The American Academy of Underwater Sciences and Our World Underwater Scholarship Society have joined forces to offer a experienced-based summer scientific diver training internship since 2010. This training internship was renamed in 2015 in honor of Dr. Lee H. Somers who was the founding Director of the OWUSS and the first President of the AAUS. A second research internship was added in 2018, funded by Chuck and Kathy Mitchell. Both of these internships provide students with the experience and opportunities necessary for a future in science, diving for research, or scientific diving-related fields. Intern applicants can be students from colleges and universities with an interest in science and diving. The program runs primarily from mid-May through August at one of several AAUS organizational member sites.
The Dr. Lee H. Somers Scientific Diving Internship is geared toward a diver who has not yet received AAUS science diving training. The AAUS training course will be offered during their internship period. This training will give the intern the necessary dive qualifications to allow participation on research projects requiring scientific diving and introduce the student to careers that utilize scientific diving as a tool. Once trained as an AAUS-recognized diver-in training, interns will participate in underwater field-work at one or more locations and research facilities associated with AAUS.
The Mitchell Scientific Diving Research Internship is geared toward an undergraduate who is already trained as an AAUS scientific diver. The internship will provide opportunities to participate and assist in scientific diving with an AAUS Organizational Member. Daily activities may include planning scientific dives, preparing dive equipment, assisting in scientific diver training, participating on research projects, spending time on research boats, diving, interacting with divers, and logging dives. The program has a great degree of flexibility. The internship may include advanced training in Scientific Diving Program Management. This will provide greater insights into operational standards, proper dive planning and documentation, and operation and maintenance of equipment and facilities.