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Save Our Shorelines works with organizations dedicated to the environmental education to provide meaningful volunteer and paid summer teaching assistant positions for college students. 

What does it involve?

The MMA program consists of 8 one week long sessions and 2 weeks of staff training with MMA  Educators assigned to a specific group of students each week. Like any manager within an organization supervising employees, Educators instruct, lead and motivate their group of kids to accomplish a wide variety of tasks during the week.  And exactly like any modern real world manager, this leadership must be accomplished through fun and motivation, not through bossing or intimidation.  But what is most unlike a real world leadership job, Save Our Shorelines MMA Educators get a fresh start each week with a new group of “employees” to try new things and work toward finding their leadership voice. In this way, 8 weeks with the MMA provides leadership development opportunities equal to many years or many jobs in a real world.

For those passionate about environmental education, the outdoors, and leadership development there is simply no more rewarding way to spend a summer than as a Save Our Shorelines Marine Mammal Academy intern.  


I'm headed to grad school, what can the MMA do for me?

For graduating seniors considering grad school in Seattle or taking time off before applying, we have off season opportunities which include room and board accommodations in our modern waterfront apartments in exchange for MMA volunteer duties which consist primarily of community outreach in the form of Marine Mammal presentations at local schools. The off season program makes it possible for grad students to pursue graduate studies without incurring further debt, as well as serving as an incubator for recent grads wanting to try out Seattle or build up their resume with non-profit experience prior to applying.

I'm a graduating senior and still don't know what I want to do following graduation, are there MMA opportunities for me?

Graduating without immediate plans is common but stressful, and the MMA can help.


The mission of Save Our Shorelines is two-fold. To educate and empower area youth with marine science outdoor education life skills. And, to educate and empower our MMA Interns and help them work their way into meaningful educational and career opportunities.

There is simply no better way of developing the type of soft skills necessary for success in your academic career or first real world “big” job than spending a summer as a Save Our Shorelines MMA Intern.

It goes without saying that you can accomplish a lot more a lot quicker with a whole team or organization behind you than you can on your own. However, it’s a lot harder to work successfully within an organization because it requires special “soft skills” that take time and opportunity to develop.

The three main soft skills for getting along and advancing within organizations are “managing up” (dealing with your boss or bosses), “managing down” (dealing with your subordinates), and “managing across” (dealing with your peers in the organization).  All three take real world practice to develop. There’s no book that can do it for you, and there is no one single way to be. Everyone needs to find their own voice, and the Save Our Shorelines Marine Mammal Academy offers a unique opportunity for college students to practice these soft skills and develop the confidence to find their own unique leadership voice.

The MMA program also provides great practice in “managing across”.  Being able to work with different co-educators each week is another opportunity which would take many years to replicate in a real world job where your work with the same co-workers for long periods of time.

And of course, the MMA provides great practice in managing up, dealing with the management team. The MMA program is small enough for all Educators to have daily one on one interaction with the directors, once again, experience which would take years to replicate in a real world job.

So how do I turn my summer as a Save Our Shorelines MMA intern into a real world job or grad school opportunity?          

For those thinking about a career after college, we are located only 20 minutes from downtown Seattle, one of the most vibrant employment centers in the nation. A summer in Seattle can provide important local knowledge and an opportunity to connect with young people from major Seattle based employers such as Amazon, Microsoft, Boeing, REI, Costco, Starbucks, the University of Washington, and many others.  

At the end of the MMA summer program season, MMA staff in good standing are eligible for off season positions as well as subsidized apartment accommodations which allow them to support themselves while launching their job or grad school search.

Although there is never anything easy about getting into a selective grad schools, or obtaining meaningful work and financial independence right out of an undergrad degree, Save Our Shorelines offers a well trod path and supportive environment for young people to relax, grow, learn, and achieve their dreams.

For those interested in applying, please send your resume and a cover letter to or you can call 206-324-6715 for more information! 

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