Given that the SSRA hatchery is located a short 1.4 miles from the University Of New England campus, we've developed an internship program with UNE's Marine Sciences Center. Students receive credit hours for training and hands-on experience at our hatchery. SSRA has also provided internships for students from the University Of Southern Maine.
Our internship program is all-encompassing. Students are introduced to and provided opportunities to experience each and every aspect of our operations, both in the field and in the hatchery. During the course of the internship, they'll learn about water quality testing and actively assist hatchery staff to ensure that water quality parameters remain in the proper ranges for juvenile Atlantic salmon. They will also participate in our egg planting program. Interns are also instructed in fish culture and play an active role of maintaining and rearing the salmon in the hatchery. The interns participate in our annual hatchery open house by helping with hatchery tours and providing a presentation of their learning and experience at SSRA. The internships conclude with the annual stocking of the fry throughout the Saco watershed, and hatchery shut-down.
Many interns are profoundly affected through their time with us and their interactions with the salmon, as evidenced by the fact that many of them return each season to volunteer with us as they continue with their education.
We very much appreciate all of the assistance and ongoing interest in our work to establish self-sustaining populations of Atlantics throughout the Saco River watershed.
Our fondest hope is that ongoing outreach and educational programs will inspire a new generation to continue the work of salmon recovery throughout the New England region.