Professional Internship Experience

A core component of the IMES program is helping students gain hands-on experience in career or research environments so they can make informed decisions regarding available career paths post-graduation. Student interns will gain firsthand work experience in professional organizations (government agencies, NGOs and NPOs) where scientific evidence is applied to benefit society, with an emphasis on environmental issues, including education, management and policy regarding San Francisco Bay and nearby coastal waters. The internship experience is a 1 semester course that pairs each student with a host organization for 15 weeks of work on a special project.

Here is a list of just a handful of the many wonderful partners we have worked with:

Bay Conservation and Development Commission

The San Francisco Bay Conservation and Development Commission (BCDC) is a California state planning and regulatory agency with regional authority over the San Francisco Bay, the Bay’s shoreline band, and the Suisun Marsh. BCDC is the nation’s oldest coastal zone agency. Its mission is to protect and enhance San Francisco Bay and to encourage the Bay’s responsible and productive use for this and future generations. State law requires sponsors of projects that propose to fill or extract materials from the Bay to apply for a BCDC permit.


California Ocean Science Trust

OST is an independent non-profit created by a California statute that recognized the value of independent science to support decisions. Connecting government, science and communities is hard—and the reason for our existence. They work across traditional boundaries to build trust and empower broad participation in policy and management decisions with useful, reliable science.


Environmental Law Alliance Worldwide

The Environmental Law Alliance Worldwide (ELAW) helps communities speak out for clean air, clean water, and a healthy planet. We are a global alliance of attorneys, scientists and other advocates collaborating across borders to promote grassroots efforts to build a sustainable, just future. ELAW advocates, working in their home countries, know best how to protect the environment. By giving our partners the legal and scientific support they need, ELAW helps challenge environmental abuses and builds a worldwide corps of skilled, committed advocates working to protect ecosystems and communities for generations to come.



The Exploratorium is a public learning laboratory and museum on San Francisco's Embarcadero exploring the world through science, art, and human perception. Their mission is to create inquiry-based experiences that transform learning worldwide. They create tools and experiences that help you to become an active explorer: hundreds of explore-for-yourself exhibits, a website with over 35,000 pages of content, film screenings, evening art and science events for adults, plus much more. 



ICF's Fish and Aquatic Science Team conducts applied research with a focus on fisheries ecology in the San Francisco Estuary. ICF provides support to federal, state, and other stakeholder partners for all aspects of aquatic research, from study planning and field sampling to data analysis and publication.


Marine Conservation Institute

As a leader in the global movement to protect vast ocean areas, Marine Conservation Institute uses the latest science to identify important marine ecosystems, advocate for their protection, and measure progress toward effective, sustainable marine protection.

Marine Mammal Center

The Marine Mammal Center is leading the field in ocean conservation through marine mammal rescue, veterinary medicine, science, and education. Marine mammals are ecosystem indicators, and these animals provide insights into human and ocean health threats. Together with the Marine Mammal Center, we are taking action today to support a network of scientists and stewards to protect our shared ocean environment for future generations.


National Marine Sanctuaries

The National Marine Sanctuary System consists of 14 marine protected areas that encompass more than 150,000 square miles of marine and Great Lakes waters from Washington State to the Florida Keys, and from Lake Huron to American Samoa. The system includes 13 national marine sanctuaries and the Papahanaumokuakea Marine National Monument. We have partnered with both the Gulf of the Farallones and Cordell Bank sanctuaries.


San Francisco Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve

NOAA’s National Estuarine Research Reserve System is a network of 28 Reserves in 23 states and territories. NOAA provides each reserve with funding, national guidance and technical assistance, while the states provide matching funds, personnel, and administrative oversight. The NERRS helps to protect more than one million acres of estuarine land and water; offers educational opportunities for students, teachers and the public; informs and trains coastal land managers and other decision makers; and serves as a network of living research laboratories for scientists.


San Francisco Bay Regional Water Quality Control Board

The San Francisco Bay Regional Water Quality Control Board serves to preserve, enhance, and restore the quality of California's water resources and drinking water for the protection of the environment, public health, and all beneficial uses, and to ensure proper water resource allocation and efficient use, for the benefit of present and future generations.


San Francisco Estuary Institute

The San Francisco Estuary Institute (SFEI) is one of California’s premier aquatic and ecosystem science institutes. Our mission: provide scientific support and tools for decision-making and communication through collaborative efforts. We provide independent science to assess and improve the health of the waters, wetlands, wildlife and landscapes of San Francisco Bay, the California Delta and beyond. SFEI’s 50 scientists and experts provide data, technology and tools that empower government, civic and business leaders to create cost-effective solutions for complex environmental issues--from cleaner water and sustainable communities to climate change. We have three primary programs: Clean Water, Resilient Landscapes, and Environmental Informatics.


Strategic Marketing and Communications

Strategic Marketing and Communications is responsible for sharing information about SF State with campus and external audiences, toward the goal of building pride and recognition for the University's many strengths and achievements. The department is the University's liaison with the news media, and uses publications, Web technologies and paid media to help inform constituents about the campus. Key functional areas within the department include a) Media relations, b) Periodical publications, c) Graphic design, d) Web publishing, e) and Marketing/advertising.