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Marine Alliance for Science and Technology for Scotland



MASTS is committed to providing PGRs of the MASTS Graduate School with internship opportunities. There are also occasions where opportunities are open to PGRs who are not  members of the Graduate School but are members of MASTS. Such opportunities will be advertised via the Friday email.

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There is growing interest across the higher education sector in building closer links between academia and external stakeholders: potential employers, regulatory bodies, research funders, policy makers, lobbyists, and many others. MASTS see the facilitation of internship opportunities as a core interface for bringing future cohorts of ‘influencers’ into direct contact with individuals and institutional cultures. Completing an internship should maximise impact from research and enhance personal and professional development.

Internships offer appointees an excellent opportunity to build working relationships and extend their research experience into business, policy or other settings (or vice versa) – this programme is not just for students – academics and employees are welcome to participate. The skills and experience you acquire will add real value.

Internships can last between two weeks up to six months. Appointees may work either full-time or part-time and are generally expected to spend between 50-100% of their time in the host organisation.

If you are interested in providing an internship please contact Dr Emma Defew at

Internship opportunities

Internships are advertised on the MASTS Vacancies page, and you can also find internship opportunities here

You can also keep up to date with opportunities by signing up to the MASTS mailing list and following us on Twitter or LinkedIn.

Examples of some previous internships

In autumn 2021 MASTS co-funded three internships under the Bright Green Placement Programme with Bright Green Business.

The successful interns began their 3 month placements in October 2022 with different teams in Marine Scotland. MASTS was pleased to hear all the interns accepted the offer to extend their internships an extra three months allowing them to continue their roles until the end of March 2022.

Hannah – Blue Economy Intern, Caitlin – Policy Developer Crown Estate Intern, Lucy – Marine Protected Areas Intern.

Find out what the interns have been up to during their placements, the news skills they’ve learned and their advice for anyone considering an internship.



The University of St Andrews and MASTS graduate student James Rimmer undertook a three month internship with colleagues from Marine Scotland Science in his final year of his PhD. His internship ran from September to December 2021. 

Heriot Watt University and MASTS Graduate student, Hannah Lee, undertook a three month internship in her final PhD year with Marine Conservation Society. A key theme of the project was to connect young people from the UK to young people from the UKOTs, specifically the British Virgin Islands (BVI), and vice versa to enable peer-to-peer learning and foster engagement. The initial work with these young people was a pilot project. Watch the summary project video here. Read about Hannah’s personal reflection on her internship here.

This internship was awarded to Rhei Ammaturo from the University of Strathclyde. Rhei is a SUPER DTP PhD student.

The Marine Futures Internship Programme offers a unique opportunity to candidates who are passionate and enthusiastic about the marine environment. The Marine Futures Intern will gain skills, knowledge and experience across a variety of sectors in this exciting field to help direct and shape their future career ambitions.

This internship is funded by The Crown Estate and project managed by the North West Wildlife Trusts. The programme is run in partnership with The Crown Estate, the North West Wildlife Trusts, Ørsted and Natural England. Each partner organisation provides opportunities for the intern to develop skills in specialist areas including, marine conservation advice, sustainable fisheries, renewable energy development, marine policy, and community engagement.

The successful intern will follow a varied schedule that will allow them to gain a range of skills and experiences including: working with a variety of teams across different sectors; writing for different audiences; working with local communities to raise awareness about environmental issues; undertaking surveys; the use of social media in the workplace; delivering media interviews and presentations; and participating in online meetings, training and webinars.

The intern will also get the chance to undertake an independent research project, looking into a practical solution to a challenge currently facing the offshore wind sector, and how this could be developed into an opportunity for net gain. This will involve working remotely with different teams (from engineering, to environmental and concept) across the partner organisations.

MASTS (including the SUPER DTP) and SAGES offered a unique opportunity for a short-term Internship with the Offshore Energy Environmental Advice Group at Marine Scotland Science (MSS) and the Scottish Centre of Excellence in Satellite Applications. Ping Ma from the University of Strathclyde worked with Malcolm MacDonald to develop and refine methods to identify offshore oil and gas platforms and wind turbines using satellite data and use the outputs to quantify the contribution of offshore energy to ‘ocean sprawl’ across different global production basins. See the advert here.

OSC take on voluntary interns occasionally, and are open to candidates of all ages and disciplines. Duties vary depending on the work required at the time. Find out more

June 2019 – Congratulations to Hazel Smith who has won the Academic Award of the Young Professionals Green Energy Awards 2019, organised by Scottish Renewables and with the Academic Award sponsored by the Energy Technology Partnership. Hazel is a MASTS PhD student, and she won the award for work she did last summer as part of the MASTS internship programme. She did an internship with Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH), using a demographic model to assess the impact of the offshore wind construction noise on population trends of marine mammal species. The results from this work are already being implemented by the industry, that they nominated her for the award which she duly won.

  • “Target strength of fish and squid”. Download the final poster from Aaron Williamson and Jackson Swan
  • “Interactions between Grey Gurnard and Haddock on Rockall Bank”. Download the Final Report from Charlie Cameron & Ellen Harrison.
  • “Production of final version smartphone application and data queries for citizen science research in Brazil to improve mangrove crab fisheries management”  Completed by Michael Gauld at ENU.
  • “Scotland’s Fish Stocks Compendium: compiling the story of Scotland’s key fish stocks into a key policy tool”. Completed by Laurie Smeaton at Marine Scotland, Edinburgh.
  • “Marine mammals in Scottish Waters”. Based at the Scottish Government Marine Lab in Aberdeen and completed by Natalie Ward. Download final report.
  • “Ex-post analysis of prior spending and employment claims for offshore wind development in Scotland”. Based in Dundee with Ariel Bergmann and completed by Prabina Khanal. Download final summary report.
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