Scholarships | Island Internship Program

The Island Institute supports students in academic and professional-development pursuits. We firmly believe that these students contribute to the viability and vitality of life in year-round island and working waterfront communities.


Since 1990, the Island Institute has made over 870 scholarship awards totaling more than $1.6 million. In 2015, we granted over $150,000 to 68 island students, offering financial assistance to all qualifying island residents and enabling recipients to pursue academic and life-enriching endeavors at colleges and universities across North America. We also offer a middle and high school semester and summer program scholarship that enables students to have unique experiences that both prepare them for college and life beyond.

Geiger Scholarship

The Geiger Scholarship offers two or three scholarships each year supporting high school students who are interested in attending a summer, fall, or spring semester enrichment or travel program in the United States or abroad and two or three scholarships each year for middle and high school students who would like to attend a summer camp or program. This scholarship is intended to serve students from Maine’s midcoast and downeast islands who may not have these experiences otherwise.

The Geiger scholarship provides students who are eager to expand their educational horizons with a scholarship that can be paid directly towards tuition costs or program fees.

View Geiger Scholarship Application

Maine Island Scholarship

This scholarship is available to year-round residents of Maine's 15 unbridged island communities attending post-secondary institutions. Scholarships range from $250 to $5,000 annually. There is no limit on the number of scholarships that will be given. Available to first-time and renewal applicants. 

Available to Island students who will be attending a two- or four-year college, university, or vocational/technical institution, including non-traditional students, who also meet the following residency requirements are eligible for the scholarship:

Chebeague, Cliff, Great Cranberry, Great Diamond, Frenchboro, Isle Au Haut, Islesford, Long, Matinicus, Monhegan, Peaks, and Swan’s: Applicants must have been a resident of the island for at least three years prior to graduating from high school.
Islesboro, North Haven, Vinalhaven: 
Applicants must have graduated from their island’s high school and have been a resident of the island for at least three years prior to graduating from their high school.

The 2016 Maine Island Scholarship application will be available starting in January 2016 and is due April 1, 2016
Special Scholarships Available Through The Maine Island Scholarship
Louis W. Cabot Academic and Community Leadership Scholarship
  • One $10,000 scholarship will be given to a graduating high school senior (year-round residents of unbridged islands only) to be applied over the course of four years ($2,500 per year). The winner of the scholarship will be a high school graduate who exemplifies academic excellence and who is recognized by his or her peers, teachers and community as exemplifying the true spirit of leadership in service to others. This scholarship also requires a second essay and a finalist interview, if necessary. Available to one graduating high school senior per year.

S. Parkman Shaw Scholarship
  • This $10,000 scholarship will be given to a junior or senior in college (year-round residents of unbridged islands only). For recipients  going into their junior year, the scholarship will be split into two $5,000 payments over their junior and senior year. The winner of this scholarship will be an upperclassman who demonstrates not only successful academic growth and achievement over his or her college career, but also the capacity to overcome unique challenges and/or difficult circumstances. Preference will be given to a student whose parents make their living out on the water in a vessel. This prestigious scholarship also requires a second essay and finalist interview, if necessary. Available to current college sophomore and junior applicants only.

Sweet Scholarship
  • This $10,000 scholarship will be given to a graduating high school senior (year-round un-bridged island resident) to be applied over the course of four years ($2,500 per year) based on academic success. This scholarship is awarded to a student who exemplifies a combination of academic excellence and leadership. Available to graduating high school seniors only.

Otter Island Fund            
  • Any year-round unbridged island resident who attends one of the following secondary or post-secondary schools is eligible to receive this $5,000 scholarship which is renewable for each year that the student attends the eligible school. Schools included in this fund are: Pomfret, Groton, St. George’s, Northfield-Mt. Hermon, Connecticut College, Vanderbilt University, Colorado College, Texas Christian University, Duke University, University of Utah, or Harvard Business School. Available to first-time and renewal applicants.

Seth Jordan Memorial Fund Scholarship
  • An additional award of $2,500 will be given to supplement the general pool scholarship received by the graduating high school senior residing in Casco Bay who has the highest GPA. Available to graduating high school seniors only.



Island Internship Program

During the summer of 2015, the Island Institute will place 16 island college students and rising high school seniors in internship positions with island businesses, municipalities, schools, and nonprofit organizations. The Island Internship Program is designed as a way for island students to gain practical work experience in Maine and explore career opportunities on the islands. Year-round island students who meet the eligibility requirements for the Maine Island Scholarship (see above) are eligible for the Island Internship Program. The program:

  • places rising high school seniors, college students, and recent college graduates into on-island internship positions;
  • is based on 10 professional standards;
  • uses a formal application process and selection criteria to select summer interns and host sites;
  • provides summer interns with a stipend of up to $2,500 and travel support;
  • assists both summer interns and host sites in developing goals and expectations for the summer internship experience;
  • provides ongoing support and mentorship to interns and host sites as needed.

Interns will be selected based on their demonstrated commitment to their communities, as well as an interest in enhancing their own skills and supporting a local organization. Summer internship host sites will be selected from a group of island businesses, municipalities, schools, and nonprofits that have identified meaningful project work and have the ability to support and mentor an intern. Applicants will indicate which host sites are of interest. The Island Institute works to partner interns with host organizations based on their mutual interests and community connections.

In order to give students and host sites the flexibility they might need, both time-wise and financially, the program will be broken down into four tiers. The tier is chosen by the hours the intern is expected to work.  The stipend they will receive and the expected host site contribution also change as a reflection of intern hours worked. The four tiers are as follows:

  • 300 hours; $2,500 stipend; $500 host site contribution
  • 225 hours; $1,875 stipend; $375 host site contribution
  • 150 hours; $1,250 stipend; $250 host site contribution
  • 75 hours; $625 stipend; $125 host site contribution           
Information for Summer Interns
  • Island Scholars in college, as well as rising high school seniors, are invited to apply
  • Selected summer interns will be placed in an appropriate position through an application, interview and matching process
  • Host sites will provide direct mentoring and learning experiences to the summer interns
  • The Island Institute will provide:
    • orientation
    • ongoing support
    • a stipend of up $2,500, depending on selected internship tier 
  • Summer Interns are expected to:
    • work a maximum of 300 hours, depending on selected internship tier, with the host organization for a period of 8–10 weeks
    • participate in orientation
    • complete evaluation reports
The 2016 Island Scholar Internship Application will be available starting in January 2016 and is due in mid- April 2016.
Information for Host Sites
  • We ask host sites to complete a short application to define the work for the intern position
  • The Island Institute will provide host sites with copies of intern applications to ensure that a well-qualified student is matched with the position
  • Host sites are responsible for providing meaningful work and daily oversight of the intern
  • Host sites are required to provide a cash match or in-kind contribution for the position. (See tier system above for exact amount)
February 2, 2015
  • ​Applications due from interested host sites
April 15, 2015
  • ​Applications due from interested high school and college students
May 2015
  • ​Student intern applications delivered electronically to host sites for review
  • Summer internship placements finalized
June 2015
  • ​One-day training/orientation for students and host sites
  • Summer interns begin term of service
July 2015
  • ​Check-in with sites and summer interns
  • Ongoing program evaluation
August 2015
  • ​Summer interns complete term of service prior to September 7, 2015
  • Final evaluations completed within one week of ending the internship

For additional information please contact:
Julia Maher, Community Development Associate

2015 Internship Host Sites
Basket Island Oysters, Casco Bay

Basket Island Oysters, based on Peaks, produces sustainably grown oysters in Casco Bay. The intern will work on all aspects of oyster aquaculture, from handling seed to harvesting market-sized oysters. The intern will learn the ins and outs of oyster farming, and the nuances of operating a small business in Maine. Additionally the intern will gain experience handling small boats and working on Casco Bay. The intern should have an interest in marine science and aquaculture, love the outdoors in all types of weather, follow directions well, and be reliable. Previous experience working on boats is a plus, but is not required. This is a 300-hour internship with a $2,500 stipend.

TEIA, Assistant Event Manager, Peaks Island

As the Assistant Event Manager, the TEIA intern will work behind the scenes with the Event Manger to develop, run, and supervise a profitable or breakeven event. The intern’s responsibilities include: identifying a target market for the event and executing a marketing plan; coordinating all aspects of the event; registering attendees; managing the budget; coordinating speakers and/or entertainment; identifying and coordinating volunteers; and helping create event decorations and manage the room set up. The intern will gain hands-on experience of how to plan, mange, and hold a successful event. This is a 300-hour internship with a $2,500 stipend.

Peaks Island Children's Workshop

The intern will be expected to build relationships with island children between the ages of 1 to 8. Experience working with children of different ages is preferred. The intern will be responsible for helping to plan summer activities for different age groups and for following the curriculum set by teachers. The intern should demonstrate maturity, initiative, and dependability as well as respect for the confidentiality of families and staff at the workshop. Finally, the intern will also play a part in organizing and participating the Workshop’s summer fundraiser. This is a 225-hour internship with a $1,875 stipend.

Peaks Island Invasive Plant Intern

Working in conjunction the Peaks Island Land Preserve (PILP) the Peaks Environmental Action Team (PEAT), and Lockhart Gardens, the intern will work to raise awareness of invasive plants on the island. The intern will attend meetings of PILP and PEAT, and possibly attend trainings by the Casco Bay Invasive Network. The intern will work on invasive plants on Peaks, promote the environmental education of homeowners, remove invasives, and plant examples of native non-invasive plants. In addition, the intern will help organize public forums on environmental issues and help develop a poster about invasives. Finally, the intern will map the locations of invasives in the PILP. The intern should have in interest in ecology, enjoy working outdoors even in the rain, and be able to lift 50 lbs. This is a 300-hour internship with a $2,500 stipend.

Flowfold, Peaks Island and Casco Bay

The intern will help Flowfold with their media and marketing. The intern will write stories to share with customers, interview fans, develop social media content, and work with photography or video to create new media campaigns. They will conduct market research on new product trends and new leads, as well as supporting general operations, including packing and shipping. The intern must not be afraid to tackle new projects, be comfortable writing, enjoy working with a team, and be curious. The intern must be able to travel to Scarborough once a week to meet with their advisor. This is a 225-hour internship with a $1,875 stipend.

Casco Bay Naturalist on Long Island

The intern will learn about the ecology of Long Island and provide weekly environmental programming to the public. The intern will have an interest in biology and ecology, enjoy working with people, especially children, and be eager to learn about a broad range of environmental topics and share that knowledge with others. Basic programming content will be provided, but the intern will also have the opportunity to develop some new content. The intern will work from home, organize, promote and deliver interactive programs at various on-island sites, help organize and promote guest presentations, and travel to the Casco Bay Estuary Partnership office in Portland once a week for meetings with their advisor. Naturalist trainings with other experts may require additional local travel. This is a 10-week, 225-hour internship with a $1,875 stipend.

Vinalhaven Medical Center

The intern will work with the lead Medical Assistant and Nurse Practitioner to become familiar with drawing blood, lab work, and consulting with patients. The intern will also do administrative work to learn about non face-to-face care and how to communicate with support staff and providers. The intern must be committed to working in a mission-driven organization and have a strong commitment to serving the island population. The Medical Center requires strict confidentiality. Computer literacy is also necessary. The intern should be a current college student, and experience in the medical field is strongly preferred. This is a 300-hour internship with a $2,500 stipend. 

Island Institute Education Research Intern

Our intern will work closely with the Community Development and Education teams to help realize our project plan for future Education and Island Scholars programming. The intern will help organize, collect, and systematize data from island schools as well as from other local and state organizations and agencies. The intern will also collect information from current island students and parents about the kinds of support they need around transitioning from middle school to high school, high school to college, and into careers. Finally, the intern will consider how programming in other places might translate to Maine islands. The intern should be comfortable with (or able to learn) simple data entry, research, communicating with others, and working as part of a team. The intern must be a Penobscot Bay islander who is willing to travel to Rockland. This is a 300-hour internship with a $2,500 stipend.

Fox I Printworks, North Haven

The Fox I Printworks intern will learn many skills and methods in the screen printing process, from preparing designs and images, coating and preparing screens, registering screens on the printing press prior to production, to the actual printing on a manual press. The intern will be responsible for helping to inventory supplies and managing client orders. The intern will also assist in the retail end of the business by restocking inventory, tracking sales, and interacting with customers. This is a 300-hour internship position, which carries a $2,500 stipend.

Edible I.S.L.E., North Haven

The intern will learn the care and maintenance of the school vegetable gardens, greenhouse, and aquaponics system. The intern will help establish and coordinate a group of students, parents, and community members as the NHCS Garden and Greenhouse team. The intern will coordinate a schedule of care, maintenance, and harvesting of the gardens, greenhouse, and aquaponics system. The intern will help integrate gardening skills and aquaponics system care into the summer school student experience at NHCS. In addition, the intern will have the opportunity to learn from Turner Farm staff how to maximize the growing potential at the school gardens. This is a 150-hour internship with a $1,250 stipend. 

North Haven Historical Society

The intern will be trained as a docent for the museum and help to organize, store, and reposition collections. This will involve photographing and documenting items in the museum. A maximum of 3 hours per week will be spent entering data into the Past Perfect software. The intern must enjoy working with the public, be thoughtful and mature, and be able to work independently. A strong interest or background in history is preferred. This is a 150-hour internship with a $1,250 stipend.

Artisan Books and Bindery, Islesboro

The intern will assist with the cataloging, photographing, and research required to sell used and rare books online and via the open shop location on Islesboro. The intern will work with books in all subject areas, and needs experience of basic database software, Word, and Excel. The intern should have an interest in hardcopy research, good attention to detail, and should feel comfortable communicating and working with the public. The intern will develop their knowledge in a variety of academic fields and subjects, as well as an understanding of customer service and the care of rare books. This is a 300-hour internship position, which carries a stipend of $2,500. 

Horticulture Program, Islesboro

Two interns will be responsible for the ongoing management and upkeep of the orchard, commercial hydroponics system, and annual row crops. This includes basic agricultural tasks such as weeding, planting, watering, fertilizing, and practicing integrated pest management. Twice a week, interns will also run the farm-stand. This includes keeping shelves stocked, cleaning/processing/bagging produce, interacting with customers, and accepting payment. There are two 300-hour internships, each of which carries a $2,500 stipend.

Swan’s Island Educational Society

The intern will attend to the needs of patrons: find materials, troubleshoot basic computer problems, answer general questions, and assist patrons with checkout. The intern will assist the Executive Director in publicizing and organizing summer programs, and will have the opportunity to develop a project of interest. The intern will also be focused on updating social media applications—Facebook, Twitter, and the SIES website—and working with new technology and equipment. This is a 300-hour internship with a $2,500 stipend. 

Islesford Boatworks 

Islesford Boatworks is a successful non-profit community-based summer boatbuilding program for children ages 7 and up. The ideal intern will have an interest in education and/or community relations and be a proficient writer. The intern will be responsible for photo documenting the summer semester and helping keep a written record of all projects and activities, in order to help develop and share resources for similar programs. The intern will also help run summer programs, which will include teaching, building the boat, and maintaining the shop. The intern will be responsible for planning and representing IB at community events, like the end of summer boat launch and boat raffle, and helping to strengthen IB’s community relations via Facebook, press releases, and interviewing community members. This is a 225-hour internship with a $1,875 stipend.

For more information on the Island Scholars Summer Internship Program, contact:
Julia Maher, Community Development Associate