Communications Intern

Location: Headquaters, Washington, DC
Department: Communications
Time Commitment: May 2018 - August 2018. Start - end dates and times are flexible.


Defenders of Wildlife is a national, nonprofit environmental organization dedicated to the protection of all native animals and plants in their natural communities.  Founded in 1947, Defenders is one of the country’s leaders in science-based, results-oriented wildlife conservation. Organizational priorities include protecting and restoring imperiled North American wildlife; ensuring conservation of wildlife and habitat on federal public lands, with particular emphasis on national wildlife refuges and national forests; and ensuring the adoption and implementation of a national program for the conservation of wildlife, habitat and ecosystems in the face of global warming. 


The Communications Intern will assist with the creation of media materials including press releases, talking points and editorials and perform media research. The intern will also help produce our newsletter and build our twitter following.  


Please note that this is an unpaid internship. Students are encouraged to seek funding opportunities through their schools or outside sources. We do offer transportation stipend. 


  • Draft and edit press statements, quotes and editorials on a variety of topics under the supervision of the communications specialist  

  • Research coverage of breaking news and perform media audits 

  • Use Muck Rack to find and connect with new reporters and influencers 

  • Help build the @DefendersNews Twitter following 

  • Learn how to create and implement strategic media plans 

  • Learn basics of media relations: pitching reporters, preparing experts for interviews and drafting talking points 

  • Assist the communications coordinator in the production of our daily newsletter on wildlife and conservation news 

  • Assist the communications specialist with other duties as assigned 


Education: A communications student OR a biology or environmental science student with an interest in wildlife conservation advocacy currently enrolled in school. (3rd year or below)  

Experience: Interest in communications and public affairs 

Other Qualifications:

  • Strong writing and research skills 

  • Experience with Twitter and other social media platforms 

  • Organization, critical thinking and creativity 


  • While performing the duties of this job, the employee is regularly required to use a computer and communicate with others while doing so.
  • Ability to walk in natural areas including mountainous terrain to perform field work on occasion.


Interested applicants should send an email to and reference Communications Intern in the subject line. Please include a resume, cover letter and writing sample. The writing sample can be a previously written piece for a student newspaper or blog, or you may write a sample article or oped for this application on a recent wildlife news item. 700 word limit.  

It is the policy of Defenders of Wildlife to provide equal employment opportunity to all qualified individuals without regard to their race, color, religion, national origin, sex, age, disability, or any other characteristic protected by law, in all personnel actions.


Defenders of Wildlife is a national, non-profit membership organization dedicated to the protection of all native wild animals and plants in their natural communities. Our employees work in an environment that is inclusive and honors each of our unique perspectives and backgrounds. We believe that the conservation of biological diversity is best advanced by the contributions of people of diverse backgrounds, experiences, beliefs and cultures.  We strive toward a collective goal of including all people in the conservation of our Nation’s wildlife and wild places.

All employees are required to satisfactorily perform the essential duties and responsibilities of their positions. The essential duties and responsibilities listed above are not intended to be construed as an exhaustive list of all responsibilities, duties and skills required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions of the job.