Archipelagos Institute

Microplastic Research Internship

Pythagorio, Samos, Greece show on map
Plastic debris in the form of microplastics endangers the unique biodiversity of the Mediterranean Sea, which hosts around 10% of world’s marine species. This volunteer program is especially suitable for:
Singles
Groups
Given the natural and socioeconomic importance of the area, plastic pollution poses a serious threat to both marine and human life. The institute's goal is to identify the main source of influx of microplastics into the Aegean Sea, as well as assessing the amount of microplastics present in the environment. Plastic debris in the form of microplastics endangers the unique biodiversity of the Mediterranean Sea, which hosts around 10% of world’s marine species. Microplastic fiber content is collected, filtered and quantified through microscope analysis from samples of:

  • Digestive systems of commercialized fish and invertebrates
  • Digestive systems of stranded marine animals (e.g. dolphins, sea turtles)
  • Surface seawater and water column samples collected through kayak and boat surveys
  • Sediment samples of various habitats (e.g. wetlands, seabeds)

Typical day

Field-work, including kayak surveys to collect water samples, dissections of various organisms.
Lab-work, analysing collected data.
Office-work, organising and analysing data collected from surveys.
Online literature and internet research.

Details on Arrival

Ongoing, throughout the year. 

A thorough induction is provided upon arrival.

Free-time activities

Swimming, hiking, exploring ancient ruins, camping, touristic activities

Swimming
Sightseeing
Diving/Snorkling
Shopping/Souvenirs
Climbing
Hiking
Museum/Opera
Sports
Riding

Program Requirements

In order to join the program you need to be at least 18 years old on the program start date. There might be exemptions if you can provide the permission of your legal guardian(s) or if your are accompanied by your parents.
Language Skills
You need to speak English (intermediate level)
Education Requirements
Environmental Sciences, Biology, Chemistry, Marine Sciences at University level
Nationality Restrictions
No restrictions. Helping hands from all over the world are welcome.
Other Skills
At least one year of college or university studies in the fields of marine, environmental, chemical and/or related sciences
Experience in the use of laboratory equipment
Experience in snorkeling and/or kayaking
Capacity for accurate and consistent data collection and analysis
Comfortable working under low supervision as well as leading a project independently
Ability to write scientific reports and papers
Ability to work both individually and in a team
Excellent organizational skills
Time Commitment
Your helping hand will be required on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday

Included Services

Extra security layer by Volunteer World
Volunteer World is the world's leading comparison platform for international volunteer opportunities. We guide you through a safe and easy application process - including all necessary payments. Planning your next meaningful trip with Volunteer World gives you free access to our:
Quality Assurance
High ethical standards & transparent social impact
Flex Option
Change your reservation at no extra costs
Refund Guarantee
We refund your fees if Archipelagos Institute cancels your trip
Support & Mediation
We cover your back no matter what happens
Our services are free of charge!
All program fees are charged directly by Archipelagos Institute.

Before your journey

Profound consulting and ongoing support (free)
Archipelagos Institute (your host organization) provides consulting and is keen to answer all your questions. Once you reserved your spot, you will receive the contact details of your volunteer project.
Online preparation course (optional, from $49)
Prepare yourself and become a confident and well informed traveler. Global Travel Academy takes you on a journey before you leave home, helping you to become one of the world's greatest travelers. Our trusted partner for online learning offers courses in "International Volunteering", "Travel Health & Safety" and "Travel Safety Abroad".

On-site services

Services by Archipelagos Institute
Monthly fees of 650 euro include:
  • Living expenses (shared accommodation, all meals, wi-fi)
  • Use of equipment & research boats
  • Transport for working purposes
  • Greek language lessons

Students and recent graduates are advised to explore possible funding through their universities, by getting in touch with the Finance / International Relations / Placement/ Erasmus+ Offices at their Universities or other relevant grant providing organizations in their region.

Accommodation
Dorm room with between 3 and 7 other roommates and a bathroom for each room.

Outdoor kitchen.
Hanging out/meeting area in the base.
Washing machine.
Dorm Room
Food & Beverages
Breakfast, lunch and dinner are provided.

Internet Access
Good access at the project site
What's NOT included?
Visa, flights, travel insurance or vaccinations are NOT included in the program fees. An airport pickup isn't included within the program fees either.
Flight Tickets
The nearest airport is Samos Airport (SMI) in Samos. We assist you to find cheap flights to Greece.
Travel Insurance
Going abroad is an adventure and it is always best to be prepared. Sudden illness or injury, cancellation or theft - a travel insurance for Greece provides security and is a plus to have.
Vaccines
If you are intending to volunteer in Greece you should seek medical advice before starting your social journey. Check your required vaccinations for Greece.
Costs: Prices in USD
12 weeks (min. stay)
$ 2,626
13 weeks
$ 2,809
14 weeks
$ 2,991
15 weeks
$ 3,174
19 weeks
$ 3,904
27 weeks
$ 5,365
50 weeks (max. stay)
$ 9,565
Average fees
$ 205 /week

You can volunteer at the project site in Pythagorio, Samos/Greece between 12 weeks and 50 weeks. Please note that the above shown program fees are estimated and subject to exchange rate fluctuations. Archipelagos Institute will let you know about the final price during your application process.
Crowdfunding Service
Generally, volunteering abroad involves certain costs. In case you need financial support, we will assist you to fundraise your volunteer program in Greece.
Deposit (15%)
The deposit is simply to reserve your volunteer placement. Payments are handled by PayPal, our trusted global payment provider. If you don't have a PayPal account, you can also pay using a credit card.
Final Payment (85%)
Your final payment will be agreed with Archipelagos Institute during the application process. Common solutions are either via bank transfer or a cash payment at the project site.
  Europe Southern Europe Greece  Pythagorio, Samos, P.O.Box 42

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Reservation
The project site is open in: Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec

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