Nature Academy Summer Work & Internships

University of Michigan Matthaei Botanical Gardens & Nichols Arboretum

Nature Academy Summer Work & Internships for Students

Do you want to learn about and grow organic produce for fellow students? Discover the difference between a native and invasive plant? Build an interactive map of a garden? Create a youth-ed tour from the ground up?


Join us during the summer as part of our student staff at Matthaei-Nichols and make a difference. We’re a transformative force for social and ecological resilience through the waters and lands we steward.

General Team Descriptions

Campus Farm: The Campus Farm team is dedicated to the ecological production of food, on-farm carbon neutrality and food justice centered around food grown by students for students. Jobs include summer food production positions as well as opportunities for engaging in research or special projects.


Curation & Interpretation: students work to enhance student programs, assist with collections and research data, and public interpretation. Activities may include field GIS mapping, student outreach, interpretive media development, curation and collection management.


Development & Communications: gain high-level experience and resume-building core skills for careers in philanthropy, communications, and beyond.


Field Services
The field services team cares for our many plant collections, buildings and facilities, natural areas, turf, trails, and landscapes across four properties and over 800 acres. Students work on the following teams:
Horticulture (conservatory, greenhouses and display gardens): learn how to care for plants, collections, and display gardens under glass and outdoors. 
Facilities, equipment and landscaping: work with our facilities and landscaping team to help maintain our buildings, landscapes, hardscapes, and grounds. 
Natural Areas Stewardship: use ecological restoration techniques to care for unique ecosystems; collect native plant seeds; survey for conservation targets and threats.
Woody Plants and Trails: assist with the care and maintenance of hundreds of our trees and shrubs, miles of paths and trails, and stewardship of garden spaces.


Visitor Engagement & Education
Work with the visitor engagement team to provide great visitor experiences for thousands of visitors at the Arb and Gardens. Teams include:
Visitor Services: engage visitors through Garden Store sales, welcoming, wayfinding and special events; work with volunteers. 
Event Hosting: gain hands-on event experience through rental events, hosting garden weddings, and visitor services duties. 
Gaffield Children’s Garden: plant and maintain gardens and eco-systems; develop and staff nature play-based informal environmental education centers. 
Youth Education: help to develop and lead informal K-12 science education and nature-themed activities.


Interested? Applications will open in mid-January. 
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