Interns and seasonal employees provide important support that offsets shortages of full-time staff. They support environmental and cultural programs, provide educational services, conduct invasive plant control, and serve as interpreters. The park’s interns are typically college graduates, and serve rotations from around three months to a year. They all have specialized skill sets that qualify them for the jobs they fill at the park. They do receive a modest stipend, but the main benefit is experience. By working with interns, regular employees and volunteers are exposed to the fresh ideas and updated knowledge that the interns bring with them. The interns get to the park through a number of programs. The most common program is the Student Conservation Association which unites young people with opportunities to gain experience in real-world positions with national parks and other entities.
Association support over the years includes:
- 1985 – Donated $1,000.00 to hire a student as assistant curator for twelve weeks.
- 1990 – Sponsored at a cost of $1,000.00 a student volunteer.
- 1999 – Donated $2,000 for the internship program from the C&O Canal Fund.
- 2003 – Donated $3,000 for park internships from the C & O Canal Fund.
- 2010 – Donated $3,000 for intern program.
- 2016 – Funded a contract extension for acting Education Coordinator funded in the amount of $2,000.
- 2017 – Funded an internship for the Cumberland Visitors Center for the period May through September at a cost of $13,000.
- 2018 – Funded an internship for the Cumberland Visitors Center for the period May through October at a cost of $22,050.
(Updated September 2018.)