Primitive Pursuits

Internship Opportunities

Why Intern with Primitive Pursuits?

As a program of Cornell Cooperative Extension of Tompkins County, Primitive Pursuits is part of two national not-for-profit organizations, in partnership with the federal government (USDA).

Primitive Pursuits is a leader in both the national wilderness awareness movement, as well as a regional effort to develop financially sustainable social enterprises; developing social change within the market place rather than relying on philanthropy and other traditional revenue streams.

Although we have been growing steadily for over ten years, we have maintained the quality of our organization with small staff to participant ratios and a high level of staff involvement in the leadership of the organization.

Working with Primitive Pursuits will provide invaluable experience on multiple levels; from cutting edge wilderness education and mentorship to small business development and project management.

Best of all you'll get the chance to be the person that every employer is looking for: a mission driven, systems thinking, independently motivated community visionary.

We have Five AmeriCorps field internship positions available!  See more details below.  All other internships are provided through Cornell Cooperative Extension and are unpaid unless interns have a summer FWS award.

Additional Perks:

  • Free housing!  You will have the opportunity to camp on our land, with access to a kitchen and hot showers. 
  • Free food!  You will have access to a Community Supported Agriculture (CSA).  This will include fresh, local vegetables and fruit.
  • Travel Allowance! You will receive a $50 travel allowance for each week of summer camp that you intern with us. 
  • Free Training and Mentorship!  Work with our experienced and knowledgeable staff, and join the 2014 internship team for an entire week before the summer to gain the tools you will need to be successful.  Gain one-on-one mentorship with our lead instructors throughout your internship.

Field Internships:

Our field Interns combine wilderness survival skill and bioregional knowledge with the most effective tools of mentoring and professional development. As part of a committed group that challenges, creates and leads together you will have many opportunities for personal growth and valuable workforce training.  Interns act as assistant instructors for our summer camps and receive training in our unique approach to mentoring youth in nature, which focuses on curiosity, play and asking questions as much or more than delivery of facts. Available internships include:

  • Assistant Wilderness Field Instructor
  • Assistant Environmental Educator
  • Assistant Camp Director

Field internships are 40 hrs per week, with 1 week of skills training and a minimum of 4 weeks of direct teaching experience. 

Non-AmeriCorps field interns may need to put down a $300 refundable deposit to hold their space for accommodations and training.  This will be returned in full upon completion of the internship.

We have FIVE AmeriCorps positions available - 

  • Each position is granted $1,200 through the Educational Award Program (EAP) after 300 hours of service
  • Please note on your application if you would like to be considered for one of these positions

Administrative Internships

Our administrative interns offer an opportunity to be part of a cutting edge social enterprise while testing your knowledge and abilities in the marketplace of the real world. You'll receive support and guidance from a team of entrepreneurial minded program leaders dedicated to building financially successful models of lasting social change. Available internships include:

  • Marketing Strategist
  • Photographer/Videographer
  • Graphic Design Artist
  • Non-Profit Administration

Administrative internships are generally 20 or more hours per week. Qualifications include ability to: understand and incorporate teaching philosophy into program delivery; maintain a positive, professional and inclusive environment; collaborate effectively with others and engage youth; promote the Primitive Pursuits nature education mission; keep effective records; and demonstrate commitment to your own professional growth. Expect a great deal of learning opportunities and a friendly, innovative work environment.

Request an Application