Project Code: NPS-USA-11

Communicating the Largest Global Event in the History of Caves and Karst at our National Parks

Project Title Communicating the Largest Global Event in the History of Caves and Karst at our National Parks
Project Summary This project seeks to make the International Year of Caves & Karst (IYCK) and Cave Week 2021 a large educational event within the National Park System. Work will involve communication, writing, web content development and information sharing with national park staff across the country.
Country United States
Agency National Park Service
DoS Office N/A
Post N/A
Section N/A
Number of Interns 1
Project Description

The National Park Service manages approximately 5,000 caves with at least four of the top 10 longest caves in the world. Caves are naturally occurring voids, interconnected passages, or alcoves in the earth. Caves are excellent natural laboratories for preserving fossils, minerals, ecosystems, and records of past climates. Specially adapted animals live in extreme conditions within caves.
Karst is a type of landscape that forms when rocks are dissolved by weak acids. Features that are often characteristic of karst terrains include caves, sinking or disappearing streams, sinkholes and springs. Acidic groundwater slowly dissolves the rock creating passages and conduits which subsurface water can move through. The landscape is usually formed in limestone but may include dolomite, gypsum, salt and other carbonate bedrock. Caves and karst make landscapes diverse, fascinating, and rich in resources, including the largest springs and most productive groundwater on Earth. Caves and karst provide a unique subsurface habitat for rare animals. Caves preserve fragile archaeological and paleontological materials for millennia. Throughout history people have used caves for many purposes: from guano mining to tourism. The potential of caves as natural laboratories may be their most significant use.
To educate the public and celebrate caves and karst resources we are seeking an intern to assist with the planning, promotion and communications of the International Year of Caves and Karst (IYCK) that will be celebrated worldwide in 2021.
The IYCK will be the largest ever event showcasing caves and karst landscapes. It already involves more than 50 countries, and more are joining the effort weekly. The IYCK will involve a vast range of events including social media communication, international conferences, educational content and special courses for students of all ages, special tours at show caves across the globe and much more.
The internship position will act as the communication nexus for information on the IYCK and Cave Week for the national parks. The types of tasks that can be expected with this position include things such as:
• Assisting with management and selection of winners for a karst-themed art contest,
• Create templates for the NPS – IYCK for parks to use,
• Contacting parks that will be interested in participating in the National Park – IYCK,
• Synthesize caves/karst information for the public,
• Emailing copies of the IYCK brochures to parks,
• Participating in a conference call on a park's plans for IYCK,
• Maintaining records and information on what parks are doing for Cave Week and the IYCK,
• Developing work plans with project mentors,
• answering phone questions on Cave Week and IYCK from parks and individuals,
• Updating social media for Cave Week and IYCK,
• Writing web content for Cave Week and IYCK,
• Inventory submitted images to be used for social media and the web.

Required Skills or Interests
Skill(s)
Design thinking
Editing and proofreading
Educational design
Graphic design
Infographic design
Social media management
Storytelling/blogging/vlogging
Website design
Writing
Additional Information

Experience in illustrations and graphic design with an interest in science and/or caves. Excellent communication skills both verbally and in writing. An interest in geology, caves and the natural world. A desire to assist the National Parks. Outstanding English proficiency is needed as well as good skills with grammar, punctuation, syntax, sentence construction, etc. in writing. Proficiency in any other languages would be a plus for any applicant. This project seeks to make the International Year of Caves and Karst (IYCK) (http://iyck2021.org/) and Cave Week (https://www.nps.gov/subjects/caves/index.htm) 2021 a large educational event within the National Park System.