[unpaid internship]: Volunteer Field Assistants: Bioko Marine Turtle Program (Equatorial Guinea, Africa)



Location Detail: Bioko Island, Equatorial Guinea, Africa.

Term of Appointment: Oct 5, 2016 – Feb 28, 2017 (dates may vary by +2 days due to transportation availability)

Application Deadline: June 15th 2016

Job Description

Indiana-Purdue University, Fort Wayne and the Bioko Marine Turtle Program are seeking 6 volunteers to assist with research and conservation projects on Bioko Island, Equatorial Guinea. Field assistants will be based in research camps on the breathtaking southern beaches of Bioko Island, and will participate in data collection on a number of ongoing sea turtle and primate research projects. Field assistants will be expected to devote at least 40 hrs/week to the program. Due to the nature of this field research and the remote living conditions, hours are likely to exceed 40 hrs/wk. Volunteers are encouraged to participate in all aspects of field research and conservation activities including educational and outreach projects in nearby villages.

Sea turtle research is conducted nighty from 10pm – 4am and primate work will be conducted during the day. Field assistants will alternate between working night and day shifts and will walk an average of 10km/day. In addition, you will be expected to participate in all daily operations and upkeep of the research camp. We will be living in tents, cooking over an open fire, and using water from a nearby stream. Although a camp cook will be present a few days a week, everyone will be responsible for participating in activities such as meal preparation and cleanup, filtering water, starting and tending the fire, etc.. There will be no electricity or refrigeration, which limits the variety and quantity of perishable foods available. There is no internet or telephone connectivity available in the field. A Satellite phone will be available in case of an emergency. The camp will have one generator for charging research equipment, which may be used occasionally for personal items (kindles, iPod, etc). Field assistants should be prepared for physically demanding work and living conditions in a hot and humid climate.

This is an unpaid (volunteer) position but we do not charge program fees. We will provide food, local transportation and other basic costs associated with living on the island during the field season. Field assistants will be expected to provide international transportation to and from Malabo, Equatorial Guinea (generally $1800-$2200 for a round flight from US), medical and evacuation insurance, appropriate immunizations (please contact a travel medicine doctor), medications (such as anti-malarial medication, etc.) and personal camping gear. US citizens do not require a VISA to enter the country.


  • Field assistants should be at least 21 years old.
  • An ability to get along with others in a communal living situation
  • Prior field experience in biology, ecology or related disciplines.
  • A desire to pursue a career in conservation biology/ecology is preferred.
  • Spanish language ability: Spanish is the national language of Equatorial Guinea. Fluency is not mandatory for this position, but is strongly preferred.
  • Preference will be given to applicants with experience working in remote locations, living in developing countries, or extensive experience camping and hiking in remote wilderness areas.
  • Physical fitness and a positive attitude will help as the combination of work and camp life in this hot, humid environment can be physically exhausting.

How to Apply

Please send a cover letter, CV, and contact information for 2 references to Lisa Sinclair (sincem01@ipfw.edu)