation with a team of passionate experts across the globe who will make your experience a truly unforgettable one.

Founded in 1998, they run programs in 21 locations, in 13 countries around the world, each aligned to the 17 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals as well as the objectives of local partners. They welcome participants from all around the world and help facilitate their development into global citizens. This is how they achieve their mission of building a global network of people united by their passion to make a difference.

Their commitment to running high-quality sustainable development and experiential education programs has earned them recognition from numerous organizations such as Panthera, the Seychelles Parks & Gardens Authority, as well as Stanford, NYU, Duke, and Ohio State.

If you register your interest below, you’ll put you in touch with our partner to take the booking and to plan your trip!

To see all our Conservation Careers Internship opportunities, please click here.

Underwater photo of scuba divers recording dataEnhance your internship with Career or Research opportunities

You can choose to do only the Core Internship, or extend and specialise your experience by choosing between Career or Research internship options.

Career Internship

A career internship will give you a leg up into your career as a conservation or sustainable development practitioner. Career internships are best suited to participants who are looking to gain additional experience collaborating on impactful initiatives with our global partners.

The main focus of our career internships is for you to complete practical work at a base and then a range of virtual project work with our international partners.

Your career internship fee will cover your pre-departure support and materials, food, accommodation, training and orientation, long-term field staff, 24-hour in-country support, and project equipment. As well as:

  • pre-program training
  • three online courses endorsed by the University of Richmond
  • training on our partner’s ethics and work with the UN SDGs, your internship location and project focus
  • practical experience working in the field alongside local and international experts
  • a remote internship supervisor who’ll provide you with one-on-one support and guidance
  • a project with a partner
  • a professional reference upon successfully completing your internship
  • a LinkedIn reference and skills endorsement upon successfully completing your internship
  • access to a job portal of available roles in conservation and sustainable development
  • preference on opportunities to work for our partner
  • An employment guarantee (if your career internship was longer than 6 months).

You’ll also get the opportunity to gain insight into how projects are implemented in a variety of our career internship locations, when you meet and collaborate virtually with other career interns, and partners, across our locations around the world.

Research Internship

Are you in the process of completing a research paper, thesis or dissertation?

The main focus of a research internship is to support you in collecting and/or analysing the data that you’ll use to write up your paper. And thanks to our partner’s involvement in global conservation and sustainable development, you’ll be able to supplement your research with insights from existing datasets that were 20 years in the making.

Research internships also help you to prepare for your future career in the industry by giving you experience with field research methodologies.

Your research internship fee will cover your pre-departure support and materials, food, accommodation, training and orientation, long-term field staff, 24-hour in-country support, and project equipment. As well as:

  • pre-program training
  • three online courses endorsed by the University of Richmond
  • training on our partner’s ethics and work with the UN SDGs, your internship location and project focus
  • practical experience working in the field alongside local and international experts
  • a remote internship supervisor who’ll provide you with one-on-one support and guidance
  • support with completing a research paper or thesis
  • a professional reference upon successfully completing your internship
  • a LinkedIn reference and skills endorsement upon successfully completing your internship
  • access to a job portal of available roles in conservation and sustainable development
  • preference regarding opportunities to work for our partner
  • An employment guarantee (if your research internship was longer than 6 months).

Not to mention unforgettable, off-the-beaten-track, life-changing experiences!

Photo of divers walking out to a boat

Life On Base

A short three-minute walk from the beach, our base in Baie Ternay Marine National Park is located in a picturesque location with tropical weather. With a thirty-minute walk to the nearest village and shop, our base is in a protected and secluded area. It almost feels like we have a private beach all to ourselves (the road ends at the base). The variety of marine life makes this an amazing location – you can see a plethora of life around the island and in the sea.

Originally a school, the building has been transformed into an environmentally aware research base with classrooms for presentations, a library containing marine identification books and resources, and a recreation room to relax in after a day of diving. There are also giant hammocks (for more relaxation) and a large grassy area for volleyball. We also have party and BBQ themed nights, and enjoy film and documentary nights in the rec room cinema. Outside in the seating area, participants like to sit and play cards, or just enjoy the weather. Life on base is much like a big family and we share cooking, cleaning, and dive operation duties on a rotation basis.

Those who’ve completed their intensive survey and dive training can look forward to short boat trips to the dive sites. Depending on the weather conditions and schedule for the week, dives take place once or twice daily,  five days a week. On other days, you’ll either conduct marine debris surveys or environmental education sessions including awareness raising with the local community members, depending on the needs of the project at the time. Staff will often deliver presentations throughout the week, with study time included in the daily schedule. Days start early, with boat preparations or training, and end with dinner, followed by an evening debrief where we share with the group all the exciting things we have seen, and go through the schedule for the next day. After this, it’s time to relax, take in the beautiful sunset, and share stories. There are also a number of base dogs (who love lots of attention) to keep you company.

Being an eco-minded base, there is a recycling area on base, and planters for growing local endemic plant species, which utilise the harvested rainwater. It’s great when participants bring their own ideas and get involved with more eco-friendly practices, such as ecobricking and non-recycling storage methods.

Accommodation

See what it’s like to live off the beaten track! You’ll sleep in dorm rooms of up to eight people. The gender-separated bathrooms are shared, with showers and flush toilets. The entire building is equipped with electricity. The base has two buildings. One contains a kitchen with a dining area, and outdoor seating. The second (two-story) building consists of the volunteer dorms, kit room, staff accommodation, office and lecture room.

Transportation

We provide transfers from the airport to our base in Baie Ternay National Park, which is about an hour’s drive. The beach is very close to our accommodation so we simply walk down to the water to our waiting boat, which is available to take you out to the dive sites. There is a bus service from Port Launay to Victoria (and some other areas depending on the route). Taxis can be ordered to get to and from base and around the island as needed.

Communication

We are based in a protected natural reserve, which means that mobile signal doesn’t cover the entire area. There are spots with good phone coverage and we have a phone on base for emergencies. For high-speed connectivity and a more reliable connection, most volunteers get a local sim card when they are in the Seychelles and pay for their own data.

Meals

Sample the many flavours of Seychellois cuisine, from fresh coconut water sipped out of the fruit to green papaya salad. All food is provided by our partner and prepared by participants. Breakfast includes the usual array of eggs, bacon, pancakes, porridge and fruit. Lunch and dinner varies based on the tastes of participants at the time. Typical meals include curries, stir-fries, pastas, pies and salads. Many participants also buy their own snacks, like banana chips and dried salted fish available at the local Port Launay shops.

Climate

The Seychelles has an equatorial climate, which means sunshine and warm water all year round, with temperatures averaging 26ºC – 30ºC (79ºF – 86ºF). Tropical rainfall is common, but more frequent from October to April. The weather is warmest from September to May, and coolest in the middle of the year, from June to August (water temperatures reflect these changes too). The temperature stays high during the night – only dropping by a few degrees.

Underwater photo of a coral reef

Training

This program is an investment in your career. No matter which you choose, you will be working toward improving your employability by mastering new social skills, gaining further technical expertise and earning qualifications in many cases. Most of our staff are, in fact, Alumni, and we have helped many of our Alumni discover, move toward, and earn their own personal dream jobs. Each program includes introductory workshops, ongoing presentations, as well as on-the-ground professional support provided by our very own trained staff members. In addition, our training programs are critical for helping us to ensure the long-term impact of our sustainable development projects around the world.

FOR ALL PARTICIPANTS | COURSES

All internships include three courses (Leadership, Careers in Sustainable Development and a specialisation course) offered in partnership with the University of Richmond and the University of North Carolina at Charlotte.

FOR ALL PARTICIPANTS | ORIENTATION

Orientation: Your Health, Safety and Wellbeing

Learn about COVID-19 pre-departure guidelines, base expectations, personal and area hygiene practices and what we are doing to keep you safe.

Orientation: Travelling Responsibly and Ethically

Learn about the importance of child and vulnerable adult protection best practices and how to apply them while on project.

Orientation: UN Sustainable Development Goals

Introduction to the history and evolution of sustainable development, the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs) and how these related to your project work.

Orientation: Further Opportunities for Impact

Learn about our country locations and further opportunities available to you during or after your program.

FOR ALL PARTICIPANTS AT MAHE

Community: Human Empowerment

Learn about our empowerment principles.

Conservation: Survey Techniques and Logistics

An introduction to different survey techniques and best practice guidelines for surveys; introduction to different types of data and how to record information via a datasheet.

Conservation: Biodiversity & Target Species Identification

Learn about biodiversity and how biodiversity is measured, and classifying different species and how to identify species that indicate the health of the habitat.

Marine Conservation: Pollution and Plastics

Learn about issues with plastic and measures that can be taken to help reduce plastic consumption.

Marine Conservation: Coral Reefs

Learn about what a coral reef is, its importance, how it is formed, how this ecosystem works.

Plastic Pollution And Other Trash

Learn about the effect of waste on the ocean and what we can do about it. It is not required training but an additional presentation offered to volunteers and interns who stay for longer and have more time available.

Crown-of-thorns Starfish Removal

This is a species of starfish that is harmful to both humans and coral. You will learn how to remove these from the reef safely. It is not required training but an additional presentation offered to volunteers and interns who stay for longer and have more time available.

Coral Watch

This is a global coral monitoring methodology all volunteers can get involved with. It is separate to our main study focus with Seychelles National Parks Authority, SNPA. It is not required training but an additional presentation offered to volunteers and interns who stay for longer and have more time available.

Emergency Oxygen Therapy Orientation

All volunteers are taught how to provide oxygen to divers in varying states of consciousness.

Survey-specific Buoyancy Training

Learning how to control your buoyancy to ensure that you do not accidentally damage the reef while conducting research.

PADI Coral Reef Research Diver Distinctive Speciality

This is a distinctive specialty unique only to our partner, created in collaboration with PADI. It provides instruction on the different types of reef monitoring available, along with certain skills which are needed to ensure that you are comfortable using monitoring equipment such as tape measures and quadrats and that there is no damage done to the reef while you navigate around the site.

PADI Advanced Open Water (AOW) Certification

5 specialised dives are required to gain this qualification, those we offer include the Boat Dive, Underwater Navigation, Underwater Naturalist, Deep Diver, and Peak Performance Buoyancy. A knowledge review is also required.

Species-specific Marine Survey Techniques

Once participants are comfortable with identifying the species on site, they will be trained on the different techniques used to monitor these species underwater.

Coral, fish, or invertebrates workshops

A few weeks before arrival on the base, you will be assigned to monitoring either coral, fish, or invertebrates. This includes several presentations to introduce you to the specific species.

Megafauna

Learn to identify different types of megafauna, larger sea creatures, you might see on a dive near Mahe. You will be asked to also monitor their numbers on your dives.

Threats To The Reef

Learn what are the natural and man-made issues threatening the survival of the reefs.

Introduction To Coral Reefs

Includes an explanation of what a coral reef is, its importance, how it is formed, and how this ecosystem works.

Hazards Of The Reef

Learn which creatures pose a risk while in the water, best practices to avoid injury, and what to do if injured.

Underwater photo of a ray

Your Impact

All of our programs have short-, mid- and long-term objectives that align with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs). This enables us to report on our collaborative impact across the world in a streamlined manner, measuring which UN SDGs we are making a substantial contribution to. Furthermore, this will help our local partners and communities measure and visualise their contribution to the UN SDGs.

Prior to your arrival on base, you will be educated about the UN SDGs. Then once you arrive on base, you’ll learn about the specific goals we have in this particular location, our various objectives, and also clarification of how your personal, shorter-term involvement contributes to these.

Our aim is to educate you on local and global issues, so that you continue to be an active global citizen after your program, helping to fulfil our mission of building a global network of people united by their passion to make a difference.

Experiences

During your program, you’ll also have the opportunity to experience tailor-made adventure and wellness activities. These have been specially designed to further immerse you in the diversity and richness of the habitats and cultures around you.

  • Learn to cook traditional Seychellois Creole dishes
  • Visit the Mission Ruins at Venn’s Town
  • Paddleboard across the bay
  • Hike through lush forests and across rocky plateaus
  • Explore the ocean after dark with a night dive
  • Discover rare and endemic species of plants
  • Swim at a secret beach
  • Go fishing with local fishers

Photo of divers walking to a boat at dusk

Cultural Immersion

Engaging intimately with a new context teaches global awareness, adaptability and critical thinking – skills highly valued in the modern marketplace. Local and cultural immersion is encouraged on all our programs around the world, and will also be one of the most enjoyable aspects of your experience. Luckily, there are many different activities that you can get involved in during your free time, or before and after your program.

On our community programs, the focus is on cultural topics, while on marine or wildlife programs the emphasis is more on the environmental element. Use your evenings and weekends to explore topics like local cuisine and religion, or how sustainable development challenges are affecting local contexts.

Baie Ternay National Marine Park

Our marine research base is located in the secluded Baie Ternay Marine National Park,  a protected coastal reserve about an hour’s drive from the capital of Victoria and Seychelles International Airport. The beautiful bay area consists of coastal habitats, including mangroves, wetlands, seagrass beds and coral reefs. Among the mangroves, you’ll find species of fish, invertebrate and birds found exclusively in the Seychelles. Venture further into the water and spy green and hawksbill turtles snacking on seagrass or nesting on the beaches. Deeper in, coral reefs start to span the ocean floor. The dazzling diversity of this underwater garden will surprise you. Here you can also spot emperor angelfish, butterflyfish, octopus, white-tip reef sharks and many different kinds of rays. You might even be lucky enough to spot one of the migrating whale sharks who pass by the islands for a short time every year.

Mahe

Our partner’s marine conservation program in the Seychelles is based on the main island of Mahe – the largest granitic island in the Seychelles, surrounded by coral reef, granite drop offs, and white sandy beaches. The island rises up to forest-covered mountainous terrain with steep winding roads throughout the island. Turquoise-blue waters house expansive fringing reefs providing habitats to a staggering variety of fish and marine invertebrates. The steep shelf surrounding the islands means that along with the high diversity of reef fish, oceanic species such as tuna and sailfish are common just offshore. It’s home to the capital of the Seychelles, Victoria. Despite being the most populous island in the Seychelles, Mahe has very few inhabitants – compared to most of the urban areas international visitors are used to – and its natural habitat is very well preserved

Seychelles

The Seychelles is a tropical archipelago off the east coast of Africa, consisting of over 100 islands. The islands located near the center of the group are made of granite, and researchers believe they used to form part of the Indian subcontinent. The granite islands attracted corals to their shallower waters and most of the outer islands of the Seychelles are based on coral or sand. The islands are famous for their biodiversity and are home to literally thousands of land and underwater species. The waters of the Indian Ocean are a haven for coral conservation efforts, making the Seychelles a sought-after diving destination.

Photo of a blue, yellow and black sea slug

Duration, Dates & Costs

Duration of fieldwork: 24 weeks

Start Dates:

  • 2022 – 17 Sep
  • 2023 – 07 Jan; 24 Jun; 16 Sep

Costs: £13,545.00

Career and Research Internships have an additional cost. Please register your interest below for more information.

What’s Included

  • 24-hour emergency desk
  • 24-hour in-country support
  • Airport pick-up (unless otherwise stated)
  • All project equipment
  • Food (except on long-term internship placements)
  • Safe and basic accommodation (usually shared)
  • Group introductory call
  • Welcome presentation
  • Endorsed Specialisation Course
  • Endorsed Leadership Course
  • Sustainable project work
  • Leadership responsibilities
  • Program training
  • Remote Internship Supervisor
  • Preferential recruitment on our partner’s positions
  • Job portal access
  • Endorsed Careers Course
  • Career coaching sessions
  • PDF reference – upon request

What’s Not Included

  • Additional drinks and gratuities
  • COVID-19: Health and Hygiene Fee
  • Extra local excursions
  • Flights
  • International and domestic airport taxes
  • Medical and travel insurance
  • Personal items and toiletries
  • Police or background check
  • Visa costs

Underwater photo of scuba divers

Register your interest!

Reserve your place or ask a question