Competitive Summer Internship and Industry Placement with $2,000 bursary – Cairns/Townsville/Mackay

How would you like to join forces with an award winning university and industry partnership for a unique career-enhancing opportunity in marine science and environmental management?

James Cook University’s TropWATER and North Queensland Bulk Ports Corporation (NQBP) are offering a one-of-a-kind opportunity for just two JCU students (undergraduate, honours or post-graduate) who are interested to pursue a career in marine science or postgraduate research.

What’s on offer

  • A four-week industry-research placement with JCU and NQBP
  • A bursary of $2,000 to help fund flights/travel during the internship
  • One week accommodation in Mackay will be covered by NQBP during the placement
  • Guidance from JCU and NQBP staff during a research and industry application experience. Dates are flexible but the internship will consist of four weeks generally during the semester two and three breaks between November 2021 and February 2022 and during the first half of 2022.

The good stuff

Applicants will gain:

  • Invaluable knowledge in field, laboratory, desktop and administrative skills within a research environment with the Seagrass and Coastal Ecology Group in Cairns and the Coastal Catchments and Water Quality Group in Townsville. These placements will take place over three weeks, with timing and location flexible depending on student location.
  • A one-week placement with NQBP in Mackay
  • Experience for a research and management career or a higher degree in marine biological sciences, as well as offering a unique opportunity to see how results of research are applied in management and operations within industry.

Who can apply:

You must be enrolled in either a second or third year undergraduate course, an honours or post-graduate program at James Cook University.

I’ve heard enough, how do I apply?

Applications close 18 October 2021. To apply, submit a cover letter (maximum one page) describing why you want participate in the program and what skills you can bring to TropWATER and NQBP. Attach your resume (maximum two pages) including contact details for two academic referees and a copy of your academic transcript. Students will be selected based on their academic credentials and application letters.  ATSI and women in STEM applicants are strongly encourage to apply.

Applicants will be notified of outcomes by 5 November 2021.

Submit your application to A/Prof Michael Rasheed: or Dr Nathan Waltham:

For more information about TropWATER:                

Student research projects available at TropWATER Cairns

JCU TropWATER in Cairns has a number of student research projects available for honours, masters and PhD students including:

  • Understanding resilience of large persistent seagrass species to low light conditions
  • Investigating next-gen 3D photomosaic for coral assessments
  • Photomosaic mapping for seagrass monitoring
  • Response of seagrass ecosystems to herbivory
  • Building coral reefs
  • Understanding ecosystems using citizen science
  • Fish communities in deep-water seagrass meadows

Contact Tim Smith ( for more details

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