George River Internship

2017 GRI Movie

Click HERE to download the George River Internship Application (GRI)

When: July 2020 (exact dates TBD)

Project Objectives:

  • Enlist 10 Advanced Interns annually to conduct assessments
  • Collect physical and biological data to establish baseline conditions
  • Provide experience at fisheries assessment projects (not just weirs)

Students applying to participate in the internship should be highly motivated individuals who are interested in learning more about the area’s natural resources. Students will be involved in assisting biologists with counting salmon, sampling fish for biological data, collecting habitat information, and completing a curriculum of learning activities ranging from fish dissections to analyzing fisheries data. Students will spend seven days at the remote field camps of the George River as well as the George River Weir.  Students will spend 5 days floating the George River as well as setting up 5 more stations along the way.  The interns’ travel to and from the project site and room and board will be paid. The intern will also receive a $500 stipend after successful completion of the program. Interns must complete the written curriculum before the stipend will be paid.  Also, High School Students can earn 0.5 credit in River Systems Ecology.


  • Participants must be between 14-19 years of age
  • Participants should be a resident of one of the Kuspuk villages but applications from other villages will be considered
  • Participants must have completed 2 prior Math Science Expeditions on the Salmon / Aniak River.  Also must be recommended by MSE Staff
  • Participants must have a mature attitude and good work ethic
  • Participants must be motivated to complete all work and written assignments

Complete Applications Include the Following:

  • Application form signed by a parent or legal guardian
  • Resumé
  • Cover Letter
  • Copy of two forms of ID (If already on file from previous years, you do not need to submit)
  • Employment Verification Form I-9   (If already on file from previous years, you do not need to submit)
  • W-4 Form (Updated for 2020)

Send completed application packet to:

  • Tony Wilson
    4101 University Drive
    Anchorage, Alaska 99508
  • or email to

Project Location:

The George River will provide some unique opportunities for this project. First is the weir location in the lower river which provides salmon escapement numbers. Second, not far above the weir, the river essentially splits into two forks which are very similar in catchment area and physical characteristics. This could provide an opportunity for conducting a “paired watershed” type of study. The watershed is predominantly oriented north and south and is not heavily vegetated, which may result in an increase in thermal regimes, relative to other watersheds in the Kuskokwim basin. There is an active mining operation in the one fork.

General Study Design:

Establish a minimum of two long term reference sites on each fork, and one below the forks but above the weir. Each site would consist of; a main channel location and an off-channel location, preferably a spring brook, for a total of 10 sampling locations.

At the main channel site below the forks and one in each fork, a permanent reference site would be established. These sites would be instrumented with continuous data recording pressure transducers and temperature loggers. Additional physical measures would also be collected at these sites, i.e. discharge, pebble counts, embeddedness, water chemistry, other?

All sites would collect information, such as species abundance estimates, salmon condition factor, macroinvertebrates, habitat characterization, stable isotope collections, temperature loggers, and other water quality measures.

Adult salmon monitoring could consist of a few days at the weir doing counts. Future work could involve tagging at the weir (for apportionment) between forks, carcass surveys, or aerial surveys.

Project Timeline:

Data collection would occur over a 8 day period (including logistics) July 20 – July 28. Measures would be repeated annually and expanded as the project evolves.

HS Students earn 0.5 credits in “River Systems Ecology”