Work-Study and Field Internships

Contribute to a vibrant and exciting non-profit and work on skills to help you be the (mission driven, systems thinking, independently motivated) person every employer is looking for!

Friction fire. Epic games. Awareness. Laughter. Natural history. Stories and songs. Building community. Gratitude. Strengthening connection to Nature. Tree ID. Tracking.

For over 20 years, Primitive Pursuits has been a one-of-a-kind organization committed to improving the health of our planet through getting kids and adults outside and connecting with nature, themselves and each other. At Primitive Pursuits, we value BELONGING, GRATITUDE, AWARENESS and GETTING OUTSIDE!

A day at Primitive Pursuits might include:

  • Leading an epic game of capture the flag through the woods
  • Helping preschoolers navigate social-emotional skill development
  • Communicating with parents and care-givers to help bridge the gap between in-the-moment outdoor education and long-term youth development
  • Collaboratively designing innovative and exciting nature-based activities
  • Receiving mentoring from trained Wilderness Instructors, including earth-based skills and outdoor leadership

Sound like the place to be?

Apply now to join our team as a Field or Administrative Intern: contribute to the success of a thriving local non-profit while gaining skills and experience to last a lifetime!

Now looking for School Year Interns and Work Study Applicants!

Our Field Interns and Apprentices assist Instructors with youth programs (ages 3-16). They attend planning meetings, receive personal mentoring, and provide leadership and support in the fields, streams and forests we call home. Opportunities are available during the school year (with Ithaca Forest Preschool, Homeschool, and Afterschool programs).

We are also seeking a Photojournalist Intern to join our team! This position is an integral member of our marketing team and is tasked with capturing the experiences of participants each week and sharing these moments with families, prospective attendees and the world through weekly blog posts published on our website and social media.

What skills do you bring to the table?

All internships are provided through Cornell Cooperative Extension. Primitive Pursuits academic year internships are unpaid and provide extensive on-the-job training. We partner with local universities for work study and providing internships to fulfill degree requirements such as Ithaca College’s Outdoor Adventure Leadership and Environmental Studies majors.  

    Field Interns and Apprentices

    • Passion and comfort in exploring the natural world
    • Ability to work on a team
    • Strong interest in learning more about working with children in a rugged outdoor setting
    • Excitement about spending every day outdoors in the woods, no matter the weather. Curiosity is required – experience is not!
    • Academic Year: Ability to work a regular schedule in one or more of our youth programs for the duration of a program season. Staff hours for Ithaca Forest Preschool are Mon-Thurs, 8:45am-12:45pm; Homeschool hours are Thurs & Fri, 8:00am-2:00pm; Afterschool programs meet various weekdays, usually 1:45pm-4:45pm.

    Internship Application

    Internship Volunteer Application
    Local Address
    Permanent Address
    Are you over the age of 18?
    Field teaching positions will require background checks. Feel free to contact us with any questions regarding this.
    Check all that apply.
    Now, more than ever, we need nature as a balancing agent.”
    Richard Louv

    Author of 'The Last Child in the Woods'