HERE: Hands-On, Experiential Research Education.

Internationalization starts HERE:  Hands-On, Experiential Research Education (HERE).

We believe strongly in learning by doing. Our intensive, individually-tailored internship programs challenge students to investigate their potential in a future research career by actively making discoveries and conducting science firsthand.  Undergraduate and graduate students from universities worldwide integrate into an active research team and work alongside local academic scientists in a collaborative fashion.  Students are immersed in all aspects of a research environment – participating in field, laboratory, and analytical office work, as well as discussion groups, seminars and organizational meetings that reveal how research works “behind the scenes”.  They are expected to communicate their research findings to professional peers and are encouraged to participate in activities geared toward school-aged students and the general public.

Research Experience Program

offers short-term research training opportunities for motivated undergraduates who wish to supplement their coursework with hand’s-on experience and participate in relevant, ongoing research projects.  In addition to regular responsibilities related to monitoring programs that provide opportunities to work in different laboratories and learn multiple skills and scientific approaches, students may be linked with scientist-mentors (usually composed of a faculty mentor plus 1-2 research assistants, technicians, grad students or post-docs) and are encouraged to become semi-independent collaborators on focused projects.  The mentors and projects vary according to the developing research interests on-going at ECIM.  These experiences are open to undergraduate or post-graduate students from any academic institution, with a required minimum stay of 1 month.


Research Apprentices and Foreign Thesis Experiences

are offered to motivated advanced undergraduate and post-graduate students looking to lead original, structured research on a selected topic. Apprentices are expected to participate in a broad array of research activities derived from ongoing studies that tackle diverse sets of problems, thus gaining diverse skills and interdisciplinary perspectives. However, the majority of their time is focused on developing a semi-independent research project guided by an ECIM investigator.  The complexity of the question a student is able to tackle is time-dependent and reliant upon the student’s background.  At the end of the apprenticeship, students present their research in a short oral presentation and write a scientific paper describing their work.  These experiences are tailor-made, so as to incorporate interests/goals of the student and meet all program requirements. Research Apprenticeships are offered throughout the year, with a minimum stay of 3 months (though 5+ months is recommended)


Ocean Science Outreach Education Apprenticeships

are offered to undergraduate and postgraduate students interested in developing and implementing educational modules based on ECIM research.  With the goal of increasing ocean and scientific literacy, as well as environmental stewardship, projects may focus on outreach activities and/or dissemination of research discoveries.  To gain concrete and operative marine science research experience, students actively participate in ongoing research activities derived from diverse, ongoing projects.  However, the majority of their time is focused on developing an innovative educational project in collaboration with an ECIM investigator and education specialists from ECIM’s Interactive Educational Aquarium.  Projects range from developing practical demonstrations, engaging interactive activities, audiovisual materials, education modules for school-aged children, and press releases to designing/implementing nature education trails.  At the end of the apprenticeship, students present their work in a short oral presentation.  These experiences are tailor-made, so as to incorporate interests/goals of the student and meet all program requirements. Education Apprenticeships are offered throughout the year, with a minimum stay of 3 months.


How Much Does It Cost?

Unfortunately, we do not have fellowships for the internships and so you
provide your own support.  However, costs are very reasonable and split into 2 categories:  1) A once-off Program Fee and 2) A monthly fee.  Together, these include all laboratory and research fees, as well as housing within ECIM (but not food).  Note that these fees are the same regardless of housing useage.  Click here for current fees.

** Note:  If students are unable to obtain funding from home university or other, they can apply for an ECIM-sponsored student subsidy to help cover partial or full cost of the once-off Program Fee. Click Here to download and complete the Fee Waiver Application Form.


Quotes by Past Interns/Students

“Working at ECIM gave me the opportunity to develop both personally
and professionally.  My experiences there cemented my love of ecology
and reinforced my understanding of the ecological principles for which
ECIM is so well known.”

“Mi experiencia en ECIM me dio varios oportunidades para desarrollo personal y profesional. Llegando a ECIM para hacer una pasantilla de verano me presentó al mundo de ecología intermareal. Me enamoré del intermareal rocoso de Chile y empecé un proyecto con el apoyo de la gente de ECIM. Además, mejoré mis capacidades de hablar castellano durante mi tiempo de pasantilla. A través de mi pasantía en ECIM pude hacer contactos profesionales que mantenía por años hasta volver a ECIM!”

“Mi estancia en ECIM fue una época inolvidable. Como Europeo, cambiar de continente para realizar una pasantía es una decisión complicada de tomar. Sin embargo, desde el primer momento que llegue a la magnífica estación marina de Las Cruces supe que había acertado. La internacionalidad y la calidad de la ciencia realizada en ECIM es enorme. Y trabajar delante del Océano Pacífico? Sin palabras…”


How To Apply

Please submit a completed ECIM Application Form, a personal statement, and Fee Waiver Application Form (if applicable) as attachments to an email to  Please list in the email subject line the students name and the HERE.  We strongly encourage electronic submission of a .pdf (Adobe PDF format) document and, if possible, submit all forms and personal statement as attachments in one email.

Personal Statement: Please provide a statement of approx. ½-1 page which describes how the ECIM research experience or apprenticeship will help you achieve your professional/career goals.  If you have particular preference as to area of research or which ECIM investigator/lab you would like to work, please include in the letter.

For additional information please contact Evie Wieters: