Marine conservation internship in Mexico
Marine conservation internship in Mexico

Useful information

Immerse yourself in the world of marine conservation with our international environmental internship opportunity located on the Caribbean coast of Mexico, in the Yucatan Peninsula. The reefs of Puerto Morelos National Park are one of the natural protected areas that are part of the Mexican Caribbean Marine Biosphere Reserve. Benefit from an in-depth monitoring, while participating in the marine conservation of the area, through diving and data collection sessions. You will also participate in educating the community and tourists about the environmental challenges of Mexico.

Master in marine sciences
Master in marine biology
Engineering school
Veterinary school
Bachelor's/Master's degree in solidarity and sustainable development
DUT Biological Engineering


Puerto Morelos


Intermediate English

Description of the program

The biosphere reserve has a diversity of specific marine and coastal ecosystems that are unique to the Mexican part of the Caribbean Sea. As with all of our environmental internship programs, the marine conservation project in Mexico provides an opportunity to validate one's year while having a positive and lasting impact on the region's ecosystem.

internship offer international environment

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This project is one of our 'academic' internships:

It includes a more in-depth follow-up with a theoretical part that adds to the practical experience in the field. In addition to receiving the necessary ECTS credits to validate your year, at the end of the program you will obtain an international certification recognised and delivered by the University of Richmond, in the United States. You will have two online course modules to complete before the field mission, to prepare you for the project. During but also after the internship, you will benefit from professional support: a specialised internship supervisor will monitor your work and give you a final evaluation, and you will benefit from access to a portal of job offers in NGOs as well as a recommendation from your internship supervisor on LinkedIn.

Take a closer look at the specifics of this internship as an academic program, and sign up to start a sustainable career via an approved internship!

Marine conservation internship in Mexico

You will live and work in this tropical paradise with the partner organization's research team. Participants will follow a comprehensive training program designed to test and improve their diving skills and enhance their knowledge of the marine ecosystem. Theory will be put into practice as you and your team work to compile critical research on the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef, the second largest reef in the world, its local fish species, and seasonal turtle nesting surveys.

The focus will be on developing your professional skills and participants will also receive specific leadership responsibilities, a weekly evaluation from your mentor who will monitor your progress, and a professional reference at the end of the program.

You will have the opportunity to participate in underwater and land activities. This project includes laboratory tasks to reproduce coral reefs using different techniques. You will also be able to obtain exclusive team management training approved by the internationally recognized Institute of Leadership and Management (ILM).

This project works in collaboration with several governmental organizations such as the National Ministry of Fisheries of Mexico, the local fishing cooperative, local and national universities, among others. Through these partnerships, volunteers can be assured that their efforts are having a serious and measurable impact on the environment.

Your missions

Located in beautiful Puerto Morelos, the oldest porteño community in the Mexican Caribbean, this site offers fantastic dive trips! The work days can be long and tiring, but extremely rewarding. The primary purpose of the environmental internship opportunity is to assist our national partners with their ongoing marine conservation projects, specifically monitoring the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef System and coral restoration. The follow-up will be done either in Puerto Morelos or in other parts of the Riviera Maya according to the needs and follow-up schedules of our partners. Volunteers will conduct in-situ monitoring of the health and current status of the coral and fish species that are integral to this ecosystem.

In addition to reef monitoring, all of our partners are working in one way or another on coral restoration projects. Thus, volunteers will have the chance to receive hands-on training by participating in an ongoing coral reef restoration project that may include: coral cloning through fragmentation, installation of marine coral nurseries, monitoring and evaluation. The number of times volunteers will receive on-site training on the coral restoration project varies and is dependent on the needs of our partners, the ongoing project, and weather conditions.
A typical day may include diving, lab work, on-base training, community days, and beach cleanups. The days end with evening debriefs, followed by dinner and a time to relax, enjoy a beautiful sunset and share stories with your team members.


You will spend most of your time on this expedition improving your marine conservation and scuba diving skills, helping our partners with their marine conservation work. Non-divers can sign up for 8 and 12 week courses, the partner organization will provide you with the training you need to be certified to PADI Advanced Diver. The 4 weeks duration is only open to divers already qualified as PADI Open Water Diver or equivalent. For non-divers wishing to participate for 4 weeks, we can recommend local dive centers that will help you qualify before the mission begins.

Please note: the PADI Divemaster training and certification is included in the 24-week international environment internship.

Host organization

Founded in 1997, our partner organisation coordinates participatory science projects around the world. It employs 150 permanent staff in its local branches.
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These branches have already welcomed more than 20,000 volunteers in the field. It works closely with local organisations on long-term projects. They work only under the supervision of the community leaders and at their request.

Sustainable solutions, minimum impact on the environment

- Creating sustainable solutions to support self-sustaining communities.

- Ensuring access to clean water sources.

- Developing micro-enterprises around food, with a particular focus on education and agriculture.

- Supporting local schools with school supplies.

- Providing expertise and ideas on energy and electricity issues.

- Implementation of studies and educational programs on the marine environment.

Partner organisation member of the United Nations

Our partner organisation sits on the United Nations International Commission on Sustainable Tourism. All their initiatives and volunteer projects are led by experts in collaboration with the local population and national governments.

As a non-profit organisation, our conservation project is completely transparent. Volunteer contributions are used to cover on-reserve project planning (reconnaissance, team recruitment and logistical support), direct field costs (transportation, lodging, staff meals) and finally to support the project itself. Without the physical and financial help of volunteers, this project would not have been possible.


Strong points

Dive into a tropical paradise
Learning about the Mesoamerican coral reef
Taking part in community development
Obtain practical and theoretical training