Max Internship

Connecting rising leaders of color with conservation careers.

Land connects us all. However, the benefits of land conservation have not been distributed equally. Although nearly 40% of North Carolinians identify as a person of color, the conservation sector remains overwhelmingly white. We acknowledge land conservation has marginalized some communities - often communities of color – impacting health outcomes, quality of life, and economic stability. Today, the lack of racial diversity and cultural inclusion makes it nearly impossible to confront the complex challenges facing North Carolina’s communities.

Founded in 2008, the Max Internship program provides a platform for college students and graduates of color – including people of Asian, Black, Latinx, multiracial, and Native American descent – to engage in and help shape conservation work. Rising leaders of color from across the state participate in paid 10-week summer internships, gaining real-world, hands-on experience. CTNC provides compensation, one-on-one mentorship, and professional networking to equip interns with a strong foundation for successful careers in conservation and beyond.

We all have work to do. During the program, host sites learn about conservation through a lens of race and power. Through a combination of individual and group learning, host site supervisors build their capacity to facilitate discussions about race within their organizations, understand their relationships to power, and develop strategies for transforming a culture based in race equity practice.

Program Update:

We will not be accepting applications for the Summer 2022 Max Internship Program. If you are interested in participating in service through CTNC, please consider exploring open positions with Resilience Corps NC.

Program Goals:

Engage and support young leaders of color in conservation work

Provide professional development and networking opportunities for rising conservation leaders

Increase racial equity and inclusion capacity of conservation organizations

The Max Internship program has placed nearly 150 interns with land trusts, government agencies, universities and conservation-related nonprofits. Preference is given to rising juniors, seniors and graduate/professional students.